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 ๐Ÿ™‚

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’,ย  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 ๐Ÿ™‚

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.ย 

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 ๐Ÿ™‚

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 everyoneย  ๐Ÿ™‚

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