Mixed-media paper crafter; stamper, freelance craft tutor, designer of PaperArtsy JOFY stamps

23 December 2015

Final class of the year.... Part 2

.... a fun class creating this:

A 6x4 box canvas - people could make this with an initial of their choice - would make a cute gift..

and here are a few of the lovely colour variations created by the ladies in the class:

I'd demo'd painting the box in green and was really pleased when Denise (Denise, I think this is your  - apologies if its not) made hers using the same colour and pink flowers - one of my favourite colour combinations - so pretty!

I LOVE this yellow version - so bright and fresh and sunny! I think I may have mentioned on here how I am not a fan of yellow - but this project of Sue's may have converted me! Gorgeous. (Sue was wearing a cobalt blue top on the day so it looked even more striking against that!).

This blue and yellow version (Sue's) - again its swaying me towards yellow - love it - so fresh!

They all created beautiful projects.... I might have to rethink yellow!


Final class of the year.... Part 1...

... took place at Birds in the Barn, near Colchester in Essex... a 1/2 day demo and a class in the afternoon.

In the morning I worked with Emma Godfrey's new stamps for PaperArtsy - love these stamps!

They can be used in lots of ways... here are a few of my samples for, & from the day.. (please excuse the light quality!)... here are samples using EEG15:

Start of a journaling panel on chipboard/greyboard:  painted, printed with bubble wrap, stamped with images from EEG15 in 2 colours, the stars are from JOFY20 (on the top of the tree).

This is a more 'clean and simple version of the chipbard panel - this time as an 'any occasion' card.

This card started off as an experiment - one of the ladies at the demo (waving at you, Sue) thought that the swirls (running across the centre of the card above) could be flowers.. so we put together this card - the swirls had stems added, then I stamped on stems from JOFY12 (love these stems!)...

JOFY Collection 12
I added a touches of white to lift the images.  After the demo I attached the panel to a white panel and because I didn't have glue handy I attached it with staples.

This panel is a mix of demo'ing simple paint application techniques using Fresco Finish paints - the base is a colour blended background, stamped with bubble wrap, & using paint to stamp the images - the words across is just a reassuring phrase to not worry when you're painting backgrounds: its just paint on paper!

Here are samples using EEG13.. I wanted to show that this set is not just for love or valentines but when I look back at the samples they are a little bit loved-up! lol
This card is another clean-&-simple use of the stamps, this time from EEG13. (created by making a mask & stencil with the heart stamp and layering the images.)

 A page of book text rough whitewashed and rough painted again (when dry) with watercolour paints. The hearts are cut out of book text, glued in place and the edges darkened with paint and pencil.. the lines are hand drawn.

 This is a page created in my small sketchbook - pages are 6x4 - the dinky size is nice to work in - comfortable - and great for putting down quick thoughts.. The background was created by me cleaning off the roller and bubble wrap (there's the bubble wrap again! - I have bubble wrap and I'm not afraid to use it.. and use it... and use it...).  The three main hearts are stamped onto coloured paper, cut out, glued on and shaded around to make them lift of the page.

I {heart} the simplicity of this card - just two stamped images.  The heart is stamped on to a book page mounted onto card (to strengthen), cut out and suspended on a strip of acetate on the front of the card.

Then I started to mix it up a little...

Stamped the heart onto patterned paper, attached to the card and drew a stem.  Stamped small seedheads around the stem. I stamped and cut out leaves from green paper and attached these to the stem - now the heart is starts to look like a flower.

These stamps are lovely to work with - in stock at Birds in the Barn.


22 December 2015

Where did the time go!

I am off schedule with my christmas posts (lots of things going on here)  - I meant to blog this before now - better late than never I suppose!

Designed for a class at Forget Me Not Kraft Kabin in Rochford, its a 20cm board canvas - a sampler/patchwork of lots of this years christmas stamps and my go to christmas mini JM07.

A fun project - these look great framed (Ikea frames are a perfect and inexpensive option) so can be brought out each year.

ho ho ho

20 December 2015

Festive Upcycling...

... of a piece of Ikea furniture that kept on giving...

We bought a chair, and the chair is very nice.. but I think I was just as happy with the BIG cardboard box it came in as with the chair itself.. & we put the cardboard to good use...

* ... I made festive little trees form the very small off-cuts - little squares increasing in size cut from the cardboard, edged in glitter and glued together with matte medium (is there anything that can't be stuck together with Matte Medium?!):

Here they are in a little scene I made with bits and pieces.  The 'Noel' blocks were originally a hanging ornament but I prefer them horizontal.. a bit more versatile
Here is a close up and you can see the 'trees' on either side of the group - I think I want to add a star or 'something' to each of them....

*...  I created the solution to the 'we don't have anywhere to put christmas cards now that we don't have a mantelpiece or window ledges in the lounge anymore' problem (windows were replaced by doors, so no more ledges - I miss those useful ledges!).  I made a tree!!
I cut the cardboard into 10cm deep lengths, laid them out and cut them progressively longer to create a tree shape, and added a pot.

I attached them all together using a length of hessian 'ribbon', I used this rather than a strip of cardboard so the tree is flexible - I need to allow movement so that I could get behind each panel to staple the cards onto the tree....

Ta daaaaa:

A really simple tree - all we needed - to staple/paperclip cards to! Easy, lightweight & hung onto the door with a length of hessian rope, I decorated it with die cut stars, snowflakes and circles to pretty it up before the cards were attached.. (and hanging it on the door also stops people using the door - which is good as there a christmas tree on the other side! lol)

*... and finally - we cut the box up and made the prototypes for a shelving unit we're planning for the reconfigured lounge (next to the chair that started it all off):

That's our contribution to recycling/upcycling for the holiday season..  I hope its made you look at cardboard boxes in a new light :o)



19 December 2015

All nice things come in little packages...

... and little packages are what I created for the PaperArtsy blog this evening - click on the photo below to visit the blog..

The boxes I made for the blog post were all christmas themed.. so here I thought I'd show you a more general themed box... I really enjoyed making these.  On the tag I stamped a flower from JOFY22, on the box I used mini JM14.  The pink strip around the lid is washi tape, the green ribbon is from my stash.

Thanks for stopping by..


17 December 2015

Its beginning to look like christmas...

... for lots of reasons including:
* I heard Wham!'s 'Last Christmas' on the radio so its now officially christmas time! (in JoFYland anyway!)...
* people are blinging up their houses with fairy lights... so pretty - its disappointing when they're taken down.
* Our road had the annual fund raising visit from The Rotary Club and their (very jolly) Father Christmas accompanied by some very festive sparkly snowmen -when I initially looked out of the window and all I could see was one person wrapped in fairy lights & mistook them for a tipsy person wandering home after a christmas party! lol - but then I opened the door where one had been joined by others... they were a lot of fun... (question:  if its a flock of sheep or a herd of cows -I wonder what you'd call a group of snowmen.. a flurry maybe.. a flurry of snowmen...??)

* the main evidence of Christmas are the shop windows... I love looking at the displays.. here are a few of my favourites
 Accessorize have lovely windows throughout the year but this years woodland theme is magical.

The photos above and below are Anthropologie at Bluewater - the houses are made from CARDBOARD!! clever, very clever!

This is Jo Malone - the mistletoe window decal frame the topiary ball perfectly - so clean and crisp.

Thought this twig tree was really interesting, in one of the christmas decoration shop windows.

And of course the interiors' were lovely too - I liked this tag display in The White Company (this shop always looks, and SMELLS, gorgeous - an oasis of calm!) - looks like an upside-down christmas tree and the images on the tags are the decorations... 

and then there was this, in John Lewis - it made me chuckle because I reeeeaaally don't like brussel sprouts and here are banners and bunting featuring sparkly paper versions!  The only acceptable type of sprouts in my book! lol

I find the displays really inspiring - the colour schemes, the product arrangement &signage... This is the window at Anthropologie... the fabulous colours, textures and interesting bits & bobs... such a lovely opulent and natural mix.

 .. and finally this in one of the christmas decoration shops at Lakeside - every tree needs a diamante covered stag head!  or is that just for trees in Essex?.... lol
Love it!


16 December 2015

Deck the Halls...

... with festive bunting!!

This project was created for a class at That's Crafty in Romford.

It's made from greyboard, painted, stenciled and stamped with touches of glitter and sparkle ...  all very festive.

Pennants were given a frosty look with snowflakes (JM07) stamped in Metallic Glaze - I like how the snowflakes are only visible when the pennant catches the light. (The spotty background was created with the That's Crafty 'Bubbles' stencil)

Twiggy took centre stage against a snowy stenciled background (That's Crafty 'Snowflakes'), The tags on either side of him and text along the top of the pennant are from Emma Godfey's EEG12.

Round tags were decorated with stars from JOFY39, all the tags were stamped and painted on both sides just in case they turned around when hung.

This bunting was a lot of fun to create.  I really like the pieces as a length of pennants but the designs and layouts could easily transfer to cards or a canvas (I have an example that to show you in the next day or so)- or they could be tied as individual pennants onto a christmas tree.

ho ho ho


10 December 2015

A labour of love....

...  that we'll enjoy for the whole month of December...

The new advent calendar:

Last year after christmas I saw an advent calendar in the sale in Sainsburys - 24 little wood houses, the roof of each house lifts off so it can be filled with treats.. nice smooth surface for painting... well I couldn't NOT buy that could I?!

There was nothing wrong with them - just not my colour scheme... I planned to paint them in neutral colours so they could be hung on any tree... they could go on the main tree, or a garland or on their own tree as they have this year.

I love the end result, but they were a bigger job than I thought - TWENTY FOUR HOUSES... count them: TWENTY FOUR!! I'm just saying because I painted 18 of them with 2-3 layers of paint...(so technically that's 36 houses!) the festive spirit may have started to fade at some point - but it was worth it.
24 houses (there's that number again!) split into groups of 4 colour schemes, with 6 houses in each group.  It became a bit of a logistical juggle - I wanted my chosen colours to be used on each of the houses so remaining a group - (as the originals were - three colours used in different combinations)... I wanted the houses to be four different colours, the roofs four different colours too.... and I didn't want 2 dark houses together (at this point I may have started overthinking the whole project... lol)

The first thing I did was number the inside of the houses before I painted over the number on the outside- to keep the combinations evenly spaced - this was important if they were hung numerically along a banner - I wouldn't want to houses the same scheme side by side (not that I'm OCD or anything!)(ok, maybe a little bit)
House scheme A: 1,5,9,13,17,21
House scheme B: 2,6,10,14,18,22
House scheme C: 3,7,11,15,19,23
House scheme D: 4,8,12,16,20,24
It was the only way I could keep track of what I was doing!

I decided on colours - fairly neutral - Chalk, Snowflake, French Roast, Metallic Glaze, Slate and Annie Sloan Graphite chalk paint (I bought to paint a piece of furniture, its a lovely dark dark grey)...
I bought a couple of packs of snowflakes in Matalan that I wanted to use on the houses (I always head there at christmas - they often have really nice bits and pieces), book text  and corrugated card board (there's always corrugated cardboard isn't there lol).  The originally the houses were just painted - I wanted my make-over to have a bit more texture..  oh and glitter - there has to be glitter!

Here are the finished houses - they all follow the same format - snowflake on the front (attached with Matte Medium), snowflakes (JM07) stamped in Metallic Glaze stamped on the back with the number in Chalk or Black Archival ink on the back.. The number are a MaVinci stamp set called Fortress - I like this font because its a little bit distressed.

House scheme A:  Graphite house, with a Chalk room covered in book text that has been washed with diluted Chalk paint. The bottom edge of the house has been glittered with Stampendous Frantage Crushed Glass Glitter in Gold.

House scheme B: Painted  in Chalk, and the roof in Graphite. 

I thought the roof was too plain so I covered it wood effect scrapbook paper.. which was too white so I diluted a very small amount of French Roast and paint the roof... several times... until I achieved the colour I wanted...


House scheme D:  Slate roof, dry brushed with French Roast to break up the colour, & the ridges were edged with Stampendous Frantage Crushed Glass Glitter in Silver (seems to be more of a very pale gold - very pretty).  The house was covered in book text and white washed to soften the text.


House scheme D:  Slate house, with a Chalk roof covered in fine corrugation cardboard that has been 'peeled'.  I lightly dragged Matte Medium over the roof and sprinkled on Cosmic Shimmer Iced Snow Glitter Jewels - the glitter is translucent so is only seen when the light catches it.

Don't tell the other houses but I think 'House D' is my favourite - its grey (love grey), the glitter is so subtle, pretty & christmassy! (its closely followed by the book text house in my affections).

Here are the roofs:

... and the houses on the tree..  the plan for 'opening' the advent calendar is the houses are hung with numbers facing out, they once opened they re-hung with the snowflakes facing out...

These were quite a lot of work but were fun to decorate, and will come out for several christmases to come.

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