These two pages began as ‘clean up’ pages after completing pages in another art journal. I had some pink and brown paints left over and also some blue with brown. I used an old key card to lift the excess paint and swiped it onto the pages in my 6×6 kraft journal.
I didn’t have a plan straight away but a few weeks later I pulled out an Alexandra Renke stencil which I’d never used and decided to do a couple of simple landscape pages.
The stencil exposes only the edges of the birch trees which I wanted to be black so I mixed some black gesso with some black texture paste to make it thicker then spread it through the stencil onto the painted pages. Once it dried I painted the white spaces first with white gesso but it wasn’t opaque enough so I used Dr Ph Martin’s Bleedproof white paint.
After completing the trees I painted some snow covered hills with the same white paint and diluted them with water to reveal the land underneath. This is the opposite technique to my usual watercolour technique where I paint the shadows or hills and dilute the tops.
So far I have tried distress sprays, gel pens, acrylic paints and texture paste on the kraft pages. As long as I include some light colours in my designs the brown background words really well. Next experiment? Collage, stamping or maybe coloured pencils.
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I’ve been wanting to work with some of my new stencils and the CAS Mix Up challenge is currently a embossed stencil challenge so I got to work. I taped the Alexandra Renke ornament star stencil to a piece of hot pressed watercolour paper and started sponging some versamark ink through the stencil. I soon switched to just squishing the versamark ink pad directly on the stencil as that was faster. I embossed the star in clear powder then put the panel in a box so I could spray some stain over it without decorating myself or my desk.
I sprayed seedless preserves, faded jeans and speckled eggs distress stains over the panel from 20-30cm away and ended up with a pretty speckled panel. I wanted to make the spotted sprayed area transition from speckled to solid so I painted water over one edge then spritzed water next to the painted area which achieved my goal leaving some of the panel barely touched by water. It took quite a while to dry and impatient me did smudge some of the speckles but they are underneath the die cut letters now so no harm done.
I applied tape to the back of a piece of co-ordiating cardstock then cut the letters s,t,a,r out using the ‘Heather lowercase alphabet’ die set from Pink Fresh studio. I searched through my stamps and dies to find a sentiment I could alter to say ‘you’re a’ and ended up using part of a stamp from the MFT ‘Yay for You’ set stamped in versafine monarch ink.
When I was doing the spray over embossing step I realised this stencil is probably going to pair up with spray stains again in an art journal page, the speckled effect over the lacy star is just so pretty.
I’m excited to participate in a challenge again, it has been a while! There is still time to get involved if, like me you have stencils that are waiting patiently to be the star or even the background of a card.
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I’ve been playing with pretty paper again and have the Foiled Fox to thank for this lovely Alexandra Renke design. Make sure you pop over to the Foiled Fox blog where I’m sharing my process in making today’s cards. I believe I said it last time I worked with AR papers, the colours and patterns are so lovely I really don’t want to add much over the top.
For both cards I covered the whole front with AR ‘Autumn Plant Rose’ paper. The delicate floral design covers most of the paper so I didn’t want to add too much that would clash with the paper. I chose instead to die-cut cream flowers and birds as focal images, keeping them cream coloured and stacked made them stand out from the background pattern. The tall flower die is from Penny Black and is called ‘shall we dance’. I like the way the long thin stems mimic the thin lines of the paper’s design.
Adding the same die cut on the inside of the card was a must and simple to do after first adding stick it adhesive to the back of the patterned paper.
I used the same design idea and stacked three bird die-cuts for the second card and added a single patterned die-cut on the inside of the card. The die is called ‘the sweetest song’ and is another PB one.
I debated whether or not to add any sentiments and ended up deciding on one with and one without.
I will be doing more with this lovely paper and a pink abstract paper also by AR. I’ve linked the papers and supplies below and look forward to sharing more designs with you soon. Make sure you click over to the Foiled Fox and check out all the Alexandra Renke papers.
I don’t often use patterned paper on my projects but when I saw these Alexandra Renke designs from The Foiled Fox I wanted to make ALL THE THINGS and cover them with this paper! To be honest I just wanted to stick pieces of this ‘autumn dragonfly’ paper on the front of cards and call them done! The blue background is beautiful; the dragonflies are delicate and pretty and there are little gold lines here and there. What more do you need on a card front?
I did add a few of my own touches to the cards in the end but I might still make dragonfly paper card fronts which are simple and unadorned. Because of the little bits of gold here and there on the dragonfly wings I chose gold cardstock and embossing powder for my added elements. I swiped a versamark along edges of the dragonfly panels then embossed them with gold powder.
I used a co-ordinating Alexandra Renke paper on both card fronts. It’s called ‘autumn wild dark blue’ and it looks like a painted page. I popped up the dragonfly pieces on foam and added a gold embossed sentiment plus letters or words die cut from gold shimmer cardstock. I used the PB …birthday die paired with part of a sentiment from PB ‘good wishes’ set. I did all the lining up of panels with the help of the Wendy Vecchi art staytion. The board is metallic and has a magnetic ruler which can hold a panel in place while lined up with the grid lines on the board. It has saved me quite a bit of time and fidddling!
I think this paper would look good as a notebook cover and maybe as the background for an art journal page. What do you create with your prettiest papers?
Thank you for all your lovely comments about my recent art journal page. I’m glad you enjoyed it. I have a couple more pages in process in my journals which I look forward to showing you in the future. I would love to hear from other art journallers. What are some of your favourite mediums and techniques?
Today’s cards are made with my latest fave: the gelli plate! I am very much a beginner but learning as I go and watching the myriad of techniques shared on the Gelli Arts youtube channel. The panels in today’s cards were made by printing layer after layer while rearranging die cut paper butterflies and blossoms on top of each new layer of paint. The dies are Penny Black ‘monarch’ and cherry blossom’.
I wont’ try to describe my process because I don’t remember exactly what my order was or what paint colours I used. I know there was green, white, burgandy, gold and pink liquitex basic acrylics but there could have been more. Like many artistic techniques success with a layered gelli print can be knowing when to stop. Once I was happy with the one above I still had paint and pattern showing on the gelli plate so I added one more layer of paint then pulled a ghost print (I’m learning the lingo!) on patterned paper. The paper I chose was a woodgrain print from Alexandra Renke.
You can see the woodgrain print through the paint and pattern. I ended up matting both panels in burgandy cardstock then attaching them to a base panel of the same AR woodgrain paper.
It’s always hard to capture shimmer on camera but all three panels have gold shimmer on them so I added some gold accents to each one. On the top panel I stamped the PB script stamp, embossed in gold powder and matted the panel with gold cardstock. On the card above I added a gold embossed sentiment from the PB set happy snippets and stamped the same script stamp in chianti versafine clair. On the card below I stamped the script stamp in shady lane versafine clair ink and added a gold vellum die cut butterfly, the same butterfly used as a mask in the gel printing process.
I love all the texture from the gelli printing process, the paint which builds up after several layers of printing adds so much interest
After making a gift set of cards with the ‘blissbloss’ stamp I was inspired follow the same process with another stamp set. This time I used Alexandra Renke’s pretty poppy stamp set and her poppy dies. I used Catherine Pooler inks for the watercolour effect on the poppies and for the tiny sentiments.
I started with a 10″x7″ panel of hot pressed watercolour paper. There are five poppy stamps in the set so I positioned them randomly over the panel while in the stamp positioner. I inked the petals first in samba ink then dabbed some rockin’ red ink on the sides or edges but not covering the whole flower. I spritzed then stamped. I wiped off the stamps then inked the stems in eucalyptus ink and stamped again. I moved the panel and repeated the process to fill the panel with poppies. In order to get even spacing I had to clean and reposition the stamps a couple of times but eventually I had the panel covered. At this point I changed my mind and crowded in a few more flowers in a couple of areas using the CP bellini ink along with CP samba to make paler poppies. I added some eucalyptus ink splatter and some gold splatter using one of the gansai tambi gold paints then called it complete.
To create the cards I cut some panels to 5 ½” so they would stretch the length or height of the card and used co-ordinating cardstock to frame and mat the panels. I also cut several poppies using the Alexandra Renke poppy flower dies in light peach, dark peach and light gold cardstock. I don’t have a formula for creating five cards from the panel; basically I played with ideas until they looked ok!
The poppy stamp set has the same seven sentiments in English, French, German and Spanish so I stamped sentiments on a few of the panels using the same word in four languages to fill spaces between the poppies. On one card I needed a larger sentiment so I used a Penny Black stamp from the ‘happy snippets’ set.
I used light weight vellum over one of the watercolour panels to soften the colours and make the die cuts stand out.
I’m hoping to sell cards at a market in the not too distant future so having a few gift sets might be a good idea.
Stamps: poppy flower set (Alexandra Renke)
Dies: poppy flower dies (Alexandra Renke)
Cardstock: hot pressed watercolour, Neenah cream, light weight vellum, light gold, dark peach, light peach
Inks: samba, rockin’ red, bellini, eucalyptus (Catherine Pooler)
Paint: gansai tambi starry colours
Also: stamp positioner, diamond glaze, gold cord
I know what you are thinking. What could have inspired me to create a sparkly pink and purple birthday card? A sweet five year old girl! She loves texture so I am hoping the raised glitter embossing, surprisingly silky sparkle ribbon and the raised sentiment will also appeal.
I used a beautiful quarter circle stencil by Alexandra Renke which I am looking forward to using on future projects. I blended four colours of distress oxide inks on neenah solar white cardstock first as I wanted to add the glittery embossing powder over the top. I made sure the ink was totally dry and also used a powder tool before pressing versamark ink through the stencil onto the panel. The embossing powder is WOW fairy dust which is very silvery and sparkly despite what my photos show.
I wrapped the panel with a bit of silky smooth glitter ribbon brought home from France by my partner in craft, embossed the MFT sentiment in silver powder and popped it up over the ribbon. All the product names are linked below. I realize this may not seem like a little girl card, after all there are no princesses, unicorns or cute animals. Since my children became grownups I haven’t really made many child cards. Do you make cards for children? What sets them apart from your other cards?
Stencil: mandala (AR)
Stamp: birdie brown greetings galore
Inks: blueprint sketch, picked raspberry, dusty concord, seedless preserves distress oxide inks & versamark
Also: Ranger silver embossing powder, WOW fairy dust embossing powder, silver ribbon
It’s all soft and subtle on the blog today. I have two projects featuring the beautiful Alexandra Renke cardstock the Foiled Fox recently started carrying in their store. The weight of the cardstock is somewhere between a good quality printer paper and a piece of cardstock. There is definitely enough weight to die cut nicely.
I chose the elegant ‘whirl wreath’ by Penny Black and cut one out of ‘pink dots’ cardstock. I attached it around the centre circle with adhesive but left the branches unattached ( so I will be careful putting it in a envelope) The background is ‘rose stripes’ which matches the pink dots perfectly. I cut the bow out of a piece of cardstock from my stash and layered a few together to give it some extra weight. I blended around the edge of the striped panel with tattered rose distress ink and attached everything to a cream cardbase.
I chose to add a natural twine bow to the die cut bow then had to co-ordinate the sentiment with antique linen distress ink.
For my little neighbourhood card I use three patterns of Alexandra Renke cardstock, the rose stripes, gray stripes and medium mud watercolour. I know it is hard to see the details of the die cuts in my photo but in real life the pink striped neighbourhood is clear against two lines of gray striped trees in front of a gray mud starry sky.
I have been wanting to try a white on white layered die cut scene and I probably still will but chose to try it with these pretty papers first. The neighbourhood is layered over two layers of trees cut with the ‘trees and hills’ dies which are layered over a gray piece cut with the starry sky night die attached directly to a white card base.
I featured some of the subtle colours and patterns from Alexandra Renke today but I do have some bold patterns and solids to share another day.
Have a great weekend.
Stamps: Christmas sentiments, winter days (PB)
Dies: whirl wreath, neighbourhood border, starry night die, trees & hills die set (PB)
Cardstock: Alexandra Renke medium mud watercolor, gray stripes, rose stripes & Neenah solar white, cream, pink
Inks: tattered rose, antique linen distress ink, smokey gray versafine ink
Also: hemp twine