Saturday, 11 October 2014

Lovely new dies!!

over the past weeks I have seen the new Tim Holtz layered dies popping up all over the place and I have loved all 4 that I have seen. So, flinging restraint to one side, I went out last week and bought all 4 of them.

I decided to use the butterfly, dragonfly and bee ones to make a trio of plaques to put on the dresser in my living room at home. I recently redecorated and the wallpaper that's we put on one wall is from Laura Ashley and it contains shades of blue, pink. Green and yellow, so I thought I would take 3 of those colours as the main colours in the plaques.

I used Tim Holtz foil to cut out the dies and then I thought I would try different techniques on each and see how they came out.



Each of the plaques were 6x6 squares of MDF. I painted each of them with a light cover of gesso and then dried them. For the butterfly plaque I used Victorian Velvet stain, which I watered down and fired so it was patchy. I then used the same colour ink and one of Tim Holtz stencils. I did exactly the same for the dragonfly square, using Iced Spruce stain and ink and finally the bee one was made with seedless mustard.


For the butterfly, I used various shades of distress paint and then, when they were dried, i sanded some of the paint off. I used a pen nib for the butterfly's head and added some painted Tim Holtz foliage. The words were printed out and then coloured with a little ink befor being cut out into steps and adding to the picture.



The dragonfly has been embossed in 3 different colours and what doesn't show in the photo is the beautiful iridescence of the wings as it shimmers between black and green. This whole plaque shimmers from the delicate silver corners and the Tim Holtz clear stars


Finally, the bee was coloured using alcohol inks. I love the use of crowns with bees as it always makes me think of France and so I added one of Tin Holtz' crowns to this. I added a little yellow paint to the crown to reflect the yellow of the bee.

I really like each of the 3 and can't make up my mind which I like best. It is just as well that I don't have to decide between them!

I am going to enter this trio of plaques into the following competitions:

A Vintage Journey - Heavy Metal
Fan-tastic Tuesday
Sparkles Monthly Challenge


Friday, 10 October 2014

It's Halloween time

I'm not really very big on Halloween, but my children (all grown up) and grandbabies are. So, for the first time ever, I am getting into the Halloween spirit. We have a party arranged and will do we trick and treating.

Here is something I made for part of the decorations.


I don't usually do "scenes", but this one came to me as I sat chatting to my daughters over a cup of tea and I had great fun putting it all together. I wanted to look like a dusty old shed where spells and potions had been mixed and I love the way it came out. It is a 6x6 square of MDF, which I covered with a piece of  paper with a wood panelling pattern. Then I stained the main shelf and small shelf using a Tim Holtz wood stencil. I die cut the raven, bottles and webs and fussy cut the hat and smaller bottles. There is a smattering of rub ons and everything is covered with a sprinkling of Vintage Photo distress embossing powder and Rangers verdigris embossing powder.

I am entering this into the following challenges:

Cut it Up challenge blog

Simply Create Too

Punk you girl

Lunagirl moonbeams

Haunted Design house







Wednesday, 1 October 2014

It's Autumn time

I absolutely love Autumn. Yesterday on the train on the way way to work I looked out the window to see mist filled fields and a beautiful orange sunrise. Although the days are unseasonably warm, the early mornings feel like October.

Two of the things I love most are the glorious shades of red, orange, yellow and brown in the leaves and the shiny brown conkers from the horse chestnut trees. 

Last weekend I took two of my little grandchildren (aged 5 & 3) for a long walk and we collected leaves, acorns and feathers and took them home to,make pictures. I was totally inspired by their artwork to make my own piece of work based on our finds and the things I see on my journey into school everyday.


I love Keat's Ode to Autumn, it has been one of my favourites since I studied it for my English Literature class in school, many, many years ago now! 


This is the front of the configuration box, done in various shades o distress paints and the leaves are red and brown archival inks.


The telephone wires are covered with birds on their way to migrating at the moment and I love the black archival ink here against the oranges, yellows and browns of the distress inks, which  reminds me of them. I used a lot of Aged Mahogany, which I don't use very often. My back garden is covered in dandelion seed heads and although I really should do some weeding, my grandchildren LOVE blowing the seeds and making wishes.


On my walk with my grandchildren we went to the local lake and the dragonflies were huge and I loved watching them dip in and out of the banks of the river but feeling sad that very soon they would be gone for another few months.

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The sycamore leave is a real one. Collected on my walk


I love the colours of this leaf. I used Tim Holtz speciality stamping paper, black archival ink and watered down distress stains. I stamped the leaf and then cut it out before inking it.


These little leaves were hand cut from adhesive backed gold foil (Silhouette brand), I then used various alcohol inks to add the autumn colours. The photos do not do these little leaves justice, because they really do look very pretty in real life.

I am entering this configuration box into the following challenges:

Crafty Creations Challenges in the "Use orange" challenge 
Ruby's Rainbow Autumn Leaves challenge
Vintage Journey "The Colours of Autumn" challenge