Sunday, 16 March 2014

Goin' on a trip? Pack your bags!

Hello and thank-you for your visit. A warm welcome too to new followers.

As you might know my favourite style is vintage, usually done with some prettiness. The challenge at exciting new blog A Vintage Journey requests anything vintage with a strong hint of Maestro Tim Holtz (TH). As the mega talented DT sets forth on their journey I thought it appropriate to alter some suitcases for them. So for a change ... here's some grunge and a warning for a verrry long post...



I started off with some papier mache suitcases. Ages ago the lovely Alison sent me a package all beautifully wrapped up in TH's tissue wrap. I've collaged this tissue wrap all over each case. There then followed a brown and black marathon using TH distress inks, stains, paints, stencils and stamps. I particularly had fun using the splatter brush (by Liquitex) that TH has used in recent videos. It wasn't so much fun though cleaning up afterwards! When I decided that enough layers of ink etc. were on I added a crackle layer to make sure that cases looked even more battered.


I love the Idea-ology pieces that TH has designed. On the outside of the cases I've used TH box corners, hitch fasteners and ring fasteners. The larger suitcase has a TH ornate plate on the front. I recently won an amazing Maja Design giveaway from the lovely Jenny and I've cut out some words from one sheet to go inside the plate that is then topped up with glossy accents.


I know it's an anachronism but given that TH designed pulley wheels I thought it would be fun to have wheels on the cases. I didn't have ones by TH so I've devised my own. They are made from miniature wooden spools. Painted the inner areas black/brown and the 'wheels' copper. I rummaged through some of my late Dad's old toolkits and found screws, nuts and other metal bits that I don't know the name of but once I had 'rusted them up' with Adirondack alcohol ink and distress EP they looked perfect for the cases.



TH box corners come in a worn sort of pewter colour. I needed to change them to an aged copper so I inked them with versamark and added variously copper and black EPs. To achieve the greeny patina I dabbed Pearl-ex blue/green powder into the melting EP mixture. (This 'aging' has been applied to all the metal elements).


Some welcome relief from the dark hues comes inside each case. I've lined the insides with some of the gorgeous Maja Design papers and borders that come at the end of each 12 x 12 sheet. As I'd already used lots of TH stamps on the outside I decided to use one of his texture fades to emboss the inside lid and finally made use of the TH circular embossing diffuser to 'frame' my globe and compass. Then brayered over some DI for emphasis. A TH game spinner, ticket and a hitch fastener are also used. I spent a lot of time making that water bottle grimey! I've labelled it to remind owner of the current airline restriction levels for liquids in carry-ons!


Now you all know TH is famous for his tags and brilliantly educational monthly tag challenges. So I just had to include a tag! The thing is, I've never done a TH 'monthly tag'. I thought I should remedy this and so have included my take on TH's March tag inside the larger case. I hope this format (and resized tag) is ok to enter to his challenge. I don't yet have the really fab nest stamp set or the spritzer tool so I've improvised. Thank-you to generous Geraldine for her beautiful gifts last week including the TH bird branch stamp and some other items included in project.

The egg is from a M&S candy & chocolate eggs packet. I set aside a green egg and as I crafted I ate the rest of the packet. Next thing was I had a brainwave that I should add more speckle to the egg so I proceeded to splat brown paint at it. It looked great! I needed to dry one side so that I could splatter the rest of the egg, so I began to dry the egg with my heat gun. All of a nano-second the poor egg suffered a catastrophe ... the chocolate turned to liquid and the candy disintegrated into a pooled mess! The next day I had to dash to M&S for another packet of eggs ... no splats this time!! I thought that the TH light bulb would co-ordinate well with his rays stencil. Same stencil is also used on outside of top lid of case. I've made nest with dried moss and shredded paper. I cut a small circle in the tag and inset the little nest into it. (For info: the nest is mostly inked with one of Wendy Vecchi's new ink shades - 'Tree Branch').



The label plate on the smaller suitcase is by Artemio with insert a cutout from Maja Design. I tried out black brads in the metal elements but considered them too dark so have put in shiny copper ones instead. By the way, if you look at left hand corner of luggage tag below you can see the initials of the owner!


For the 'leather' straps I used SEI velvet paper that I fairly well battered, smudged and sprayed to get it worn looking. I also machine stitched along the centre of each strap for further texture.


I attached a luggage tag and charms to each case with TH swivel clasps. Collaged each tag with cutouts from G45 / Echo Park 'Photo Freedom' kit, then sanded and aged with DIs before coating with crackle.


For the inside of the smaller case I've used TH's new decorative strip 'Butterfly Frenzy'. The lid part is decorated with the little die cutouts along with some balloon cutouts from beautiful Maja Design papers. I painted and glittered (Clear Rock) some chipboard letters too. I've followed the very creative Candy who often uses 'Mercury Glass' stickles for edging. (Sorry for photo quality but I couldn't hold open and snap the small case sufficiently to get a decent photo).


I've used the remaining part of 'Butterfly Frenzy' on the lower portion of case. Also stamped TH stamp on paper using Wendy Vecchi new 'Hydrangea' colour in case you are interested in shades.


Finally, here is a rear view to show you those lovely TH hinges that I've given the aged copper treatment to.


Thank-you so much if you've read through all this lengthy post. I've spent ages on this piece through the week so apologies for not visiting as much. I hope to catch up tomorrow.

Have a lovely week,
Nicola x

I wish to enter cases to the following challenges:
A Vintage Journey - Anything Tim
Simon Monday Challenge - D is for Distress
Craft Hoarders Anonymous - Vintage or Retro
Tim Holtz - 12 Tags of 2014 - March
Vintage Udfordring - Sewing (Machine stitching is on 'leather' straps)
Inspiration Journal - A Splash of Colour
Rhedd and Rosie Challenge - Aged / Distressed
Rhedd's Creative Spirit - Altered Art March
Country View Challenges - Paper Chase
Art With Heart Challenge - New Beginnings (for AVJ)

62 comments:

  1. What a superb set of suitcases. They just shout TH at me. You have added so many wonderful details both inside and out. I want to touch them too. Clever crafter doing work like this. Hugs Rita xxx

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  2. Breathtakingly brilliant, Nicola! Wow!
    Hugs,
    Claudia x

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  3. Wow, how beautiful! Thanks for joining us at Craft Hoarders Anonymous!

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  4. OMG Nicola, this is totally amazing BIG TIME!!!! Wow, wow, wow, I absolutely adore these cases!!!! Both the outsides and the insides look so amazing!!! Thanks a million for joining us on our travels over at A Vintage Journey, we are so glad to have you along for the ride!!!

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  5. Oooooo Bravo. this is just stunning. I really love this project. LOVE it.

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  6. Wow - it's so fantastic!!!!

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  7. These are absolutely fabulous Nicola, I love everything about them!!!

    Kevin xx

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  8. These are amazing...they look like vintage leather! Thanks for joining us at Craft Hoarders Anonymous Challenge 3: Vintage/Retro!

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  9. Amazing! The hours you must have spent, all the details you added. I love the little nest, and can just picture your face when the candy egg melted and you had already eaten the rest of them! Funny, but probably not to you at the time. These cases are just magnificent!

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  10. Brilliant! Clever! Excellently executed. . .melting M&M and all!! Thanks for joining us and sharing your stash at Craft Hoarders Anonymous!

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  11. These are amazing! Wonderful vintage!

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  12. I'm pretty much speechless - and that's quite an achievement as you know! What an extraordinarily beautiful creation, Nicola - outstanding vintage look, glorious colours, textures and techniques... altogether jaw-droppingly beautiful. The metal corners and the rugged straps, and that enchanting take on Tim's tags tucked away inside - delights everywhere you look. I can see that this will have been keeping you very busy. But who is the lucky AR whose initials appear to be on the tag?! Is it a team-mate of mine?!

    Glorious, Nicola. Thank you so much for joining us on A Vintage Journey and providing such amazing luggage for us en route.
    Alison xx

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    1. Thank-you Alison! Have only now spotted the AR - that was a 'FAR' and I've overwrapped the F. It was a deliberate TH I put in the opposite corner! Just goes to show how our eyes see different things. Nicola x

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  13. When I saw this, I wanted to swoon a bit! Wow! Wonderful creation. I love all the details and the color and texture! Just a super project! Thanks for joining us at Craft Hoarders Anonymous!

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  14. Wow Nicola! What an incredibly beautiful project! I can't get over all the distressing and your attention to detail! Thanks so much for joining along with the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge!

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  15. Wow, these are nice vintage suitcases. Thanks for joining us at Craft Hoarders Anonymous.

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  16. OMG THIS IS A STUNNER! Love your suitcase to bits. Your newest follower. Karen.x

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  17. A truly amazing piece of artwork Alison, it must have taken you absolutely hours but is a real feat for the eyes.

    B x

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  18. Wow! Absolutely stunning. Love all that you've done with this project Nicola, what a creative process! Chris xxx

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  19. Oh Nicola, I don't think I have seen a more beautiful transformation of anything,, anywhere, ever!! This is incredibly beautiful, a real masterpiece, absolutely stunning - I cannot think of enough words to describe what I feel! I did have a giggle about the chocolate though...... but I can see you have truly mastered the splatter brush now (I will come over for some tuition!). I love the way you have added your own make of wheels, they are are amazing. Love your take on Tim's tag too. The whole thing is just amazing. Alison certainly has keen eyes, I had to go back to see the AR bit - lol.

    Thank you so much for joining in our 'Anything Tim' challenge at A Vintage Journey, it is lovely to see you playing along. Hugs, Anne xx

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  20. This is fantastic Nicola - such an amazing amount of detail to enjoy and your description of the process added to the fun. I did have a chuckle over the M&S eggs - hmmm, what happened to the rest of the second packet?? Margie x

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  21. Wow…this is jaw dropping amazing.
    So many details.
    Thanks for sharing with us at Craft Hoarders Anon :)

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  22. AWE Nicola, this is a fabulous masterpiece in this Vintage style you love so much.... I remember the two stunning and incredibly beautiful suitcases you created a long time ago, this is another one absolutely PERFECT! Great work, I send you a lot of hugs from my country. Coco xxx

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  23. Oh my this is so amazing, the work you put into your projects is outstanding. So much involved in these little suitcases, I just love them - and the egg!! Lol.

    Thanks for joining us at Rhedd & Rosie challenge blog.

    Moira DT. xx

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  24. Hi Nicola, WOW! this is stunning - such a fabulous finish on these suitcases, and so many details - inside and out. So pleased to read you enjoyed yourself eating chocolate eggs while making these!
    Avril xx

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  25. Wonderful work, Nicola! A visit to you is always such a treat and this one is so stunningly worth it! Fab, fab, fab! I love the inside and the outside equally of these two! I love little suitcases in any form, but these are beyond brilliant! Julie Ann xxx

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  26. WOW...WOW...WOW...Nicola I am speechless...Fabulous work..the depth of colours & texture is AmAzing...Brilliant inside & out... Hugs May x x

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  27. I can only think of one thing to say Nicola! "Amazing" thank you for sharing this superb project with us at Rhedd and Rosie's, good luck Hun, Zoe DT xx

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  28. wOOw! Totally wowzerous, Nicola! Your execution is just genius and the rusty look is amazing! And the egg hunt - love it! xxx

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  29. This is amazing!!! I too love vintage and this is a beautiful project! Thanks for joining us at Craft Hoarders Anon!!

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  30. Hi Nicola, I too like many before me am amazed at these suitcases. They are just fabulous, Thank you so much for sharing. Hugs Mo xx

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  31. When I see something as special and beautiful as this I can't seem to find the right words to express how I feel. Just take my word for it, I'm feeling lots of things looking at this. Impressed beyond words!

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  32. Wow what a stunning piece, you have aged this beautifully and the rustic colours are superb. I love how you decorated inside too. Wonderful attention to detail . Thanks so much for joining in the Eileen Hull New Beginning challenge. Tracy x

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  33. Nicola....OH MY GOSH!!! Your suitcases are beyond amazing! Nicola...these are a bizillion times beyond amazing! Your knack for creating vintage pieces is unbelievable! The exteriors with their worn straps, the beautifully aged hinges and the exteriors on the suitcases themselves really are eye catchers! So vintage and so worn looking. Lots of technique to get them to look like that. And then the interiors....love the bird and butterflies themes! Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful art with us at A Vintage Journey. <3 Candy

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  34. Oh my gosh Nicola, what a truly stunning work of art. I am bookmaking it to come back to again and again. I love the whole way you have gone about this process and having cases for a Vintage Journey is just perfect. Thanks so much for sharing them with us.
    Have a great week.
    hugs {brenda} x0x

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  35. PINNED!!! What fabulous grungy suitcases! Love the wheels and the insides too! Marvelous, just marvelous!

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  36. Such a stunning project Nicola. It is a museum piece, you can look at it over and over again; so interesting and full of wonders. I also enjoy your write up. SUPERB!
    Hugs, Katie

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  37. These are so stunning! You are truly a vintage master yourself and I love how these were so lovely on both the outside and the inside. Really incredible work which inspired me. I'm so glad you shared this with us for the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge blog!

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  38. wow and double wow . this piece is amazing! thanks so much for playing along at A Vintage Journey and hope to see you again soon x hugs xtrace x

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  39. Oh my goodness! You have done it again! Just incredible. I can't even begin to tell you how much I love this!
    Thank you for entering your project at Rhedd’s Creative Spirit. Sammy-x

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  40. Stunning work Nicola! These cases are amazing the detail and wonderful finish is just fantastic x

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  41. These are an absolute masterpiece and a definite winner. I bet Mr Holtz himself would love to own them.
    Julie x

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  42. oh my goodness nioola.i am speechless, this is amazing :D

    xx coops xx

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  43. These are stunning, love the beautiful rich colours and patinas you have achieved

    Love them

    Jools x

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  44. Oh my GOODNESS!!!! I am lost for words, this is just outstanding, fabulous. I love your work and it is always to breathtaking and a pleasure to drool over.

    Thanks for coming over and joining in with our 28th Challenge - Aged/Distressed at Rhedd and Rosie's Challenge Blog.

    Great Big Huge Hugs

    Becca xxx (DT member)

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  45. Wow! I am spellbound by this magical creation! Thanks for sharing your Art with Heart!

    Amy*

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  46. wow wow wow !!!!!!! one word for this .... a masterpiece xoxox

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  47. Well I am just about speechless with your amazing altered suitcase! So many luscious details and stamping. Love this! Thank you for sharing with us at A Vintage Journey. Enjoy!

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  48. Wow wowwow , Nicola!! It's gorgeous,..the outside is outstanding, but when I see you put the Tim's tag inspired inside...genius and wonderful! (I think you were inspired by the chocolate?! This is your secret??) ;-)

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  49. Wow,how amazing...I`m stunned.......

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  50. Oh my, Nicola, this is such a gorgeous piece of artwork. Love all the wonderful details of it. Fantastic! :)

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  51. Wow Nicola, what an amazing project ! Love the detail you've added and the wheels are fantastic ! Thanks for joining us at CVC. Sue C x

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  52. Stunning just stunning...I so love these suitcases...Thank you for joining in with our challenge over at Rhedds Creative Spirit...x

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  53. Are you kidding me Nicola!?!?!?! "Wow!!" just does not do this project justice. Insanely fabulous inside and out. What a great way to use the tissue wrap from Alison. Those wheels ... I don't have enough words to tell you how amazing they are. Tim should love looking for his tag in those suitcases. Can't tell you how much I loved unwrapping all the details as I meandered through your wonderful post. Heading off to pin this!!!!! -- Mary Elizabeth

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  54. Wow!! These are just fantastic!

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  55. These are very cool!! Thanks for sharing with us at Inspiration Journal. =)

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  56. Oh Nicola!! Congrats on your win at A Vintage Journey my friend. You were the hands down winner in my book ... such an incredible make. I'm so thrilled for you :) Hugs!! Mary Elizabeth

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  57. I have never seen your work before but follow A Vintage Journey & the rest as they say....
    Oh My Days? These suit cases are Incredible, Divine, Grungelicious & Then Some. I did read every step & the work you have put into them is overwhelming to me! It's absolutely No Surprise to see all your winner badges to right of your blog!
    My only problem with yr project is it makes me think I should sell all my crafty stash & give up. Your level of talent with these cases, especially for me the 'look' is how I wish my attempts would come even close to!!
    Outstanding! Tfs (I think?) :))

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  58. Let's make a statement: Your creations are incredible stunning (:o)

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  59. Wow - what a great creation - love it! Thanks for joining vintage udfordring.
    Big hug
    Andrea-Emmi41

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  60. Truly Amazing!! If you ever decide to do a full size version. I'd love to have a set like that.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Hugs Lynn

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  61. Beautiful project. Superb. Love all details. When I was scrolling down to leave a comment I have been reading them. I agree to all. Masterpiece.

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I really appreciate every comment - they make my crafting so much more worthwhile. Thank-you for stopping by. Nicola x