Saturday, 23 August 2014

ATB photo album case

I love making ATBs, it is probably my favourite crafty thing to do at the moment and so when the Frilly and funkie blog challenge was "Hip to be Square" and involved making an ATB I was really happy.

I wanted to do something that I hadn't tried before, and so I knew that I wouldn't be making "just" an ATB. It took me ages to work out what I was going to do because I wanted to make something that I would actually use. I got into paper-crafting because I wanted to document my family history and so bringing those two things together, I came up with the idea of making mini scrapbook albums and using the ATB to store them in! What I hadn't thought about was how many pages that would involve making, staining, stencilling, stamping and embellishing! All in all, including the front covers there were 80 pages!

I decided to make albums of each of my grandchildren, as they are also my favourite things! The ATB holds 5 albums and, although I have 7 grandchildren, two of them  I only see  a couple of times a year as they live so far away and I don't really have enough photos for an album each, so I decided to make albums for the 5 grandchildren I have lots of photos of and I will make another project for the other two.

The ATB was made from thin cardboard and the inside was covered with paper from Prima's Seashore range. I covered the edges in washi tape and then added Gold Rub n Buff. For the sides, I cut 6 pieces of manilla card, which I covered with pages from an old edition of "A Tale of 2 Cities" (just mentioned that as it is one of my favourite books ever). I covered these with a thin layer of gesso. Once the gesso was dry I used very thin coats of Antique Linen and Broken China Distress paint to cover the sides. After this, I used various colours of archival inks to stamp the background. I decided that as my albums were documenting the details of my grandchildren's lives then it would be appropriate to use die cuts and stamps which were connected to writing etc. - I really love the way the pile of books and quill pen came out,  it is the first time I have used it, but it certainly won't be the last.

Each album was made in the same way. I used my Silhouette Cameo to cut out 5 front covers and 40 double pages for the inside of the albums. I also cut out each of my grandchildren's names.

For the front covers I used Distress Inks in Scattered Straw and Tumbled Glass and then I stamped images connected to each individual child. For example, Caleb has been on a couple of Mediterranean cruises and loves talking about his "big boat", so I decided that would be the focus of his album. I coloured in the names with Gathered Twigs Distress stain and added them to the front of each album.

Each of the insides of the albums is different, but there are some things in common - I used the same stencils for each, the same coloured archival inks and for each child there was one page that had their date of birth. I also added a little paper envelope and a Tim Holtz Journalling Ticket for extra places to add information etc. I haven't added all of the photos yet; just the first photo in each album. I used lots and lots of rub ons in the albums, mostly Tim Holtz ones, but also some from Bo Bunny and various Tim Holtz embellishments. There are also some bits and pieces from Graphic 45's Botanical Tea range.

I didn't think anyone would want to wade through all 80 pages of the albums and so I have just put photos of some of them on here, but all of them are on my Google + if any one wants to take a peek!!

I hope you have enjoyed looking at the pictures. I had a great time making this project and I know I am going to love sitting with my grandchildren choosing which pictures and information to include in them.

I am entering this into several challenges:

Frilly and Funkie Challenge Blog - Hip to be Square. 
Stamping Sensations - Anything goes
Art with Heart Challenge - Anything goes
Vintage Utfordring  (Vintage Challenge) - Make a box
The Artistic Stamper - Anything goes
Sarah Hurley 365 - Favourite things
Inspirational Journal blog

Monday, 11 August 2014

Something natural

5 of my grandchildren were around my house this afternoon, now as much as I love them, and I really do, 5 children all aged between 18 months and 5 years can be just a little noisy and so after a couple of hours I escaped to the quiet of my bedroom and my craft space.

Yesterday I saw that the new challenge on Ink on My Fingers was "Natural colours and elements" and today I had an email to say that the new challenge on the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge is "Scratched Up". I knew I only had a short time to make something and so I was pretty happy with the project I made.

It was made on 6 inch sq mdf board, which I edged with a couple of coats of different colour distress paints and then I sanded the edges before using Walnut Stain distress ink on them.

The background paper is from Tin Holtz' Wallflower paper and I cut it down so it was smaller than the mdf board. I sanded the edges of the paper too and then added ink to the edges of that.

The framework was cut from patterned paper, inked with different shades of brown and covered with Modge Podge. Once it had dried, I then sanded bits of the frame and added Walnut stain over those parts.

The leaves and flowers are from some dried flowers I had in a flower press. I ran them through my Xyron sticker maker, which worked reasonably successfully, although I had t stick some of the leaves on by hand.

I then stamped the grass and flowers at the bottom of the plaque twice, once in green and then again n brown. I also stamped the bird and butterfly, both of which had some pink distress stain added to echo the pink in the dried flowers. Finally, I added the ribbon, wordband and string.

The frame looks really shiny in the photo, but it doesn't look too shiny in "real life".

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

A memory book

Looking through my cupboards the other day I found some Tim Holtz grunge board 6x6 album pages and I decided to make a mini album. However, things didn't work out that way and what I have ended up with is more like a completed scrapbook for a vintage trip to Paris! On one of the pages there is  a photograph of my grandmother and I have imagined that this might have been something she might have made when she was young.

On all of the pages I have used distress stains as this fits in with the current challenge at A Vintage Journey which is being sponsored by County View Crafts . I am also entering this into the challenge at Simply Create Too, which has an old or vintage theme for its current challenge. There are lots of photos here, so apologies for that, but I hope you like them.

Rather than write loads about what I did, I will just explain how I used the distress stains on each page.

Front cover

The background was made by dragging Manila card through scattered straw and antique linen distress stains, which had been put onto my crafting mat and spritzed with water. Once this was dry I stencilled distress stains using the Tim Holtz Gothic and Burlap stencils and another one, which I don't have the name for. I also used stains for colouring the ribbon.

Pages 1 and 2

Page 1

The tag for this page was spritzed with Distress ink and when it was wet I crumpled it up so it became wrinkled. I then uncrumpled and dried it. Once it was dry I lightly sponged more DS over it so that the wrinkles all showed up. The little heart is worn lipstick DS which was covered with Rock Candy crackle and the little label used yet more scattered straw DS, which is my favourite at the moment. I love the dried lavender I have used on this page, which came from a flower press I bought from a charity shop a few years ago and was full of dried flowers and leaves.

Page 2

I stuck some decoupage paper to Manila card using Modge Podge and then I sprayed it with water and added DS to it. I love the effect where some of the paper took up very little stain, but other parts of the page has lots of stain. The background card was laid into distress stain spritzed with water and then I stencilled through a Tim Holtz stencil and one of fleur des lisle that I made myself. The feather was made by diluting stain and using a brush to paint. I really like the effects of these two together.

Pages 3 and 4

Page 3

This is a photo of my paternal Grandmother, Eileen Cooper, nee Smith who I never met as she died 4 years before I was born. However, she and my Dad look so alike that I feel as though I know her. As far as I know she never went to Paris, but as I put this project together it was her I imagined as the person collecting the bits and pieces and making the book (My daughter says I am ever so slightly mad!). On this page I used DS for the flowers and leaves as well as making the age spots on the background and the frame.

Page 4

The brown background for this one was made with various brown DI stains - I believe they included vintage photo and walnut stain. The front image is a Justrite stamp and I used a brush to watercolour the image using faded Jeans DS and a variety of greens. The little label was Vintage photo DS. I love the simplicity of this page, although if you look closely you will see that I stuck the front image on upside down and the background script is therefore upside down. Luckily, the browns are dark and so the mistake is not immediately obvious!!

Pages 5 and 6

Page 5

This was the last page I made and it took me ages to decide what to do, but when I found the little Paris images I knew immediately that I wanted to include a piece of Tim Holtz' photo strip, which I love. I used DS less on this page than any other, but I used it to colour the ribbon and the background of the label. I like the combination of browns and blue and I like the addition of the embossed card stock.

Page 6

One of my own favourite memories of Paris is the magnificent Rose Window in the Notre Dame Cathedral. I loved the way the light poured through the window, lighting up the inside of the building. I was unsure about including this page as it is so different from all of the others as it is so bright, but I tried to age it and tone it down by using Vintage Photo distress ink over the top of the image. The window was coloured in using undiluted stains and a paint brush. It took ages to do and made me remember being a child and doing colouring in!

Pages 7 and 8

Page 7

I used distress stains for the background of this. the colours included Pumice Stone and Victorian Velvet. I then used Victorian Velvet distress ink which I stencilled through the Tim Holtz Harlequin layering stencil and then clear heat embossed it. The tickets were cut from a Tim Holtz die and I added the stamping including the Eiffel Tower stamp. The background of the tickets was also distress stain. The images were from a Prima Pad called Cartographer. 

Page 8

I wanted this page to be a collection of bits and pieces that might have been collected during a trip to Paris. The background is also from the Prima Cartographer pad and I added Vintage Photo and Frayed Burlap stains to it. The man at the  front was cut from a Tin Holtz paper and I coloured him in with very diluted stains, I loved the faded look of it.

Back page

This was completed in the same way as the front cover

I ended up really liking this little book as it is something that I have not done before and I was pleased with the way it turned out.

What I am enjoying about entering challenges is that I am trying out new things and practising things that I have done before. I am very new to all of this and I love learning all of the techniques and I think I am gradually becoming more adventurous in what I do.