Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Oh I do like to be beside the seaside!

Hello Strangers! It has been a while, but I have been thinking of you all, promise! I have been working on a few bits and pieces that I am unable to blog yet, but be patient and all will be revealed...though don't get too excited!
At journal club this week, our prompt was "patchwork". So after a little research on Youtube and Pinterest I had a play, without any real idea of where I was going - this is usually how I work and it tends to work for me. If I have an idea of what I am aiming for, I am generally disappointed in the execution!
Using the Tim Holtz tissue wrap as a background I added random blocks of colour (Frescos) to the pages and then using a contrasting colour stamped lightly on the colour laid down. The effect of the tissue wrap and the colours for me is reminiscent of the holidays and the beach....my favourite place. I adore being by the water, winter or summer, the sound of the waves and the salty smell, it is good for the soul! I am very lucky to live very near an estuary (walking distance) and a short drive from the coast and I totally make the most of it,. Anyway I digress...
Despite my love of the coast, my stamp collection does not reflect this, however I do possess an Artemio set with coastal icons and luckily many of the images fit (yes more luck than design, however next time I try this I will think a bit first about the images I want to use and form the blocks accordingly.  I know that is common sense, but I am not known for this!). I used  black Archival to stamp the images and then a fineliner to add a little lettering of my own.
I hope you like my take on patchwork and I will be entering it into the following challenges.......
The sea challenge  at Thats Crafty
Feature a creature
A perfect Mess

Thursday, 12 May 2016

Go figure!

Welcome back to my parlour! It has been a little quiet on the western front as I have been a tad off colour for a few days. However today I managed to drag my poorly self to my messy corner for a little "colour therapy"....that is a thing is it not?
I have had this idea in my head for a while now, well when I say idea I really mean little glimmers of "ooh I wanna try that"  that I have collected and put together for this journal page.  
The first glimmeration  was to use a Gelli plate. The 1st problem with this is I don't have one! Now many friends sing its praises but I have yet to fall at the alter of the Gelli. And I didn't want to fork out £30.00 on something I am not totally convinced about. (just think of all the goodies you can get with £30.00!) ....so, ....I made one! I cant remember now who's recipe it was, (sorry) but it involved 9 packets of gelatin and 380 ml glycerine. Make up the gelatin as instructed, add the glycerine then pour into a square Ferrero Roche box lined with cling film.  Allow to set and cure for 24 hours.  Oh my gosh! My house smelled of cows -gladly this did dissipate as the gelli set. And it worked!  I used PaperArtsey Fresco paints on my Gelli, adding a little Satin Glaze to make the work time a little longer. The background on this page was about print 26 of that first night ..yes I did get carried away, (but I do love using stencils and such like!) So much so that I ran out of my normal paper, then I used some photographic paper and that is where it all went pear shaped. The paper stuck like the proverbial to a blanket. As I pulled it off I took chunks of the plate with it....devastated is probably to strong a word, but I was disappointed. But for an outlay of £6  it's not the end of the world. I am going to try again, this time avoiding photo paper like the plague! Also, I wont use cling film as this adds a few wrinkles to one side, which in some ways is nice as it adds a  little texture, but I would prefer to choose to do that. Instead I will use some acetate. Also, if you are going to try this, do not whisk the mix as it adds air bubbles...you don't want them settling on the top. 
The 2nd was using a Croquis (the female form to the uninitiated!). Vicky Papaionnou used one in her journal If you love the rainbow. She suggested the book Collage Couture by Julie Nutting which has tutorials in drawing a croquis and different styles of clothes. They are all very stylised and just right for my page. So, I spent best part of the afternoon trying to draw what seemed to be quite a simple figure!  I finally managed to get one that was fairly ok...but it was much too big - I can't seem to draw small! Ahha! this is where the tech head in me came to the rescue...I photo copied it then shrunk it! Fab!  So I copied and printed a couple, 1 on craft card and another on paper. Then ( sorry I know this is getting very long winded! Skip to the end if you are bored, but please leave a comment) then, I cut the paper skirt, top and shoes out and traced around them onto a another gelli print. These were then cut out and pieced onto the craft card croquis to add colour. 
The 3rd (and last) was to use the Faux Leather technique we learned at Craft2gether a few years back. Again, using craft card, I spritzed the card with a mix of glycerine and water (6:1) massaged this in then screwed up the card careful not to tear it. Repeat, the add DI Vintage Photo to the raised creases and spritz once more to move the ink. I left it outside to dry then set about drawing the suitcases and adding shadows with a Stabillo All pencil. Then bish bash bosh I stuck it all together! Et Viola! Complete......not a quick project, but I loved doing it. 
I am going to enter it into the following challenges:
Thats Crafty Go Figure
Countryview challenge use a stencil
Stencil Sunday #44 + May Mixed Media Challenge
Stampotique Scribbles

Friday, 29 April 2016


Welcome back to my little corner of the sofa. I asked Saph to move over for you but as usual she is being very stubborn ( How can reasonably small creatures be so hard to move? Its like she has hidden suction. I have to leap into bed and pull the covers up before she jumps up otherwise I dont have a hope of staying warm and draught free!) Well, that is enough of my ramblings....
Today's offering is actually a by product of last weeks craft club technique ( or should I say I worked for hours on this composition???) . This card was underneath the paper I was working on and the marks are "overspill" of paint!  My partner in crime,  Trish, forbade me to spoil it and mentioned that the PaperArtsy challenge this week is 'White Space'. Now I would have felt a complete cheat entering it as was, so I stamped a butterfly on some card I painted with the same colours of the stripes cut him out. As usual, his antennae came to an untimely end, however I drew in a couple of prostheses for him once I curled his wings and stuck his body down. He seems fairly happy with them. I then stamped the saying, using a stamp positioner as I am invariably wonky. It turns out that even using a stamp positioner  I am invariably wonky! Then I used a fine liner to add a border around both the edge of the card and around the sentiment which helped to disguise my wonky leanings.  I am very pleased with the result, I hope you like it. 
Please dont be shy, say hello, and I hope you have a wonderful Bank holiday weekend.

Entered into challenges:
white space

Sunday, 24 April 2016

Its all about the Face

I did warn you didn't I!  For years my go to doodle has always been a solitary eye, but they never really got any better and tended towards a cartoony appearance. Last year I taught myself to crochet (Very basic) via YouTube so I had the bright idea to use it for faces! Well here I am with a page that I started a while ago as a practice piece (from a You Tube tute). The eagle eyed among you will notice that there are some bits missing - as I said, I am just learning and haven't learnt how to do cheeks yet!
 I actually liked it as is and was a little nervous to do any more in case I spoiled it. Then, lo and behold, Thats Crafty chose Faces as this fortnights prompt for their challenge. I didnt want to enter her  "naked" , so I used clear gesso to seal the pencil then applied Fresco finish over the top, first with yellow and orange, then Irish cream, using a wet wipe to remove the paint from areas I wanted her to look clearer.
I finish off by adding a very light application of red for the lips, doodled for the frame then backed it onto black.  I am pleased with the result. So what do you think? Dont be shy, knock on the door and leave me a comment.....generally its good for the ego you know!

I am entering this into 
Craft for the Craic

Saturday, 23 April 2016


Hello there my bloggy friends! Nearly 2 weeks since a post....blame work, I do! I love what I do, however it really effects my crafty mojo. I started a project last weekend, hoping to have that ready to show you last Sunday, well that obviously didn't happen did it? In fact I only finished it this afternoon and I am still not overly enamoured with it. It was one of those projects that in my head looked fab, to be honest it should have stayed that way...in my head! So I finished it and pushed it aside to enable me to get on with what I really wanted to do!
Now, have I mentioned Lynne before? This very talented lady runs the Craft2gether club at Feering on the 1st Monday of the month. I can't tell you how much I look forward to this each month, always something new to learn and friends to chat to as we do so!  This month our project was based on the technique  Faux screen printing Lynne observed Kim Dellow demonstrating at at a retailers workshop.
At club I chose some Fresco finish paint colours and set about applying the colour with a credit card. I enjoyed this process so I did it again, and again, and again...and a few more times after that!Others were busily finishing their projects whereas I went on a wallpaper spree! (thats what I call it when I just concentrate on lots of backgrounds. Well concentrate is a wrong choice of word as I do anything BUT concentrate!). Then today I reaped the rewards.....

I can add these to my art journal or they can be used for cards...one very happy, relaxed bunny! Thank you for joining me once again, and you never know, there might be another visit tomorrow! (After all, it is the weekend!)

Entered into following challenges:
MAWTT   Spring flowers

Stampotique Nature

Sunday, 10 April 2016

Journal Club

Hello my friends! Last Monday was the last Journal Club with The Fantastic Mrs Fox (see what I did there?).   Carol Fox has not only introduced me to journalling, but also has shown me so many different techniques to lay down colour, doodle and highlight, I shall be forever grateful! So as a little thank you I wanted to show you a few of the pages I completed at Carol's classes.....
Using our fingers to lay down the paint, building up the background with stencilled gesso and gelatoes. The girl was stamped separately and coloured with polychromos (3 attempts to get her right!) 

This is the same technique - I love this quote. 

Looking at this on on the PC,  my Cheshire cat's eyes and smile on the left page look like an orange monster!

Teeshamore Collage. Boy was this fun! We had pages and pages of images, quotes and words to choose from...the hardest part was whittling down to just a few. I decided not to go for a run of the mill quote, instead choosing to play silly sentences (getting ready to go back to work I suppose). 

These are just a few of the pages I completed based on Carol's designs.  Pop along to her blog http://gingernonutsbits.blogspot.co.uk/ and have a gander at her creations, she is one clever cat!
Once again I would like to thank you for popping in (and drinking all my coffee!) and I look forward to seeing you next time.

Friday, 8 April 2016

Colour me happy

Good evening, I hope you are all doing just dandy out there. My offering today is a funky little journal page that was easy and fun to do...just as crafting should be! 
My background was formed on...now I could be arty and say Deli paper, however that would not be the truth! It was some packaging tissue that surrounded my new bedroom ornaments that I ordered from Next. They were very safe in their protection, generous beyond belief, so I probably have enough to last best part of the year! I selected 4 or 5 PaperArtsy Fresco colours and 3 paintbrushes of random widths and set to work.
I randomly brushed horizontal stripes onto my tissue using the different brushes and colours trying not to blend them until the sheet was covered. The tissue coped well with the paint which was a pleasant surprise!  Then using the same colours I stamped and stencilled over the whole sheet randomly,  adding some depth with a little black stencilling. Then, finally, using a little Snowflake and a small brayer I "knocked" it back in places. 
 And viola! Background.....ooops excuse me...Masterboard .....finished!
Back to my trusty Weetabix box (it is just as well I have 2 teenage boys that eat  mahoosive amounts of cereal! ),  cut it down to 8"x 8",  gessoed and dried before  using matt medium to stick a section of the masterboard onto it. 
So far so fabulous! Very happy with what I had achieved thus far, I then blocked! Yep, too good to be true! I had no idea where to go next. So I didn't, I placed it on the side and waited, and waited and waited some more.....
3 days later, whilst contemplating whether to clean the bathroom or not - BING! Light bulb moment! With a Dylusions stamp I created a border around the edge with Black Archival, filling in the small gaps with a black pen. Using the stencil I drew around it onto some black card and stuck it down with the matt medium, with her toe resting on the border. I thought the quote was quite fitting as my lady is in silhouette. I added a little shading around the different elements and Bingo - Complete! 
I would love to hear what you think.
And by the way, I still haven't cleaned the bathroom!

I am entering this into the following challenges:
Thats Crafty Challenge Bright, Bold and Beautiful
Stamping Sensations One for the girls

Wednesday, 6 April 2016

Paris in Spring

Hello again! Today I bring you Paris in Spring...I have been working on this on and off for the last few days (that long? I hear you say) Yes that long.  I had an idea, and that is always a bad sign as usually I just start with either a stamp or some colours that I want to work with and the project just evolves.  When I have an idea...well lets say I have difficulties in the translation!
I am still not sure whether I am happy with it as I am still raw from the emotional journey...haha just kidding...though the first bit is true. 
The background is 4 x Paperartsy Frescos ( these are my favourites) applied with cut and dry. I kept layering up the colours until I achieved the blend and effect that I wanted. I then stamped in the same paint colours using a variety of background stamps...this part I am very happy with!  Then using a selection of browns from the same range I coloured another piece of card onto which I stamped the tags and the Eiffel Tower, cut them out and edged with some Vintage Photo Distress Ink. Using an embossing pen I wrote on each tag Romance and Love and embossed with Vintage Frantage (unfortunately it didn't look very Vintage) and then wrote Paris in Spring and embossed with the same ( not happy with my writing either!) 
Then I gathered together the flowers, leaves, grey board flourishes I wanted to use and various embellishments that I distressed with some texture sand paste and paint. I played around until I found an arrangement that I was pleased with...this is what took days! That and the fact either Borrowers or Fairies keep running away with essential pieces of kit (my scissors still haven't turned up!) , family wanted dinner, Saph needed walking, yadayadayada...
Anyways, back on topic...Despite the colours being harmonious they just didn't look quite right together...so I glued them all down anyway...then knocked it all back with a coat of diluted gesso.  I think this pulled it all together - what do you think? I then distressed the edges of the board and the tags and added Vintage Photo Distress Ink, then doodled around the edge to frame. 
Thank you once again for popping over, next time give me a little notice and I'll have some nibbles ready.. 

I am entering into these challenges:

Saturday, 2 April 2016

Spring has Sprung

That is an original title isnt it? I think thousands of posts published today here in Blogland have used that title today, well I never promised to be original did I?
I have had a lovely crafty day accompanied by my pal from the naughty corner, Trish. No pressures, no plans or deadlines, just grabbed some paint and off we went!
Amidst the chat, lunch (chicken wraps with sweet chilli mayo= yummy) copious mugs of coffee (and the resulting trips to the loo) we did actually achieve some good work!
I produced this Spring journal piece whilst my partner in crime raced ahead and had had at least 3 pages on the go all  of which are fabulous and all very different, but unfinished ....nicky nicky nah nah! (sorry, but that is our level of intelligent chat!)
To begin with I layed colour down with a brayer using Leandra's (from PaperArtsy) technique ( corner, corner, side) with Fresco Snowflake, Tango and Limelight. It took quite a few layers as the brown of the weetabix box kept showing through (yes, I know,  only the finest of substrates used in this house!) With hindsight, I think I should have gessoed first, which would have allowed the translucent Tango and Limelight to really Pop (I promised myself I would never say that!)   Using the same paint colours, I then used various background stencils to build up the background. Using white gesso I stencilled with the circular Dinky stencil around the top of the page in an arch and highlighted with a white pen.  Trish had some spare diluted green paint which she kindly splattered over the background, and I added some splatted white to balance it out. Then using the Decoart Texture Paste (my personal favourite) through a Tim Holtz stencil I padded out the background with the aim to having these in silhouette. However by the time it was dry - which wasnt long as I used my trusty heat tool - I had changed my mind. Laying the stencil back over, I added a a couple of the Fresco greens to the paste. The flowers are Tim Holtz beauties, that I stamped many times onto card (white this time not Weetabix!) and coloured with my beloved Polychromos. My first was yellow, but it was lost on the background, so I then chose a mix of dark orange and reds, which in the photo look all orange! The flower heads were stuck into place with some 3D gel  and Cosmic Shimmer for the stems. The word was stamped with my bargain alphabet stamps (£1.64 from China!) and the page was finished with a doodle around the edge. I am very pleased with the page (it looks better than my photo - honest) and when I look back in my journal it will remind me of the lovely day I had whilst making it.  Have a good weekend and I hope to see you back here next time. In the meantime, be kind and say hello....everybody needs some lurve!

I have entered this into the following challenges:
http://craftstamper.blogspot.co.uk/Take it make it Challenge
moo-mania.blogspot.co.uk Spring

Friday, 1 April 2016

Crazy Birds

Hello my lovelies, here I am again! Don't get used to such frequent posts, or indeed live in fear of them, it is the school holidays and I am enjoying some play time!
I practised the brayer technique again this time with the purply tones of the PaperArtsy Fresco range with a little hit of Bubblegum pink. These are my go to colours, I am unashamedly a pink and purple gal, however I will try variation so not to bore you to tears!  This time I used a variety of stencils to provide extra texture, using the Fresco paint applied with some cut and dry. I tend to use analogous colours (ooooh get me) , those that are next to each other on the colour wheel, as these create a more harmonious design that I am comfortable with. 
I have been itching to use these Crazy Birds from Tim Holtz, you have to admit it, they are undeniably cute. I chose 3 and stamped them repeatedly on a spare piece of card in black Archival and heat set with a blast from my heat tool. I then coloured them with my Polychromos in a range of colours as at this point I still didn't know how I was going to use them! As I was colouring I noticed 2 of the birds shared a view point and so the design fell into place. 
I cut out the birds,  this time amputating all their legs and hair quiffs (I am going to be known as the Butcher of Heybridge before long) as they were too tricky to cut out. I gave the yellow bird (Shane MacGowan) a branch to hang from using the Dylusion stamp (Round the Edge Dyan Reaveley) and then stuck the other birdies (Elvis and Phil Collins) into place. I drew back their legs and quiffs, not as good as Mr Holtz I admit, but they seemed happy enough and  grounded them with a few flicks of the paintbrush for grass. I wrote the quip on a separate piece of card with a black micro pen and added a few highlights with white. After cutting them out I applied some black ink around the edge and stuck them into place with cosmic shimmer.  The piece was finished off by inking around the edge and a doodle border.  
As usual, my photo doesn't show the full vibrancy of the colours I have used, (note to self, watch some Youtube vids!), but hey ho. Thank you for taking the time to read my mutterings and I look forward to chatting to you again. xx

Entered for the following Challenges:

Thats Crafty All things bright and Beautiful

Monday, 28 March 2016

Red and green should never be seen

I hope you have all had a Good Easter break and that Storm Katie hasn't kept you busy repairing damage to your garden fences etc. We have been lucky, our fences are still erect, though we seem to have gained some else's felt roof, and a bucket!
A few weeks ago it was my birthday and my fabulous family gifted me some spondoodlies to spend as I wish. So off to my favourite craft shop I went ( That's Crafty run by the lovely Laura) and filled my basket to my hearts content. However with life being life, today has been the first chance I have had to play. So, with a nice hot cup of tea and some Easter Eggs for sustenance I set myself up in my craft area (aka the kitchen table) and hey presto....my mind went blank! Drinking the tea and eating the chocolate didn't help so I had a browse of the various blogs and found that That's Crafty run a challenge, this months being Red and Green, so hey ho ......
I began by brayering a background with PaperArtsy Fresco paints (Hey Pesto, Guacamole, Tinned Peas and Cheesecake, then began building on the background  with various texture stamps and used a couple of bottle tops to stamp the larger circles. Using black Archival I stamped Dylusion Fancy Floral flowers and stems then filled in the gaps of of my dodgy stamping with a black pen and extended the stems until they joined in all the right places. I first painted them with the Fresco paints, and then I added shading with a selection of Polychromo pencils ( that you cant see because my photography skills are pants!). With great trepidation (wonky is my middle name) I stamped the quote (from Rogue Redhead Designs Floriculture) in black Archival (phwew it was reasonably straight) at the top. I wanted a bee for balance and to fit in with the quote, however the stamps I possessed were either too big, too small or the wrong style so I had a go at drawing one! Rather pleased with my squillionth attempt I painted him and cut him out (I shall name him Baldrick as I am watching Rowan Atkinson in Maigret as I am writing this and I keep expecting Baldrick to pop up with "I have a cunning plan"....) stuck him in place with Cosmic Shimmer and drew on his antennae that I accidently amputated while cutting him out! I edged the page with Forest Moss Distress Ink and then doodled around the edge with my black pen. I hope you like it and can forgive my ineptitude with the camera, and please be gentle about Baldrick!

Entered into the following challenges:

That's Crafty Red and Green should never be seen?
Moving along with the times
The Artistic Stamper Springtime

Saturday, 12 March 2016


Hello to all my crafty friends ( all 3 of you!)
Today I have taken the big step/leap/dive into the world of Blogdom....scary. I am hoping I will remember  

  •  That I have a blog 
  •  To write something on it
  • To create things worth blogging 

Not sure what my chances are, but hey ho lets give it a go!
First a little about me......
My name is Debbie and I am happily married  to my soul mate (when you have finished reading that bit and chucked up into the waste paper bin please carry on) and we have 2 teenage sons, a Cocker Spaniel,  Saphy,  (who forgets she is a dog unless she is scaring the postman, eating purveyors of junk mail or chasing the other two inhabitants of the house) Wes and Bubbles,  cats, who are sisters and heartily dislike each other. Their dislike of each other is only matched by their hatred of Saphy!
I have been into crafting for the past 4 years or so and still class myself as a beginner, with so much to learn. I began with card making as so many do, and as time went on developed interests in Mixed Media and Journalling. I don't really have a 'style'  as I am willing to have a go at most things,from grunge to shabby, but I do like 'pretty' and my go to colour choices are cottage garden flower colours; pinks, purples, lilacs, blues, yellows and oranges. If there was one thing  in the whole world I could have, craft wise, it would most definitely be MORE TIME!  I have so many things that I want to try, or projects that I want to do, that when I do get a little time to myself I become so overwhelmed with what to do,  I generally go and have a coffee...then someone comes in and says "what's for dinner?" and I am back to square one. That is the main reason I didn't blog, as I wanted to "do" with the little time I have  rather that write about it! However, I have come to the conclusion that by having a blog, I can enter challenges more easily, therefore will be more focussed on creating...lets see eh?