Unique Possibilities

Hey all,

I have just had a lovely four-day crafty weekend of painting and scrapping. It started off with my best friend arriving to spend the day watercolour painting with me and ended with me sorting old family photos with my darling mum.

The watercolour painting is a new obsession after I went to a workshop at Summer School. The workshop was for botanical watercolour painting and I must say I was a little worried at my ability to paint flora to a scientific standard. Turns out that it wasn’t that strict and I did alright. So, my friend and I have become very keen to keep up with the watercolour painting and now spend every free Friday we have painting! Nothing better than painting with good company, a gourmet lunch and wine 🙂

Here’s what I painted on Friday, fruit and foliage from our fig tree.

Onto the scrapbooking…

This weekend I worked on using my subscription kit from Uniquely Creative. For those of you who haven’t heard of them, Uniquely Creative is an Australian company who sell both cardmaking and scrapbooking products, they offer a few different subscription kits each month. This months scrapbook kit features their new collection called ‘Urban Garden’. It is a gorgeous collection filled with floral and geometric designs in purples and greens. Each kit comes with a detailed booklet of scrapbook layout and card designs for you to create. I decided to try a few layouts from the booklet and get creative making my own layouts using the kit supplies.

I tried Kylie Kingham’s ‘Inspirational Layout’,  not going to lie but this was a lot of work! This particular layout in the booklet doesn’t have instructions, it justs states which kit supplies you need. I was able to work out how it was constructed just by studying the photograph, well, I guessed how she had created it. A few people have asked me how I made the heart like in Kylie’s original layout. So, here is my version and what I used…

The background of the layout is made from three layers (see pic above), I used a darker purple patterned paper from my stash for the second layer, instead of the lighter paper Kylie used.

I think perhaps Kylie used an electronic die cutting machine to cut out the heart shape from the background but as you know, I don’t own one. So, I did it the old school style and cut it by hand. Here’s how…

I freestyle drew a heart on a scrap piece of card, the easiest way to do this is to cut the card to the size you need and then fold the card in half. Draw half a heart on the folded card, then measure an inch in around the inside of your heart and draw a second inner half heart. Keeping the card folded in half, cut around both of your heart line drawings, when you unfold the card you will have a heart template (see photo with pencil).

Flip the paper/cardstock layout background that you will cut the heart from over to the reverse side, use washi tape to hold the template in place and carefully trace around the inner of the template. Remove the washi tape and using scissors carefully punch a hole into the centre of the drawn heart, then cut around the drawn heart line neatly. Hurray, you now have a heart hole in your paper! You then need to secure the striped paper behind the heart cutout.

Next, use a ruler and pencil to measure and mark the stitch holes around the heart. Then pierce each hole ready for hand stitching.

Use embroidery thread and a needle to stitch around the heart. The rest of the process is fussy cutting out flowers and embellishments, and building them up into layers around your photo. I also added a touch of purple glitter(from the kit) to some of the circle designs on the background paper, if you try this do it before you add your embellishments and make sure you let it dry. I then added a title cut out to my layout which was from a previous UC kit.

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I love Kylie’s design and was pleased with how mine turned out. I may even have another go making a second layout with the heart feature, though the stitching nearly did me in! I’ll share the other layouts I made in another post soon.

Keep on scrapping 🙂

Ahoy! Old Techniques!

Ahoy, me hearties! I am finally sharing the process photos for these very nautical layouts. Both layouts include papers from the ‘Hey Sailor’ DCWV paper pad. The papers in this pad are all glossy and some have gold foil, the patterns/designs are mostly cream, navy and black. There is everything nautical included, ships, anchors, whales, etc., and I bought it thinking that it would be great for scrapping our many holiday trips to the Albany, Whale Station.

These layouts are the first I have made with the papers and they are nothing to do with a whaling station! The first layout is of my son-in-law who works at the Black Anchor Tattoo Studio, see the connection? Anchors! This paper had the perfect design, mood and feel for scrapping this photo of him, taken at work for marketing purposes. I selected five papers for this layout, a cut apart sheet, some black with gold anchors, a cream with navy anchors, a stripe which is lengths of rope and a framed design to use for the background.

The photo I had available was quite distant and I wanted to have a close up of his face included in the layout, so I cropped and enlarged the photo. This turned out a little grainy and not to the quality I wanted, so I used an old technique to enhance the photo, putting a layer of vellum over the photo. The vellum reduces the graininess of the image. I stitched it roughly together using my sewing machine, I wasn’t precious about it, wanting it rough and ready to work with the look I was going for.

Next, I stepped back in time with another old technique…sanding! The glossy surface didn’t appeal to me for my background and I grunged it up with a sandpaper pad. I got some lovely texture with the sanding, as I worked on my cutting board and all the cuts and nicks on the board were picked up in the sanding process.

Next, I built up layers mounting my photos on the patterned papers and using some of the cut apart embellishments. Then I added several wooden embellishments leaving some plain and inking others black. The last touch was adding some Tim Holtz chipboard quotes. 

I love how this one turned out, the papers and sanding really captured the mood I was going for. By the way, as a proud mother-in-law, I just want to say that the photographer did a great job taking Dane’s portrait but he did make him look quite stern and serious. Dane is the sweetest, nicest young man, and a very talented artist who works very hard, and is always ready with a smile and a joke. I’ve rarely seen him looking this stern.

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For the second nautical layout, I used an AB Studio paper for the background called ‘Rustical Journey‘, some scraps from an AB Studio paper called ‘Diary, sheet 7‘, and a few DCWV leftover scraps from the layout above. The chosen background paper worked beautifully with the photos of my daughter and son in law dressed up for a Halloween work event.

The first step was using some old nautical stamps to make some tag embellishments. The wooden stamps have been sitting unused for many years!

I used Ranger Archival Ink in Jet Black to stamp the images and then used some Tim Holtz Distress Oxide inks to add some colour. To add a little bling, I mounted one tag on gold foil cardstock.

Next, I worked on building up some texture on my background paper using stencils and distress inks. The green stencils are from Kaisercraft and the white from a Uniquely Creative kit. *Note: Did you know that Uniquely Creative are now producing their own papers/collections? Oh my, they are awesome, with the same quality as the AB Studio collections. The papers are thick cardstock and each collection has cut apart sheets for those of us who love to fussy cut. Great to see an Australian company doing so well, check them out on their website. I will be posting soon about using one of the latest kits, their third collection, the gorgeous ‘Urban Garden’ collection. Not affiliated with the company, just a subscriber and big fan of their products.

The last stencil I used was a beautiful lace image, I lightly inked the image by swiping the ink across the stencil to create a soft grey, rather than the harsh black of the inkpad. I also lightly stamped in the pirate and his treasure chest, making sure it was slightly washed out to give an old-worldly effect.

The tag edges were inked and some recycled (from a gift) twine added.

I used some gold enamel dots which have a look of what you might see on the sides of a treasure chest, the bolts, just to add some bling. These are from the local cheap shop, about $2AU. Then I popped on some quotes, inking the edges and added some gold glitter chipboard Thickers for the title.

Another successful nautical layout with mood and feel. How beautiful is my daughter, so lovely?

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I hope you are all getting some scrappy time, I’m off to scrap with my Uniquely Creative monthly subscription kit. Have a scrappy weekend 🙂

2020…First Layouts of the New Decade!

Happy New Year to all, hope that you all had a lovely time celebrating with family and friends. My New Year celebrations were spent with my girlfriends who help me get through every year with love, laughter and support. None of them are scrapbookers and they don’t really get it, but they are artists and we try to spend arty times together throughout the year. 2019, was a little lacking on our normal arty events with us all dealing with busy lives. I hope to make more effort this year in keeping our creative catch-ups happening with a few arty outings throughout the year.

Anyhow, to kick off my 2020 scrapping, I chose to do a scraplift. The problem I have is 2020-01-02 09.13.09that I don’t know who created the original layout, I tried Google image search and had no luck…they linked it to artificial flowers! I wonder why? Haha. So, if you know whose layout this is please let me know, I would like to credit them? What I loved about this layout was the negative space and the layering on both sides of the layout.

My attempt started with building up some background using gesso and a stencil. The main reason I did this was that I didn’t really have a whole heap of embellishments to use with my photos, plus it gave me time to get messy and really play. I wanted to use some new supplies from Santa, the papers, plus use up some neglected products, the ribbon and frames.

I blended out the gesso edges, rubbing it with my fingers. Then, I sponged on some oxide distress ink, as the white gesso was a bit too stark.

Next, I mounted and built up the layers behind the photos and used the same papers to begin the corner embellishment cluster.

I then, layered up my embellishments with some found old Sizzix cut die cuts, wood veneers and die-cut alphas for the title. The last touch was adding some Nuvo Crystal Drops to create enamel dots. I’m slowly getting better at applying the Nuvo drops, though some are trickier than others due to how thick the mix is.

The finished layout is pleasing but I do need to add some journaling about why we have to do this for every new tree planted, one word…kangaroos! They devastate pretty much anything new, if they can reach it they will eat it and the tree guards can not be removed until the tree is well established.2020-01-02 08.51.33-1

The second layout for 2020 is about my husband’s shoes, not a topic that most people would scrap. The reason I wanted to capture this memory is that he is finishing up his baking career, he did his last shift two days ago. No more flour-dusted shoes and night shift, it will be a change for us all having him home in the evenings and not having him arrive home while I am drinking my morning cup of tea.

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The papers I used were from Santa, a mix pulled from several paper pads, including this gorgeous alpha sheet from Maggie Holmes’s Bloom collection. I fussy cut this sheet to use as embellishments and selected four of the alpha cards for this layout.

I smeared some white gesso onto two opposite corners on my background to try and get a floury texture and sprinkled on some white ink for spots of flour. In the end, most of this got covered by embellishments and is hard to see in the finished layout photo.

Then, I went to town mounting and layering papers, adding the photos, embellishments and titles. I quite like how it turned out and think it just needs a thin journal strip at the base outlining the story.

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The last two layouts I completed are of my grandson, I tried to add some bling to both and use up some sequins. The top layout is made with a Vicki Boutin, mixed media, printed cardstock. Yep, Santa thought that I needed some time off from creating my own mixed media backgrounds and bought me the paper pad. I couldn’t resist adding a touch of colour and stencilled around the edges using a Uniquely Creative stencil and some TH distress inks. Both layouts have some Maggie Holmes and Shimelle papers/embellishments, and the bottom layout has some more Nuvo drops (don’t look too closely, some of the dots are not round…haha).

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I hope you all are getting some time to scrap and have a fabulous crafty year. For some of our Australian friends and crafters, life is tough at the moment with the extreme fires burning across our country. Many have lost homes and loved ones, if you can support them in some way, please do? It may be just in prayers, offering accommodation, food and supplies, or donating cash to one of the many collection funds which have been set up across Australia and the World. Every little bit will help in this intense time of need. Thank you to all our emergency services and volunteers across the country who are working at full capacity, and to the USA firefighters who are coming to help us out. Let us all hope that rain will arrive soon and help quench the flames, it is really the only thing that will stop this firestorm.

 

Happy scrapping everyone  🙂

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RTS…Heritage Inspiration

Good morning,

Back in November, Janet from RTS Scrapbooking released her 4for4 Series – Heritage Round. It is a great series with many tips and tricks for creating heritage layouts. Now, I’m not a fan of making heritage layouts and I think generally this is because most people use very dull coloured papers with old fashioned flowery/object prints. I’m more a bright colour girl and so, I thought I would challenge myself and have a go. Around the same time, in the Love RTS FB group, there was a post suggesting you sort and collect up papers which challenged you, the ugly, the old, dated and ‘the untouchables’ and make them into kits. Now, I have a stack of papers that don’t appeal to my tastes, so these were the papers I decided to use for my heritage layouts. Some Love RTS members loved the papers which I detested, we all have different tastes and for me, purple is yucky, as are flower prints which remind me of my Nanna’s wallpaper!

Here are my ‘untouchables’, papers I don’t like…

I started off with the pink and green patterned and floral papers, using a photo of my grandfather. Now, flowers and men usually don’t mix but the story behind the photo is quite romantic and I thought I would get away using these girly papers. This is the photo that my grandfather had taken to send to his sweetheart, my Nanna, during the war. On the bottom right corner, you can see the sweet message he scribed to her.

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Janet’s layout features a diagonal patterned paper format and I followed the same process. You can watch Janet’s video here.  As my grandfather was in his motorcycle uniform I found some images related to his job in the war and printed them out to use as embellishments. A tip when using home-printed embellishments, they can sometimes look a little flat in colour, but you can achieve a more polished finish 81Bd+w4oVAL._SY550_by rubbing each image with a little Tim Holtz Distress Micro Glaze. It just makes the colour pop a little more and looks like a bought die cut. I also printed a heritage document from the website recommended on RTS, https://olddesignshop.com/.

The finished layout turned out quite dashing with just a touch of floral.

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My next layout is of my Nanna, the photo she had taken to send to my grandfather. I used one of the purple ‘untouchable’ papers for the background. For this layout, I wanted to use some embossing folders which I had recently purchased secondhand on FB Marketplace, they had come with a whole heap of steel dies I got cheap. I have hardly used embossing folders in my craft life, they fall into my old fashioned, untouchable category. So, this was the perfect time to try them out. I made embossed papers to use for mounts and layering behind the photo.

It is a simple process of inking one side of the plate before adding your paper/cardstock and running it through my Sizzix Bigshot.

The results are quite stunning and really did remind me of the old embossed wallpaper and brocade furniture in my Nanna’s house.

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The next photo, I believe to be of them both on their wedding day. It was wartime, so times were tough and for them, there was no white wedding. For this layout, I used the rest of the green and pink untouchable papers. Amongst these papers was a rose floral which was just calling to be fussy cut, fussy cut I did! I also used more printable embellishments from the Old Design website, and it gave me an opportunity to use up some ribbon bows.

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It was a fun experience creating heritage layouts and I didn’t mind the end results, however, I did lose interest and moved on to other challenges. One day, I will have another go and finish scrapping the small pile of heritage family photos that I have.

What I did have a go at was getting rid of some more of the purple ‘untouchable’ papers and scrapping some old family photos from the ’90s. I’m not sure I pulled it off, the papers were pretty ugly and gaudy, but I gave it my best shot. Anyway, more layouts in albums…the ultimate goal.

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Keep on scrapping! 🙂

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RTS 6×6 SG Challenge Layouts

Hey all,

I am playing catch up and only just sharing these layouts from several weeks ago!  I had a lot of fun joining in with Janet Maden’s challenge from RTS which focuses on using 6×6 paper pads with scrapbook sketches from Allison Davis at Scrapbook Generations.

It has felt like a step back in time, using double page sketches, as I tend to focus on single layouts with a matching pocket page these days unless it is for a challenge. When I do use a double layout format it seems to be all or nothing, I make a stack of them in one week, then none for months and months. I do have have a few on my blog from last year which I will share links too at the end of the page.

So, here we go, my seven layouts from the RTS 6×6 Challenge

I mostly followed the Allison Davis sketches whilst watching Janet’s RTS 6 x 6 series, Janet always has a different slant on how to use your cut pieces in multiple ways. My first layout is of my grandson after he took to himself with a permanent marker! I’m pretty sure he will end up with real tattoos when he is old enough, he is influenced by his parents who both have tattoos and he has an uncle who is an apprentice tattooist.

Layout #1. Cool Tatts, homemade! Lots of ink splashed around here and some stamping, every layout has mixed media in this bunch. I used some old TLC rubons and a mix of quote embellishments.

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Layout #2. Big Blow Up! A blower vac war between my hubby and grandson. Ink and stencils this time, some of the new Vicki Boutin honey stencils and a Kaisercraft floral stencil.

 

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Layout #3. First Train Ride. Some more splashed around Oxide ink and lots of stamping to make the craft stock background. The patterned papers and die cut embellishments are from Kaisercraft.

 

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Layout #4. Round We Go, photos from a day at the Perth Zoo when we tried out the merry go round/carousal. Circle stamps to get that ‘mood and feel’, as Janet would say.

 

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Layout #5. more Zoo photos! Our zoo trip was not planned and we weren’t prepared for a day in the sun, so we bought very daggy zoo hats. Looking very fetching we just had to have a selfie taken.

At the Perth Zoo, there are many large, ancient, pine trees and I thought this cute decorative fake foliage, which I picked up for $2 from Spotlight, would make great pine trees on my layout.

 

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Layout #6. Lets Go Mumma, fun in a jeep at the zoo.

More splashing of ink and some stamping using a Uniquely creative metal die as a stamp.

 

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Layout #7. Amazing Hot Dogs. I think this one is my favourite, no mixed media. I like how the photos are laid out in a sequence of the event, cooking hot dogs on a campfire at home.

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And…that is where I stopped. I didn’t make the last layout, number 8, perhaps I’ll get to finish it during the summer holidays. Only three more sleeps and school’s out for me!

Here are some links to previous double layouts which I have shared…

Jan CKC 4 

CKC 2-3

CKC Always Enchant

Please leave a comment below or share with other creatives, remember you need to open the post by clicking on the title to access the comment box if you are on the home page.

Happy scrapping everyone  🙂

 

Flowers and AB Studio!

Good morning,

This weekend I am having fun playing with some AB Studio papers, I love all of their collections and recently purchased papers and sets from a few new ones. Two which I purchased are the ‘Breeze of the Forest’ and ‘Secret Wood’ set, both are very Winter snow and Christmas themed with beautiful illustrations of forest animals and snowy landscapes. Hmmm, those who know me may be asking why I would purchase these, given that I live where it never snows? Well, they are beautiful and many of the snowscapes have pine trees, which do surround our town. I hoped to be able to use them creatively for events and themes other than snowy weather and Christmas.

I also purchased some of the ‘Diary’ collection papers and the shabby  ‘Love Symphony’ papers, also beautiful papers with floral and heritage costume elements. So, a few weeks ago when I was up and about at 5am, I went around our garden taking photos of all the spring flowers blooming, these became my inspiration for creating with some of the AB Studio papers.

Layout #1,

I selected the ‘Memories’ paper from the Diary collection and the ‘First Rose’ cut apart element sheet. Plus, a few other bits and bobs from other companies to embellish the page, including some very old TLC chipboards buckles.

Then I decided to pull out an old Tim Holtz product, some grunge board, a giant @ symbol and used some oxide inks, water and colour sprays to add the right colour to match the background paper. I also added colour spray to the background, trying to not to form halo effects.

Then, it was simply a matter of adhering my photos, fussy cut roses and embellishments onto the dried background. Because my photos were of a climbing rose, I tried to make the rose embellishments climb around the photos. I also used some of the tags from the Diary collection cut apart sheet ‘Red is Bad’, some Kaisercraft paper roses (which I squashed to reduce the thickness) and some silver Thickers for the title.

The finished layout ended up over-embellished, taking up lots of space much like the rambling rose in our garden.

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Layout #2

For this layout, I selected another Diary collection paper for the background, ‘Your Own’, and the ‘4 Different Ways’ paper to fussy cut for embellishments, I only used one-quarter of the page. I had some old Kaisercraft door and quote diecuts and some more of those TLC buckles (which I didn’t end up using).

My photos of orchids had yellow and pink tones in the flowers and so I added some pink distress ink to the background, before adhering the photos into place.

Then, I adhered the fussy cut flowers and diecuts into place, with some of them I inked and distressed the edges first.  I love how this layout turned out, the subtle sepia brown flower diecuts enhance the photos.

 

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Layout #3

For this layout, I used the reverse of the ‘4 Different Ways’ paper (I purchased a few of this sheet)  which has a lovely black and white floral design and some stitching/costume elements. I also decided to use the leftover piece of the cut apart ‘First Rose’ sheet and fussy cut out the flowers for embellishments. There was also some leftover tags and quotes from the ‘Red is Bad’cut apart sheet.

This time my photos had a lot of green foliage in them and I decided to add green and pink to the background sheet. I lightly spritzed two shades of pink in the main area where my photos would be placed. I used a Kaisercraft stencil and after sampling different green inks went with Tim Holtz Oxide inks, they blend so beautifully and are thick and creamy. I wanted to create a halo of foliage around where my photos would sit and have the greenery travel across the page.

After mounting and adhering my photos into place, I added my fussy cut flowers, tucking the on and under the photos. When I ordered the AB Studio collections, etc., the lovely Bri from Anna’s Craftcupboard included a little freebie, 3 little silver glitter acrylic embellishments, so I added them to this layout. They are very cute and of good quality. Then I popped on some silver sparkle enamel dots and some little dots of Antique Silver Kindy Glitz. Here I am the anti glitter girl…adding sparkle!

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Layout #4

This time I used papers from the ‘Secret Wood’ and the ‘Breeze of the Forest’ Christmas/Snowy collections. Yep, snowy papers with rose hips, snow and winter foliage, with a few scraps from other companies, for a spring layout. The papers used are the bonus cut apart sheet, sheet #4, sheet #8 from the ‘Secret Wood’ and sheet #5 from the ‘Breeze of the Forest’.  I had six photos to include on this layout and decided to make a double page layout using a sketch map from a Scrapbook Generations travel ebook.

It was a pretty easy sketch to follow with good directions for selecting and cutting the papers. I grunged up the background by dragging some oxide ink across each page in a lovely soft yellow called Scattered Straw, before mounting and adhering my photos in place.

Then, I added some fussy cut flowers, some butterfly and quote die cuts, and some Nuvo Crystal Drops and rose gold Kindy Glitz. Plus, one of the TLC buckles with some organza ribbon. Overall, I am pretty happy with this layout, I doubt anyone would pick the papers as being Christmas themed.

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Happy scrapping everyone  🙂

CKC Oct. 2019 – Layout #3

Good morning,

A quick share of another layout using my CKC October kit. I used three papers from my kit, the navy and white polka dot, the yellow polka dot and the text dictionary print for the background.

I wanted to combine two challenges with this layout, my favourite online store, Annas Craft Cupboard,  and FB scrappy group had a mood board challenge for this month which I 72086680_10157321391587931_4661759538892898304_n (1).jpgloved. The colours were perfect for my photo. There was a slight hint of blue in the background of the photo and some lovely creams and golds from my daughters, hair, skin and jewellery. I used three different Tim Holtz oxide inks to grunge up the background using the plastic bag technique, a very simple technique using just ink and water to create amazing layers of colour. 

Then I rummaged through my embellishment supplies in my kit and on my desk. I pulled out some very old chipboard frames and a heart, some new Vicki Boutin die cuts, a scrap scallop edge from a chipboard sheet, and some Tim Holtz chipboard quotes and rose die cuts. Also on my desk was some copper glitter and a bag of sequins waiting to be put away, so I decided to use these as well.

I distressed the edges of my matting papers which included a few scrap pieces and the polka dot papers from my kit. I roughly laid out where I would place the embellishments, paper matting and photo, at this stage, I take a photo and use it as a reference later when adhering things in place.

I needed to make some changes to the chipboard frames/shapes as they stood out too much being plain white and cream. I dunked them onto a mix of oxide ink and water (to activate the oxidisation) and create a little implied texture and colour. I added some little specks of glue to each, using my finger, and sprinkled each with glitter, then shook off the excess. Let me just say that I am not a glitter girl and it is rare for me to use it if I do use glitter it is usually on Christmas items. For me, a lot of glitter is gaudy, but a little can add some magic to a layout.

After I added the embellishments, some of that glitter made its way onto the background, once again a little smear of glue with my finger and a very light sprinkle of glitter. Then, I added some sequins and some Nuvo crystal drops ( a recent purchase). I am still trying to master adding Nuvo drops, some had little peaks which I squashed down when they were half dry. The blue Nuvo drops worked every time, the metallic did not!

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I enjoyed putting this layout together, it is always fun to get messy playing with oxide inks. I think the layout came together well and I love how all the embellishments coordinated with the colours in the background.

Keep on scrapping everyone 🙂

*Note: if you are purchasing glitter, please only purchase the environmental type now available. We all now know how bad it is for the waterways and wildlife. When cleaning up your work surface, use a baby wipe, damp tissue/paper towel which will hold onto the glitter during the cleanup and try to dispose of it in a more eco-responsible way. As crafters, we all have a tonne of glitter in various forms, we need to try and do the right thing. Here are some links with advice on responsible use and disposal…

How to get rid of your plastic glitter

How to dispose of glitter

The eco-friendly guide to glitter

‘Go forth and sparkle responsibly’ 

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