The Beauty of Becoming

Spring has sprung, and over on the Scrapbook.com forums, a spring secret partner tag swap was held. We were all given a secret partner and had to create a spring-themed tag, but we weren’t allowed to say who our partner was. They would find out when the tag arrived.

I decided to use the Tim Holtz Funky Florals dies to create a spring flower scene.

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I cut my tag base out of chipboard (5×7 in.) and glued down some background paper from my stash. (I believe both pieces used were Kaisercraft.)

I cut out a bunch of blooms and greenery from the Tim Holtz Funky Florals 2, Funky Florals 3, Funky Foliage, Wildflower Stems 1 and Garden Greens from various colors of Lawn Fawn card stock. I used Distress Inks to give the flowers and stems some shading.

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The watering can is a Tim Holtz Bigz die. The big piece was colored with Pumice Stone and Hickory Smoke Distress Ink, and the band was colored with Black Soot Distress Ink. I also sprayed the watering can with some silver sparkle spray so it glitters in the light.

I adhered the watering can to the tag base using foam tape, then tucked in the greenery and flowers behind using liquid glue to adhere them.

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I added a couple of flowers to the bottom of the can, along with a fussy cut butterfly from my stash. The sentiment is from the Prima Finnabair Art Daily Sentiments sticker book that I inked with some green Distress Ink.

When everything was glued down, I felt the tag needed a little something, so I added “shading” all around the tag by using three tiny greenery stamps from Lavinia Stamps in various shades of green VersaFine Clair inks. The final touch was the green ribbon at the top of the tag.

My partner loved it, which made me happy! Thanks for stopping by!

Guest Designer: Lavinia Stamps, part 2

As a guest designer for Lavinia Stamps this month, I was asked to create several projects using the April theme of “Buds and Blossoms.” For my mid-month project, I wanted to have a play in my regular Moleskin art journal. I started with the idea of a spring-fairy theme, but during the creation, it changed to an Easter-themed layout, and I actually kind of love it.

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When You Believe

To begin, I sprayed the bottom of the pages with Distress Oxide Peeled Paint spray. When that was dry I used Faded Jeans for the “sky.” (This was a boo-boo on my part. Meant to grab the Mermaid Lagoon, but grabbed the wrong blue. Turns out, I rather liked the darker blue.) After the sprays dried, I sprinkled the pages with water to activate the ink, then I used a brayer to apply some Distress Oxide ink in Tumbled Glass over the “sky.” Sprinkled with a bit more water and flicked on some white ink and let everything dry while I moved on to my stamping.

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I stamped the Lavinia Dragon Pods and Single Fairy Thistle onto some white card stock and colored the pods with various colors of Copic markers. I added some details with a white gel pen and some glitter pens (hard to see in the photos, but the sparkle is nice in person). I cut the round part of the pods out and set them aside.

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I stamped the two flower stamps in random spots on my background. Because I was working in an art journal that was a bit bulky, some of the stamping didn’t turn out so well. But I just colored in the parts I needed with a black pen and moved on. I glued the pods I had cut out onto the stamped pods, some with liquid glue, some with a pop-dot for a bit of dimension. I inked up the Lavinia Fairy Words stamp to add to the background, using second-generation stamping. Then I added a few details with glitter pens and Sharpies.

While coloring the pods, I realized they kind of reminded me of Easter eggs, so instead of using one of my fairy stamps, I grabbed one of the Whimsical Hares and stamped him on the right page. I also added a butterfly and two fallen “eggs” before inking the edges with Distress Oxide Vintage Photo. Finally, I added a Tim Holtz Small Talk sentiment and outlined it in black to finish.

I’d like to thank the staff at Lavinia for having me as a guest this month. It’s been super fun! The April challenge runs through April 25, 2019, so there’s still a few days to enter!

Guest Designer: Lavinia Stamps

Happy April! I’m super excited to say I was asked to be a guest designer for Lavinia Stamps this month. If you’re familiar with my art journaling, you know I just love their stamps, especially the fairies! I love creating fantastical scenes in my art journals, and the scenes I create could easily be adapted to a card front as well. I don’t send a lot of card myself, so I just keep my creations in my journal to look back on.

Each month, the Lavinia website hosts a Creative Challenge, and the winner receives a gift voucher to use in their online store. So cool! Check out their website for more information and how to enter.

The theme for April is “Buds and Blossoms.” I created two art journal scenes for my example pieces. For the first, I wanted to do something with a definite spring theme.

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One of my favorite ways of creating scenes in my art journal, especially when I’m using stamps, is to create a mask using dies I have in my stash. For this scene, I used the largest of the Tim Holtz Stacked Archway die set to create a mask out of Inkadinkado masking paper. I centered the mask on my journal page, and used stenciling brushes to blend my inks. I used Distress Oxides in Tumbled Glass, Broken China, Mermaid Lagoon and a bit of Wilted Violet for my “sky” and Peeled Paint and Mowed Lawn for my “ground.”

Leaving the mask on, I began stamping my foliage around the outside to frame the center. A list of all the Lavinia stamps will be provided below. For the stamping, I prefer to use Versafine Clair inks: Purple Delight, Acorn, Green Oasis, Verdant, Shady Lane and Blue Belle. For the fairy herself, I had planned to use Twilight, but couldn’t find it (argh!) so I used Versafine black ink, and it turned out OK. I added a bit of Sakura Stardust Gelly Roll pen to the fairy’s wings and some pink sparkle pen to the cherry blossoms as well. I also added a sentiment from my stash, as spring is such a delight when it finally arrives after a long winter.

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Lavinia Stamps:

Bria Rose: https://laviniastamps.com/product/bria-rose

Field Grass: https://laviniastamps.com/product/field-grass-2

Foliage: https://laviniastamps.com/product/foliage

Group Poppies: https://laviniastamps.com/product/group-poppies

Bluebells: https://laviniastamps.com/product/bluebells

Mini Leaf 2: https://laviniastamps.com/product/mini-leaf-2

Flourish: https://laviniastamps.com/product/flower-flourish

Cherry Blossom: https://laviniastamps.com/product/cherry-blossom

• • •

For my second piece, I really wanted to have a play with one of Lavinia’s newest releases, the Far World Castle stamp.

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I had also just received my first gel plate a day or two before the new stamps arrived, so I spent one Saturday playing with it, experimenting with making backgrounds. I love the backgrounds made with the gel plate on the Lavinia site, but since I don’t have Brushos, I just played around with Distress Oxides and Lindy’s Magicals. Some worked well, some didn’t. But that’s the point of experimenting.

For this background, I brayered Distress Oxide Mermaid Lagoon onto the gel plate, then flicked some Blue Hydrangea Magicals that had been watered down on top. I placed my paper onto the gel plate and pressed all over to get a good ink transfer. After I lifted the paper away and let it dry a bit, I brushed over the bottom half with some Cracked Pistachio Distress Oxide to give it a bit of a green tint.

For the ground, I tore a piece of paper and used it as a mask to make my hillside with Seedless Preserves Distress Ink. I also cut a circle mask out of masking paper for the “moon,” and did the same.

All my images were stamped using the Versafine Clair Monarch ink. And here’s a tip: If you don’t get a good impression with your stamping, I don’t try to restamp unless I’m using my MISTI. I take a small paint brush, pick up some of the ink off the ink pad, and paint in the areas that didn’t stamp well. The color blends nicely and you can’t even tell where it didn’t stamp well after it dries.

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For my final touch, I used the Sakura Stardust Gelly Roll pen to go around the edge of the moon for a bit of sparkly.

Lavinia stamps:

Far World Castle: https://laviniastamps.com/product/far-world-castle-lav534

Dragon Mini: https://laviniastamps.com/product/dragon-miniature

Fern Heads: https://laviniastamps.com/product/fern-heads

Mini Berry: https://laviniastamps.com/product/mini-berry

Skeleton Tree Scene: https://laviniastamps.com/product/skeleton-tree-scene-lav530

Butterflies: https://laviniastamps.com/product/butterflies

Cherry Blossom: https://laviniastamps.com/product/cherry-blossom

Mini Leaf 2: https://laviniastamps.com/product/mini-leaf-2

Thanks for stopping by, and I’ll have a couple more examples to go with this month’s theme later in the month!

Mixed media swap: Fairy Garden

Spring is slowly making its way into my area, though winter keep storming back into the room every few days, as if to say, “And another thing…” Though winter here has been mostly mild, with very little snow compared to years past, it has been the wettest winter on record for my county. Cold, rainy days play merry havoc on my asthmatic lungs, so I haven’t had a lot of energy for crafting lately.

That said, I did sign up for a mixed media swap over on the Scrapbook.com forums. My partner and I decided to surprise each other with our projects, using the theme of “Spring,” as we were both sick of winter. I decided to create a fairy garden on a folding fan for my project.

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I started with a wooden hand fan, which I glued open using Mod Podge. After adding a coat of white gesso, I painted the fan using Prima Finnabair Opal Magic Teal-Blue and Yellow-Pink, muted with a bit of White Pearl Metallique paint.

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I painted some vine flourish chipboard with Golden Moss Metallique paint and glued them down onto the fan, along with some flowers from 49 and Market.

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I took a quick-cast resin mold piece from the new Fairy Garden Finnabair mould and painted it with Butterfly Spells Sparks paint, then rubbed some Vintage Gold wax over the top. The wings were made using the Prima Grungy Butterflies painted with Magic Pond Sparks paint.

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I used several elements from the 49 and Market Layered Embellishments “Dragonfly Revolution” and “Wings and Things” amongst the flowers. I finished with some white ink splatters, some Prima gems and a pink tassel at the bottom.

Thanks for stopping by, and remember, think spring!

Be True

Hello, again, lovies! I’m back with another mixed media piece. I seem to create things in waves. First mixed media, then art journal layouts, then card making, until I finally come back around to mixed media. But I don’t mind. It’s good to flex the creative muscles every now and again!

Prima Marketing is holding its annual design team call, and this year, I’d thought I’d try out for it. Though I honestly don’t think I have a shot, based on looking at all the other beautiful entries, it has helped get me out of a creative slump I was beginning to feel a few weeks ago. So for that, I’m grateful. 

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So this project absolutely did not go as planned. In my mind I wanted to do a very rusty project with spots of patina. But when I started applying the rust paste, it was too orange for the picture in my mind and I just wasn’t feeling inspired to keep going. So I ended up painting over it with white gesso and using the pretty, soft pastels of the new Finnabair Opal Magic paints. I then highlighted a few areas with Vintage Gold wax and added a little bit more white gesso to tone down a few areas. And that’s when I fell in love with it. 

  

I just love the juxtaposition of the mechanical clockwork gears and the soft pastels. I’m so glad I didn’t give up on this project! I just had to step away for a while to think about it. I think, a year ago, I would have abandoned it completely. But I give my thanks to the many artists I watch on YouTube who keep saying it’s okay to make mistakes. I think I’m slowly gaining a little bit of confidence finally. 

Thanks for stopping by! I’ll probably have one more little mixed media project before the deadline for the design team call passes. See you soon!

Art Journal: Irish Luck, April Showers & May Flowers

I really should learn not to make grand plans, especially for my vacation weeks. I was on vacation for the last week of May through my birthday on June 4. I had grandiose plans of crafting all week, catching up on some blog posts and maybe trying my first video. Then I learned my nephew was coming to stay with us for a few days. Cool. Maybe I’d have to do fewer projects than I planned, but I could still get in some crafting time.

Then I got sick.

I’m talking cotton in my ears/unable to breathe through my nose/head in a vice sick. On my very first day of vacation. Went to the urgent care clinic to get some steroids to help my breathing since I have bad asthma as well and basically stayed in bed for six days.

So much for crafting on my week off!

I did, however, manage to do a couple of small things, including my May layout for my Julie Nutting art journal. And since I never got around to doing blog posts for March and April, this is me trying to play catch-up.

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Irish Luck

March almost got away from me because of how busy work was that month, so my St. Patrick’s Day layout was a little rushed. I used an Irish-themed paper pad by Authentique to paper-piece the dress of the Julie Nutting Doll with Ruffle Dress.

I wanted to have a leprechaun in the scene, but since I didn’t have any leprechaun stamps, I cobbled one together using the gnome from Lawn Fawn’s Gnome Sweet Gnome stamp set and the top hat from the Hero Arts Happy New Year set. I also die cut a rainbow using the Lawn Fawn Rainbow die and colored it with distress inks, though looking back, I wish I had used Copics.

The flowers and pot of gold are by Memory Box and the grass is Lawn Fawn. I added my sentiment from the same paper pad as I made the dress and put everything together just in time for St. Patrick’s Day.

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April Showers

Of course, April’s layout had to be an “April Showers” theme. I have to say, I really like how this one turned out! Looking through my stamps to see what I could add to an “April Showers” theme, I came across the Hero Arts Raining Cats and Dogs stamp set. Perfect!

I had a super-cute raindrop piece of scrapbook paper for the background and added some clouds cut from grey cardstock using the Lawn Fawn Cloud Borders die. I inked the edges with some Hickory Smoke distress ink to make the clouds a little darker.

I used the Camille Julie Nutting doll for this layout and paper-pieced her dress using one of Echo Park’s Dots and Stripes paper pads. Her umbrella is a Spellbinders die called Umbrella Trio.

The hills and trees are Lawn Fawn dies. I stamped my cats and dogs and colored them with Copic markers before using the coordinating dies to cut them out. The sentiment is from the same stamp set. Though you can’t see it in the photo, as a final touch I added a glitter pen to some of the raindrops in the background.

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May Flowers

What should follow “April Shower” but “May Flowers”! I had actually stamped and colored all my pieces for this layout in April, hoping to get May’s layout done in a reasonable time, but of course, life happened and I didn’t manage to get it put together until the very end of the month.

The background for this layout is another piece of scrapbook paper, this time by Ella and Viv. It had a lovely, pastel spring vibe perfect for my flowers. The Julie Nutting doll is Collette. Her dress is paper-pieced in a mish-mash of pink scraps from my stash.

The flowers are a fun stamp set from Simon Says Stamp called Artsy Flower Parts. They do have coordinating dies, but I ended up fussy cutting mine since I didn’t want the white border around the die cuts. I stamped them onto a piece of paper, then covered them with gel medium. When they were dry I used my Faber Castell Big Brush Markers to color them. By coloring over the gel medium, the ink doesn’t dry right away and you can push and smudge it with your fingers.

The lake is from the Lawn Fawn Bayou Backdrop die set, which I cut from blue cardstock and inked with distress inks. I stamped some of the flowers from the Simon Says Stamp set directly onto the page and glued the ones I had cut, hand-drawing the stems.

The sentiment is stamped using the Tim Holtz Block Lower Case cling foam stamps for the word “Bloom” and the Concord and 9th Perfectly Penned stamp set for the rest of the quote. As a final touch, I added some butterflies I had left over from making my Mother’s Day card from the Lawn Fawn Fab Flowers stamp set.

I’ve already got June and July’s art journal layouts planned out in my head… I’ll just have to wait and see if I can get them done before the end of the month this time!

NSD 2018 + Craft Fair Projects

National Scrapbook Day 2018 has come and gone, so I thought I’d share my makes for this year. I had planned on knocking out my mom’s Mother’s Day card early and work on other projects later in the day. Well… that did not happen. The card took all damn day. But it turned out pretty and I know she’ll love it, so it was worth it.

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Mother’s Day 2018

I did this card based on a Lawn Fawn YouTube tutorial. I used Lawn Fawn’s Fab Flowers the How You Bean? stamps and die sets to make this shaker card. I love getting Mom flowers, but they always die after a while, so this way, her card of flowers will last much longer. She still has last year’s Mother’s Day card on display, so I think she will like this one. And I ended up die cutting so many flowers, I had enough for two cards. The other I plan on adding to my craft fair stock.

Speaking of craft fairs, my goal this year is to attend one for the first time. So I am trying to build up some “stock” to sell at the annual craft fair held in my town before Christmas. I think I will mostly be making cards, but I have a few art pieces I’d like to add in as well. I’ve made four works using Oxide inks and Lavinia Stamps and I thought they turned out rather well. The artworks are 5×7, placed in a decorated 8×10 mat. I don’t know if anyone will be interested in them, but I’m pretty pleased with them.

Speaking of cards, here are some samples of ones I will be making for the craft fair.

Of course, if any of my dear readers are interested in anything ahead of time, just drop me a line at naiensama@gmail.com.

I’ll be back in a few days with updates on my Julie Nutting monthly layouts!