Saturday 12 April 2014

A Little Blue Egg

Hi there! It’s a record for me - three posts in three days so thank-you so much for popping by again! I certainly have been busy and it has been a great compliment to be invited to do so many Guest Design slots.

Today I’m really happy to have been selected to enjoy the guest design limelight at one of my favourite challenges - the always pretty Sugar Creek Hollow. Their current challenge theme is ‘Easter’. I was going to go with traditional yellow shades but just couldn’t put down these gorgeous lilac and blue papers so have ended up with more of a gentle lavender Easter! I think that blue egg is going to hatch any day now!

Papers: Maja Design ‘Vintage Spring’ collection

Dies: Sizzix Bigz ‘Bird Scroll’ and On-the-edge ‘Vintage Doily’

Stencilling: Crafty Individuals and Heidi Swapp stencils using Wendy Vecchi texture paste

Distress Inks: ‘Weathered Wood’, 'Dusty Concord'

Other: Frantage ‘Shabby Blue’, paper doily, cheesecloth, gems, Prima resin bird-house, flowers, punched branches and hand dyed silk ribbon

Sincere thanks to all at Sugar Creek Hollow for kindly inviting me to Guest Design. Be sure to check out their challenge for some of the very best vintage / shabby chic talents in blogland.

Thank-you so much for visiting and taking the time,
Enjoy the rest of your weekend.
Nicola x

I wish to enter card to the following challenges:
Craft for the Craic - Easter or Spring
Crafty Individuals - Nature's Beauty
The Ribbon Girl Challenge - Spring
Simon Says Wednesday - Easter / Sweet Treats
It's All About the Vintage and Beauty - Shabby Chic
Moving Along With The Times - Easter / Spring
A Creative Romance - Eggcellent Spring
Inspiration Journal - A Few of my Favourite Things

Friday 11 April 2014

Un Peu Français (A Little Bit French)

Hello all and thank-you so much for visiting. A warm welcome too to new followers!

Fellow admirers of vintage genre / Tim Holtz will probably be well aware of fabulous new challenge ‘A Vintage Journey’. I was over the moon happy to have won their inaugural challenge for my ‘vintage suitcases’ project. I’m thus thrilled to be Guest Designing at their blog today for their current challenge with theme ‘A Little Bit French’.

As my 'suitcases' project involved the more traditional shabby aging techniques (with lots of shades of battered brown) I challenged myself to make something without any brown ink. Pairing this with the theme of ‘A Little Bit French’ I found myself reminiscing about my four Parisian visits, one of which included a day tour to nearby Palace of Versailles. The main colour that came to mind was GOLD! Lots of it! So I teamed gold with the traditional French red, white and blue and came up with a ornate gilded scene of how the sights of Paris might have looked centuries ago (excuse any time anomalies!)

I’ve altered a Prima ornate metal frame. It came in a shade of blue which I lathered with gesso and coats of white paint. The back of the frame is detachable so that one can decorate its two sides and better place embellishments inside.

Here you can see the background more closely:

Background: Coat of Paper Artsy 'Old Gold', followed by layer of crackle, then painted with coat of 'Snowflake' - this gave lots of lovely golden crackles. Next, stamped an ornate gold chandelier and randomly stamped lots of French text and doo dads in red and blue ink (Archival 'Hydrangea' and 'Red Geranium'). To tone that down then applied Distress Stain 'Picket Fence' and Paper Artsy metallic glaze. Then stencilled lots of lavish flourishes with a Crafters Workshop stencil and texture paste. Next, painted the top of all the stencilled work with Krylon gold leafing pen in two shades.

The Mona Lisa: Stamped Tim Holtz 'Paris Collage' onto cream muslin and embossed with black ep. Then coloured with DIs (Tea Dye, Weathered Wood and Bundled Sage). Heat dried inks. Affixed image into a Melissa Frances resin frame that I've been hoarding for ages. Painted the raised parts and sides of frame with Krylon gold leafing pens and covered Mona with lots of glossy accents to dry overnight. (Actually did this twice - the first attempt was with crackle accents but didn't like the result so re-tried with glossy accents and happy with outcome).

Other Paris landmarks: La Tour Eiffel and L'Arc de Triomphe are stamped on acetate using an Artemio set and embossed with copper ep. I would have loved to have Tim's stamp of the Moulin Rouge but couldn't locate one in time so cheated and printed stamp out on gold card instead. Affixed a gilded cog and metal bit to it also.

Carriage: The gorgeous chipboard carriage came in a giveaway. I coloured the wheels with gold leaf pen and attached 2 of Tim's hitch fasteners and a gilded game spinner. Then inked the top with red distress marker followed by several coats of UTEE to give it a nice gloss. Added some gilded metal bead string for 'reins'.

Other decoration to front: Diecut the pennants from faux leather papers. Stamped / embossed some black text on acetate and affixed around project. I'm dating the scene to the month of April so have gilded some chipboard blossoms and dotted same with white snow pen. Added too a dictionary definition for 'amour' and little golden butterflies.

Inner and outer frame sides.

I took 2 sheets of Neenah cardstock and splattered with lots of gold and copper paints using Liquitex splatter brush. Heat dried. Then embossed sheets with Tim's Eiffel Tower / French Script texture fades.

Applied variously blue and red archival inks to brayer and rolled it over the embossed edges. Heat dried as I went with each colour. Cut into long strips and painted with a pearlescent paint. Once dry, sprayed each strip with water so that it would be roll nicely into place around inner and outer sides.

Finally, a view of the back.

As outlined above achieved gold crackle lines with Paper Artsy paints. Printed out a music sheet of song 'April in Paris'. Also 'cheat' printed one of Tim's letter stamps on gold card. Stamped the Bird Branch once onto tissue and again as if positioned across the music sheet. Pasted the stamped tissue with multi-medium matte glue so that it 'melted' in. Using Tim's new butterflies decorative strip diecut little faux leather butterflies and arranged around bird, together with some flowers. Rubbed gilding wax on metal charms and affixed.

Et, c'est ça!! Thanks again to all at A Vintage Journey - it's been a pleasure to make this little french scene and feature today at your blog.

Thanks to all for visiting - it's been lovely having you drop by.

Have a super weekend,
Nicola x

I wish to enter altered frame to the following challenges:
Simon Says Monday Challenge - Journey
Craft Hoarders Anonymous - Pick a Stamp / Any stamp
Inspiration Journal - A few of my favourite things
Eileen Hull - Art With Heart challenge - April Showers
Vintage Stamping Challenges - Anything Goes
Rhedd's Creative Spirit - Altered Art
The Artistic Stamper - Embossing & Texture
The Kraft Journal - Paris or France

Thursday 10 April 2014

Flights of Fancy

Hello and Welcome.

Today I’m delighted to be guest designing with the wonderful Frilly & Funkie Challenge as I won one of their recent challenges for my card here. Their current challenge theme is ‘Flights of Fancy’, (to include wings and inspired by the onset of Spring), so my card shows lots of butterflies and a little bird waiting for her eggs to hatch.

I was most fortunate to win a very generous giveaway of Maja Design papers from the lovely Jenny so I'm happy to be properly taking them out to play. All the papers used are from the gorgeous Maja ‘Vintage Spring’ Collection.

Here is a side shot so that you can better see the box like nest. I’ve used the Sizzix scalloped envelope die and then threaded through some cord to pull the sides together. The nest is lined with frilled ribbon, moss and various punched branches and diecuts and some nice candied eggs.

Papers: Maja Design ‘Vintage Spring’ Collection

Dies: Sizzix Bigz ‘Scalloped Envelope’, ‘Pocket Watch’ and ‘Sized Circles’. Magnolia ‘Heart Flourish’. Cheery Lynn ‘ Mini Fanciful Flourish’

Punches: Martha Stewart ‘Branch’ and ‘Vintage Lace’ edger

Distress Inks: Weathered Wood, Bundled Sage,Tattered Rose

Flowers: Wild Orchid Crafts and Jeans

Thank-you so much to all at Frilly and Funkie for allowing me feature at their blog today. If you aren’t already familiar with the challenge then you really should check it out for superb inspiration, excellent tutorials and a great challenge with chance of prize.

As always, thank-you for stopping by – all your visits, comments and followings are truly appreciated.

I’ll have another special post for you tomorrow so I do hope to see you back again soon.

Nicola x

I wish to enter card to the following challenges:
Country View Challenges - New Beginnings
It's All about the Vintage - Shabby Chic
Simon Wednesday - Happy Easter / Sweet Treats
Crafty Hands Devon - Anything Goes
Moving along with the times - Easter / Spring
Craft for the Craic - Easter or Spring
Inspiration Journal - A Few of my Favourite Things