Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Tim Holtz Technique Tag and Proud News

This Christmas tag was made using a great Tim Holtz technique and foil tape (do buy this book if you don't own it already, it is a brilliant source of inspiration) Out of respect to Tim, the technique will not be described here. This was the first time I had used the foil tape and it is fabby dabby doo to work with. I am entering this into the lovely technique challenge at Studio L3 and Lisa Somerville's Bloggers Challenge - Christmas in July. I am also entering this into the Anything Goes challenge at Fashionable Stamping challenges
Studio L3    Christmas in July        T!m Holtz   Anything Goes

My proud news? I've been published for the first time and I couldn't be happier. I have surely been Futterwaken down in Hove (no it's not rude! tis a dance from Alice in Wonderland) I have an article coming up in Craft Stamper... peeps who subscribe are getting their copies now, otherwise it comes out on August 3rd 
I'm on page 38, I think I shall make that my new lucky number!

 Honestly, if this is one of your dreams (um, to get yourself published, not me getting published, that's MY dream... and I'm not done with it yet, although you are quite welcome to dream me getting published AGAIN if you've nowt better to do with your time... or you are really kind... or a Wish Fairy!)  please GO for it. Life is short and wonderful things can happen if you try, but, you've got to try. Eight month's ago, I didn't even have a blog, now I look at people's work from all over the world and am inspired to dream my little arty dreams in TECHNICOLOUR. For this, I thank the blogging world so very much... off to Futterwack a bit more now.

Sunday, 29 July 2012

2nd Star on the right, Straight on till morning

Before my current career, I worked for 7 years in Wardrobe Departments in the Theatre, mainly based in the West End of London, so I love a good bit of theatre and spectacle!  It goes without saying that I  absolutely adored Olympic Creative Director Danny Boyle's glorious Olympic Opening Ceremony on Friday night. It was an absolute triumph for the creative arts. 
My 'best bits?' Oh, so many... The smokestacks rising atop idylic England, Sir Kenneth Branagh's reading of Caliban's speech, the Queen and James Bond! (How awesomely sporting is she?) Dame Evlyn Glennie leading the thousand  Drummers and super best bit... the Olympic Cauldron itself, a total triumph for the charismatic (and rather gorgeous) designer Thomas Heatherwick.... google him and you will read for DAYS!
So this little tag is my tribute to the Olympics... and it was a BEAST to take piccies of, just couldn't capture the gold and silver!
The 'faux leather' tag was inspired by Anita Houston's brilliant video tutorial yesterday (I think you should have got that phone to ring again Anita, it could've become a trademark!!) This is a really amazing technique which was taught to Anita at Ranger U by the God of Grunge himself, the amazing Tim Holtz and I liked it so much I used it straight away to make 3 backgrounds... the one on the right was then used for this tag. This picture was taken before I pounced and ironed! Here is the link to Anita's Tutorial post:  Faux Leather Tutorial
I used a mixture of Tim Holtz stamps to create the background, all stamped with Ranger Jet Black Archival Ink. The 3 gentlemen and those funky circles both reminded me of the opening ceremony and seemed to be the right ones to use. The rising sun seemed a fitting tribute too (Oh, what an old romantic I  turned out to be)

I used brads and Glassine paper to create my own Olympic sign... couldn't quite get that blue right though, but I am strangely proud of my little creation.
I added one of my own reinforced burlap flowers and gave it lots of gold around the edges (my tutorial to make these is here:)   My tutorial The bike reminded me of those extraordinary winged cyclists going around the arena towards the end of the show and also is there to represent sports generally. I had so much fun making this (well, when don't I?) I just had to take an extra photo showing our colours...
I am entering this into a few of my favourite challenges
The ever inspiring Sunday Stampers Challenge 'gold' Fields of Gold
Anything goes at Fashionable Stamping Challenges - Happy One Year birthday to you (so annoyed I didn't see the DT call for the New Challenge... I would have been brave and applied. I love this site, it is always squished full of inspiration and has an amazing DT) do check them out if you are not yet familiar with them. Anything goes and Anything goes at: Simon Says Stamp

Friday, 27 July 2012

Gloriana, Olympic Barge has arrived at Tower Bridge

Normally, as you know if you visit my blog, I only blog my crafts, however History is in the making here. As with the Queen's Jubilee it is so important I wished to proudly record it.The Gloriana rowbarge with the Olympic flame on board has arrived at Tower Bridge and is heading over towards the floating Olympic rings moored on the Thames. There, 22 year-old Amber Charles from Newham who was part of London's Olympic bid aged 14, will carry the lit torch. 
Did you know? That torch  has 8000 holes in it representing the 8000 miles that it has travelled and the 8000 people who have had the honour of carrying it... How cool is that? 
Now where's that little flag we got for the Jubilee? I shall find it and probably wave it while I watch the ceremony... 
Who will carry the torch on it's very final leg to the cauldron? Care to take a guess with me? Here's 3 of mine James Bond? (Daniel Craig) Harry Potter? (Daniel Radcliffe) Well,  what about a Wild Card guess? there was a great episode of Dr Who some years ago with David Tennant carrying the flag into the Olympic Stadium... you never know! After all it is directed by Danny Boyle 
This has bought a proud tear to my eye, soft thing that I am!  Looking forward to the ceremony this evening, proud to have seen the torch in Hove. Good Luck to ALL Thanks to the BBC for their great coverage today, fab live feed, using 'Heroes' (David Bowie) as background for one of the montages is a nice touch too... I may update this post during the day
A proud family moment - we got to see the torch for real

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Mini Tutorial - Non Fraying Burlap Grunge Flowers

I  had a little moment of inspiration and thought I'd share!
    I love making my own fabric flowers, you can produce them so inexpensively. Neutral fabrics, like Calico's and Burlap's (like sacking) are fun to use, but die cut Burlap seems to fray really badly. I found my T!m Holtz Tattered Florals die cut really beautiful Burlap flowers that promptly fell apart when I tried to shape them, Burlap is an extremely loosely woven fabric.
   I have found a solution (there are most likely others and like everything else this has probably been done already, so forgive me if I am re inventing the wheel here!) Some of my followers are extremely experienced bloggers and crafters, others, less so. I have decided that I shall start sharing a few really simple tips with the blogging world, I really hope that you like them and would love to hear your comments...

Here we go... it's short and sweet!
  • Firstly, dig out some PVA Medium and a large paintbrush.
  •  Place a large piece of burlap on top of a plastic cloth, or similar.
  • Paint one side of the burlap with the PVA and allow to dry completely, remember to wash your brush afterwards.
  • Die cut your floral die of choice.
  • Try stamping the burlap with Archival Ink to add interest. Or... press into a matching/toning Distress Ink.
  • Play with the layers and  petals till you achieve a pleasing effect.... then fasten with a Brad or Button.
Note... The more thickly you apply the PVA, the more  you will be able to mold and shape your flower petals.
Ta Dah! Pretty, unique, inexpensive flowers, totally customisable for your own projects.

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Fashion, Beep Beep, Fashion!

   Well! little did I know when I started making this tag, that a song would get lodged in my head and would end up changing the making fairly substantially. Recently, there have been a series of David Bowie concerts and documentaries on the BBC and I've watched them avidly as Bowie was such an influence on me during my teens and twenties. Still love his music now actually. Well, as I was hunting out the glitter card and my T!m Holtz dress form Die, the classic song Fashion (1980) popped into my head and got firmly fixed there, it's still there, I even Googled the lyrics! I tend to roll with these things, so I wrote chunks of them all over the tag and totally changed what I was going to do. I'm delighted with how this tag turned out and I'm still quietly singing that song... 
    I started with a plain white tag and covered it with Chipped Sapphire Distress Ink using a blending tool and then flicked it with water a la T!m Holtz. The background was then ghost stamped with a Rogue Redhead Designs Stamp and Picket Fence Distress Stain (I am totally hooked on stamping with this at the moment) I hand wrote lyrics all around the edges of the tag and added 3 T!m Holtz dress forms. I wanted to keep the tag simple as it didn't seem to need much else in the way of adornment. 
   I am entering this into several challenges, one of which is new for me. It fits nicely into Hels' Sunday Stamper Challenge 'More than words' as well as the Die Cut challenge at another of my favourite sites, Bloggers Challenge. I am also entering this into the Analogous colours challenge at Make My Monday (Oh yes, I now know what the word analogous means!) and the Hey Girl Challenge at the lovely Simon Says Stamp And Show.
   It's been another lovely warm day down here on the South Coast... Summer is outside the building! I had such fun making this tag and I was so pleased with the outcome, I'm still thinking of songs... mmmmm.... might be the B52's next, that, or GOTYE... or both!

Make My Monday Challenge
Simon Says Stamp and Show - Hey Girl


Sunday, 22 July 2012

Another use for a Dyan Reaveley House!

After finishing my first Christmas project yesterday, I had one remaining Dyan (Rainbow) Reaveley house cut out... Now, waste not want not. Whod've thunk that it would turn into a cute slinky little dress? (Um, not me probably) creating this tag  made me smile, I hope it makes you smile too! Just realised, she looks quite '80's' with those shoulder pads!

Saturday, 21 July 2012

Dyan Reaveley Christmas Village!

Inspired by seeing all the new Christmas items from CHA (have you seen the fabulous photo's on T!m Holtz's blog? totally inspirational!) I actually made my first little Christmas offering this dull and dreary afternoon down on the South Coast of England. I surprised myself actually! normally, I wait months before doing anything Christmassy.

 Well, for this little fun project, I re purposed a very sturdy black box that had previously held Paperchase Christmas Cards (yeah... I know, I should make all my own cards, but after Christmas they are so irresistibly inexpensive) I  stamped a dotty background onto the top and sides of the box directly from the end of my Picket Fence Distress stain... I love the shape that it makes... I got quite carried away, but I loved it :)I used lots of glossy accents, glamour dust (the most versatile glitter ever) and non traditional Christmas colours to scribble colour the cute little houses (these are so cool) with Promarkers. I used a Picket Fence Distress Marker to make it snow.
I will add a sentiment later, I enjoyed making this even though it is totally different from my normal projects. I'll try anything these days! grungy, shabby, jolly... bring it on! I will probably use it for one of my daughter's Christmas pressies, we both adore little boxes and tins. 
Blogging really broadens the horizons artistically, I think it is because those of us who blog get so much exposure to the gorgeous things other people make, that maybe we widen our own boundaries without even realising it!

Welcome to my newest followers and thank you so very much  for following - I always try to visit blogs and come visit you back if I can (some of you don't have links to a blog)

I am entering this into the Anything Goes Challenge at Simon Says Stamp, I think it has a 50's vintage feel going on. Anything Goes

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

and... Spritz and Flick! Sounds Like a Harry Potter Spell!

Fun, Fun, Fun!

I am really enjoying being able to take part in the challenges using T!m Holtz techniques over at  Studio L3 and am loving the book (thanks Anita x) Anita Houston  there will be no stopping me... Yay! This weeks challenge is sponsored by the ever generous Simon Says Stamp. Just in case you are new to stamping and have no idea who Tim Holtz is, here is a link to one of the most enjoyable web sites EVAH! T!m Holtz

This tag was made using the Spritz and Flick technique... I really love this technique, it looks so effective and you never know quite how it will turn out. I recycled and embellished the heart shaped tag to go onto my background and my colour choice was inspired by a small tag (you can see it in the third photo) sent to me for my daughter by my friend Sue. This Life  That tag, is one of my daughters favourite possessions, she fell in love with it as soon as she got it. I have the best bloggy friends in the world

Sorry for such brief posting... Blogger is still playing me up a treat :(  Every time I add a photo, it immediately alters any text I have written to look as if it is a caption... leaving my background a different colour to my text. It is really annoying, I have had to remove my lovely pale blue background to lesson the effect of it. Until I can figure it out, I will have to employ BREVITY! Aaarrgh... not good xx If any one can advise me... I would really appreciate it
I am entering this into the Anything Goes Challenge at Simon Says Stamp and also Letss get messy and iknk (or inky in my case) over at the ever lovely: Fashionable Stamping Challenges

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

The Olympic Torch in Hove

Quite the Cavalcade actually! (There were many more vehicles than in my photo's here!)

There are certain things that if missed, you are aware  the opportunity may not come round for a long long time and the Olympic Procession is one of them. We were lucky that the Olympic torch came through Brighton and Hove and quite a crowd (including us) turned out to cheer it on despite the weather. Bought a lump to the old throat and a tear to the eye...  It was well organised and such a good tempered crowd. I'm so glad we braved the elements to go a have a wave. I wish luck to ALL the athletes who take part xx

Thursday, 12 July 2012

She Sells Sea Shells by the Sea Shore!

After a short dry spell earlier, the persistent rain has set in again down here on the South Coast of England. I think this influenced a change in the tag that I started making earlier. This morning, before going out, I  cut out a large shell from some beautiful papers sent to me by my friend Sue and gave it the thickest coating of Glossy Accents... after coming home in the pouring rain.... my shell ended up getting turned into a mermaid! Although I tend to veer towards the grungy and shabby in my crafting, there are moments when I  come close to cuteness... well, why not!

I kept to the same colour palette that I used for my felt and calico tag the other day, I find blues, greens and neutrals so peaceful and calm... a little bit of tranquillity.

The tag has several layers and I cut out a frame and used Whitewash Coredinations card behind it. I altered the Tim  Holtz metal clock face (thank you Anita) and the pen nib 'body' of the butterfly with an  Adirondack Paint Dabber (Pool). I also used this to stamp the Tim Holtz lace stamp, which reminded me of waves. The rest of the stamping was done with brown Memento Ink.

Sorry my text is all bunched up together and not in between the photo's. I have been having some real problems with blogger, I had to remove my pretty background and everything! I am entering this into this weeks challenge at Frilly and Funkie for altered metal: Frilly and Funkie
and the Mermaid challenge at Unruly Paper Arts



Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Dream a Little Dream with Me!

   Something a little different for me here. This tag is stamped onto Calico, using a mixture of Memento ink and Distress pens. I attached the calico tag onto a felt tag which I had cut out (with some difficulty, it kept getting smaller because it was hard to get it straight!) I wanted to create a layered effect I was so excited to use the Tim Holtz stamp for the first time. I got it at a recent Craft Fair along with a few other TH stamps that were greatly reduced as they had been used to create samples. Considering the fact that I am such an avid stamper, I don't actually have many stamps, due to the Mortgage Companies insistence that I pay them each month! so this was a hugely exciting afternoon for us. I also used an ATC sized Tim Holtz stamp to create the worn look to the tag and add further layer's of interest. I loved the idea that the tag had been around so long that it had got blotty and inky. This tag looked really sweet using some of my daughter and I's 'beach finds as a background. I love living so near the sea, there is always something to hunt for. Recently, my daughter and I have spent ages looking for pieces of sea glass, it is so exciting to find even the tiniest piece of rounded glass with the pitted surface. Most of these have taken at least 30 years to have become worn into that shape!
I am entering this into a few challenges: Texture Challenge at Frilly and Funkie
Dreamer Challenge at Hels Sheridans lovely lovely Sunday Stamper
Say it with words at  Bloggers Challenge
Layered at Simon says Stamp

Thursday, 5 July 2012

14 years old - talented? Oh yeah baby!

This Tote Bag is one of my daughter's projects (nearly finished) and I think it fits perfectly into the texture challenge at Frilly and Funkie and the Silver challenge at The Sunday Stamper. 

It is her first challenge entry and she is very excited about it. She designed the padded Love Birds herself, they are made from felt and padded with wadding. They remind me of Portugese love bird images.  

Each button and decoration was sewn on and fastened off individually. Many of the buttons had personal significance from Els' own clothes when she was younger, or in the case of the Union Flag, a memento of the Queens Jubilee this year. 

The decorations on the black bird were Els first go at machine embroidery and they worked really well, she found machine embroidery exciting and a bit scary too!

Ooh, I nearly forgot to mention, customising bags is one of my daughter's new hobbies. I am also entering this into the Silver Dream Machine challenge over at Hels Sheridan's Sunday Stamper Challenge Silver challenge

I  love the flowers in her hair and check out that collar!

 Frilly and Funkie

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Tim Holtz Inspiration July - Several Projects

This month the technique chosen by Tim Holtz was such fun to do! it made me feel like a big kid, I couldn't stop making the backgrounds!

 First, I wanted to try and make something using red, white and blue with the 4th of July in mind, but really had to improvise with my materials as I lacked red and blue alcohol inks, the right paper and 'spray air' ( lol, pretty much everything really!) I was very happy with the end result though.

The second version I made was overstamped with Picket Fence Distress Stain to produce all the little stars in the sky - It looked like a Firework Display to me - again, I was very pleased with it. With the forthcoming London Olympics, this seemed quite timely :)

I had 3 alcohol inks that I had bought as a set - I love the richness of the colours - I used them on photo paper and created frames to use on other projects.

The background on the left hand side was made using gold mirri card. It looks very lush and dramatic in real life. The one on the right was made using much smaller dots of alcohol ink and blowing through a straw so hard I thought I was going to turn inside out!!! I've added Rock Candy Distress Stickles onto it.

I am looking forward to getting more alcohol inks in the near future as I think I will use this technique  again and again. It is one of the most versatile I have found in ages... as ever, thanks to Tim Holtz, he is such an amazing source of inspiration and encouragement.

Do visit Tims site - there is so much inspiration there. There are so many video's that are fascinating to watch.

Tim Holtz - July Challenge

I am also entering this into this weeks Blogger's challenge celebrating the 4th of July
Bloggers Challenge - Country where you live challenge (my images of London)