Monday, 31 August 2009


This is for Rainbow Lady's latest challenge, to use acetate on a card, and it also fits with this month's challenge of the Joanna Sheen forum, which was to use something old - the Clarity stamp (Irish prayer?) was one of the first Clarity stamps I bought, and is so old it is a delicate shade of yellow now - it has been hidden in a drawer for ages. The asymmetrical gatefold card has been stamped with Elusive Images wild meadow stamps, which have also been used for the acetate which forms the pocket for the book mark and a strip along the other flap. The tag was first brayered with I think waterfall ink pad, then stamped with the wild meadow stamp usinga green ink, then over stamped in black with the prayer.

Friday, 28 August 2009

inky at graphicus

Have just got back from a workshop with Lesley at Graphicus, finding out how to use a brayer properly, and getting extremely inky in the process! We mostly used the big'n'juicy and kaleidocolour ink pads, and loads of glossy card and even more copy paper! There were 7 of us, though we were so quiet they kept checking to see if we were still there - just shows how much concentration was needed - think it took about an hour (and a lot of coffee) before anyone managed to get a decent-looking background, then we moved on to the textures in the first set of scans. Textures were a lot more forgiving, and we were all pleased with the results using wallpaper samples - especially as we found out that adding the texture on top of a previously rubbish background did an awful lot to improve it!

After a pause for lunch - mine came from Mr Buns, the mobile sandwich van that arrives each morning on the industrial site, and I can thoroughly recommend the tuna salad - Lesley let us loose to create a reflection using Clarity stamps. This was slower going, but we all managed to get a decent reflected image using the brayer to transfer the image, then adding water via cling film,the moon and finally foliage round the edges. It was surprising how different they all looked, even between the two of us who used the same waterfall ink pad - several had almost surreal and alien effects, but they all looked great! I only had a very basic camera with me, and the photos I took were rubbish, which was a shame.

Next, Lesley showed us how she created a landscape using rubber bands round the brayer - after a morning remembering not to put pressure on the brayer, we all found it awkward to press hard enough to get a decent image this time, so we got through quite a bit more card before we all had something we were ok with. After a lot of work with sponges and Elusive Images tree stamps, we ended with a sort-of park scene. It was surprising how many effects you can get out of one inkpad, even if it was a five colour one to begin with. As a finale, we all created a stampbord pendant, using UTE , metallic ink pads and a fairly large Clarity stamp. Mine used a bronze UTE, sprinkled with silver and red dragon powder on the final layer, before stamping with gold metallic encore ink.
Those who used black UTE as a base ended up with very dramatic results
When Glenda and Lynn came to see the results, they couldn't believe how inky I got - I couldn't either, especially when I realised just how far up my arm the ink went! I did eventually work how how I had done that, though I still can't quite believe how inky my hands got - and yes, it did all come off eventually!

All in all, I had a lovely time at Graphicus - even if I did have a slight shock when my bill was added up after a browse round the shop, and I didn't even make a dent in the wish list! Most of it was essentials, like the brayer, ink pads, glossy postcards but I did treat myself to the Christmas tree stamps after ruthlessly ignoring the lovely Christmas bears.
(ignore the date stamp on the horror photo - I dropped the camera and it chose its own date)

Monday, 17 August 2009

dragon cards

Rainbow Lady's challenge this week is for something with a dragon on - so here is a dragon card faturing one of the dragons from the Elusive Images set.
This actually was the second card, the first attempts drove me mad, so I opted for the easy way! The dragon was inked with black brilliance ink and stamped into a piece of triple embossed card - well, more like 5 layers actually! The card was stamped with an Encore metallic inkpad called enchanted evening, then clear embossed 3 times; a layer of chunky embossing crystals in verdigris from Once Upon a Stamp was next, then a final layer of clear before the stamp was used. I used the sketch from this week's Corrosive Challenge blog for inspiration - the backing paper came from my Graphicus Guild pack (I really must start printing some out, rather than being lazy).

Having bought some Viva pearl pens on sale at Jarrolds a couple of months ago, I decided to live dangerously and try a tip from Glenda Waterworth on one of her recent shows on Create & Craft - basically covering a stamp with the pearl, leaving it to dry, then you get a triple-embossed effect. The first several goes resulted in bits of dragons - none big enough to be useable - then I discovered that you need to put the paint on thickly, and really leave it to dry, preferably at least overnight, then peel the stamp off very carefully. This time I got a useable dragon - admittedly minus the last bit of his tail! - so did another card, using the same sketch, before he got damaged any further, because I really liked the effect. Backing paper is again from the Guild pack Nett result is 2 empty tubes of pearl (copper and bronze), one heap of dragon bits, and 2 rather battered stamps - somehow the pearl got under the stamps in places, so now I need to remove the Klingon backing and remount them - grrr.

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

latest challenge (and Cuthbert)

This is my card for the latest challenge from movingalongwiththetimes - I've changed the sketch a fair bit though! The bear comes from the Bubble & Squeak set of stamps - i'm never sure which is which with these, but it is a cute bear all the same. It was coloured with pencils again, then cut out and mounted on a diamond of paper from my Graphicus Guild pack, then matted onto gold mirri card. The flowers were punched from scraps of the same paper, and the vellum strips were from a agazine freebie.

Having done ths one, I decided to see if the same layout would work with the Cuthbert bear stamp from Elusive Images. I stamped the bear, and coloured him with pencils, then cut him out minus the flag he holds in the original. The balloon came from the Bubble & Squeak plate, cut out and slipped into Cuthbert's hand. The backgroiund stamp is also from Cuthbert, again coloured with watercolour pencils and matted onto some blue paper - the flowers were punched from the same paper. this time I put the bear at the bottom left, and he was stuck on with glue gel to give him some dimension

Monday, 10 August 2009

wedding/anniversary cards

I had to make an anniversary card, and a wedding card recently - as I did not know either of the recipients, I made some fairly multi-purpose cards and these were the left-overs! They have made it onto the blog as that just happens to be the challenge this week on the Corrosive Challenge blog. They both use stamps from the Elusive Images Harlequin Rose plate, and didn't have a sentiment added so that could be personalised later.
The silver one used the big rose stamp, stamped in versamark onto a dark silver/grey card and embossed with a clear holographic powder. The diamonds, rose and swirl were brushed with bleach, which came out rather beige-y - fortunately, when I added more bleach to the swirl and the rose the colour became a lot lighter, and the rose eventually became white. H2O paints were used on the leaves and on the script background, before matting onto several layers of white and silver card.
The second card used the leafy heart stamp- stamped onto two different colours of gold card, embossed with gold powder. the images were cut out then twined together and mounted on gold mirri card. This was matted onto a sheet of paper from the Graphicus Guild, then onto more gold before going onto a cream card

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

having a change

I find 'man' cards quite difficult , so decided to have a go when I found this challenge site - movingalongwiththetimes (which used to be Daisy and Dandelion apparently, and has now spread its wings a bit) which had a sketch for inspiration. I started to tidy up the craft space so that my daughter will be able to reach the bed to sleep at the weekend, and found some Elusive Images stamps that I had forgotten I had, and somehow this card resulted - and no, the tidying hasn't got any further!

The background was a Tim Holtz stamp from the urban tapestry set stamped in DI old paper and then over stamped in weathered wood, but a bit off. The fish was stamped in blue jeans, and gone over slightly with a waterbrush - the circle is cut from paper printed from an Artylicious cd - I think it was the seasons' greetings one, but not sure now, as it was also something I found.

These two cards use digital images from Mo's digital pencil,
with illustrations by Mo Manning , a site I found when bloghopping - I couldn't resist this gorgeous kitten Sinatra, the more so as he was a freebie! Looking through the site I also found this cheeky monkey, which was also a freebie - I had great fun colouring them both in with watercolour pencils while waiting for cakes to finish baking. Many thanks to Judith for providing the link to this lovely blog - it is the first time I have tried digital images, and somehow I don't think it will be the last.