Merry Christmas!

The Christmas season is upon us! I’ve been busy making cards and gifts for the loved ones in my life, but I had a few moments during my last week off work to make an altered Christmas embroidery hoop to commemorate this year’s holiday season.

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I started off with an 6-inch hoop that I painted white with Finnabair’s Snow White Impasto Paint. I gave it several coats until I was happy with the color.

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After the paint had dried, I took a sanding block and went over the paint in a few places, to give it a more distressed look.

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To make my Christmas trees, I used an old Sizzix die called Trees, Three, but free-cutting triangles would work just as well. I also used up some old scraps of Christmas paper from Photoplay. Any paper with a small pattern would work.

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I cut several trees and bases, and inked the edges with Distress inks in Candied Apple and Peeled Paint for the trees and Vintage Photo for the bases. I then glued the bases to the trees.

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While waiting for the glue on my trees to dry, I mounted a piece of lace-covered burlap into my embroidery hoop. I trimmed the excess fabric away on the back, and glued what remained to the back of the hoop using hot glue.

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When my embroidery hoop was ready, I arranged my trees and glued them onto the burlap. I took a length of gold twine and wrapped it around the bottom, tying a knot at the base of the trees. For added security I also applied a little bit of glue to the back to hold the twine in place.

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For decoration, I added a few small buttons in red and green…

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…and a chipboard “Merry Christmas” heat embossed with an opaque white embossing powder.

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The final touch was to add a bow to the top and a piece of ribbon to hang my hoop from.

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I had so much fun making this embroidery hoop, I made a second as well.

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I didn’t do step-by-step photos for this one, but it’s a 4-inch hoop decorated with a poinsettia using the Tim Holtz Layered Tattered Poinsettia Die. I used gold seed beads for the center of the flower, and a chipboard “Joy” heat embossed with a sparkly gold embossing powder.

Thanks for stopping by! Hope your holidays are merry and bright!

Art journal: November and December

Hope everyone had a great Christmas/holiday season! This will probably be my last post for 2018, but I wanted to get my final two Julie Nutting art journal layouts posted before ringing in the new year. I’m honestly surprised that I managed to complete this art journal that started all the way back in January. I don’t always finish long-term projects. One of my many faults. But I managed to finish this one and it will be my first completed art journal. Well… the inside is complete. I hope to decorate the cover sometime in the new year.

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For my November layout, I wanted to do an autumn theme. I used a piece of scrapbook paper for my background to set the scene. I paper pieced the Julie Nutting Doll with Pocket Dress using Prima’s Amber Moon papers. I decorated my little scene using stickers from Paper House Productions (Autumn Woods) and Carta Bella (Fall Break). My sentiment wreath is from the Amber Moon ephemera pack.

To finish off the scene, I used some small leaf stamps by Lavinia Stamps around the edges in autumn colors. I don’t care much for reds and oranges, but I love the way this turned out!

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For my December layout, I again used a pretty piece of scrapbook paper for the background, this time from Ella & Viv. I used my new Merry Julie Nutting doll, paper pieced with papers from the Christmas Jewel collection from Kaisercraft. I die cut the Westbridge Christmas Tree die and the Village Lamp Post die from Poppystamps to add to my scene. I inked the lamp post with Black Soot Distress Ink and used Daytona Sands embossing powder from WOW! for the lamp light. I also heat embossed the tree using WOW! Metalline Greengage embossing powder. The sentiment is from the Merry stamp set, heat embossed with WOW! Blue Glitz powder.

I added some leftover animal stickers from the Paper House Productions Autumn Woods collections. I also added a poinsettia sticker to the lamp post and some purple gems to both the tree and the doll. My final touch was to add some sparkly snowflake stickers from Doodlebug.

I’m not planning on doing a monthly art journal next year… trying to keep up with this one was tough at times! But I’m not giving up art journaling altogether. I’m just going to do it when the mood strikes me next year.

And speaking of year-end wrap-ups, I’d just like to share my Top Nine favorite projects of 2018. I think I’ve improved a little over my creations in 2017, so I can’t wait to see what 2019 brings!

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Happy New Year!