Quick inky sky

I’ve made many of these snowy scenes over the years but this was one of the quickest because the scene is all in one stamp. I already had a piece of hot pressed watercolour paper splattered with masking fluid, so that also cut out some time.

I stamped the PB ‘gorgeous grove’ stamp in versafine clair morning mist ink which I think I like better than black when the sky is not very dark. After stamping I added a frisket film circle mask which I did not seal perfectly but that’s ok; there’s a bit of cloud cover creeping over the moon.

I didn’t want to spend too much time choosing colours so I just pulled out three of the newest distress inks. I’m still experimenting with the new colours so I started by painting salvaged patina around the moon then blending it with water to fill the top half of the panel above the horizon. Next I added prize ribbon ink just about everywhere and then some dabs of kitsch flamingo. I would not normally use these three colours together but it worked as distress blends often do. Once the sky was painted I dried the panel before using the same inks to paint shadows in the foreground and behind the snowy hill. The words are from PB ‘Christmas sentiments’ set stamped in morning mist to match the trees.

By the way I have a little sale going on over at my online classes site. If you use the code HTNOV you can get a 25% discount on the Floral Faves class, Winter Wonder class and the Colour Clues class.

Supplies


Let Heaven and Nature Sing

This sweet bird is one of four in the Penny Black set ‘Nature Sings’. It is my plan to make a similar card with all four birds. I returned to a very clean and simple style for this one utilising some masking, blending and watercolour.

I worked on hot pressed watercolour paper because I knew I would watercolour the bird. Before stamping I tore a post-it note mask and lay it across the panel then blended speckled egg ink above it. I stamped the bird in soft stone papertrey ink then watercoloured with a few distress inks. The colours are listed below. The bird was floating in mid air so I drew a branch with a watercolour pencil then painted it with distress inks so he would have somewhere to perch. At this point I added a second area of masked blending to the background.

To finish off I stamped one of the sentiments from the same set in fallen leaves versafine clair ink. It just so happens that the CAS Christmas Card challenge this month is Christmas Critters so I am in!

Supplies


Back on Craft Roulette

I was once again a guest crafter on Craft Roulette last Friday night and it was loads of fun. Mary Gunn, the host keeps the action going with crafting, chatting, and sharing over eighty card samples made by viewers. To see Mary and I chat and create pop over to the Craft Roulette youtube channel. (To just watch the card making part you can skip to 55:11)

Craft Roulette is a crafting game show where a wheel is spun four times to choose four parameters which must be used on the project being created live during the show. Last Friday the parameters were:

Card type: ‘Lil Chubby’ ( like a slimline but wider)

Colour choice: Warm colours

Element: ‘It’s a sign’

Random: Crumpled paper

The finished card is 4″x 8″ with a blended background that I patterned with a wet crumpled tissue. The colours are warm and that banner die looks like a ‘sign’ to me so I squeaked it in.

It was lovely to see some familiar names in the chat, encouraging me and asking questions. Thank you Karen for staying up late in Wales to watch. I didn’t see all the chat because, well, I had to do some crafting but I was able to read some of it. My dad watched from Australia and was chatting along.

There is definitely an added pressure when crafting live but it is all great fun and the community is such a friendly supportive one. If you have never watched Craft Roulette, I highly recommend!

Supplies


Festive Fragrance

Isn’t this ‘festive fragrance‘ a pretty stamp? I know it is part of the PB Christmas release but it looks like an all-year-rounder to me. Just switching the colours around could make it quite springy or even autumnal. That’s the kind of stamp I like.

I chose to work with muted greens and blues plus a couple of berry colours. I inked with distress inks and markers plus a couple of Staedtler brush markers. I heard recently the sad news that distress markers are being discontinued so I am looking at my other markers to see which ones I might switch to when my distress markers can give no more. I think more than anything it is the colours of the distress markers that make me happy. Often when you buy a set of markers such as a 12 or 18 set many of the colours are bold rather than muted. There is a basic orange, red, yellow, light blue, dark blue, etc. You don’t find any stormy skies or picked raspberries!

Anyway enough about that; I will keep you posted on my discoveries and choices. I used the mix of colours listed in the supplies below to ink all the foliage and used both faded jeans and weathered wood for the vases. The stamp was brand new when I inked it and I didn’t do any conditioning (such as wiping it or sanding it) so the ink beaded in a few places giving me a patchy look. I inked and stamped again for all but that tall bit of foliage. That one on the left I kept patchy as I liked the lacey look.

Once I had stamped and blended all the leaves and vases, I wanted to ground the collection somehow so I used a blending brush to add weathered wood ink to the base and side of the panel. I then painted shadows next to the vases with faded jeans ink. I finished the design off with a sentiment from the PB ‘happy & bright’ set knowing I would have to choose a bolder, darker ink so it would show up over the stamped vases. It is not as distinct as I would like but when the recipient looks at it up close it will be fine.

I hope you have had a chance to view the short video about my new class, ‘Wreaths – Stamped & Painted‘. Registration is open, a couple of lessons are already published and all the content will be accessible tomorrow. It is full of simple but pretty wreath designs, some very festive, others more rustic. I have included some technique lessons to show how I paint leaves and filler elements too so you can design with stamps plus your own unique touches. The giveaway is still open on my previous post where you have a chance to win a spot in the class. Make sure you pop back there and tell me how your Christmas card making is going. I see some of you have finished, some are barely started and some don’t go down that path. I think I am over half way with mine, largely because I created many wreath cards in preparation for the class!

One more bit of exciting news before I go. I am back on CRAFT ROULETTE this Friday as the guest crafter. Join me if you can on YouTube and drop a hello in the chat.

Supplies


Christmas Blush

This pretty rose surrounded by leaves and needles is called ‘Christmas Blush’ and is another beauty from the Penny Black ‘Keeping Spirits Bright’ release. Even though it is part of a Christmas release I think I will use it year round. It’s quite a large stamp so I have made a 6¼” x 4½” card.

I used a technique similar to a favourite from a few years ago when I would ink my rubber stamps with distress stains. The distress stains first came in daubers which made it possible to ink a stamp with a very juicy amount of ink. To replicate that I inked with a stamp pad then spritzed generously before stamping.

I inked the rose first in wild honey and kitsch flamingo, cleaned off the surrounding area then inked the foliage with rustic wilderness and iced spruce. Next I spritzed the stamp with water and stamped in the stamp positioner. There was enough ink still on the stamp to spritz it again and stamp it on the other end of the watercolour paper panel. While the ink was still wet on the paper I blended with a wet paintbrush, adding extra ink where necessary. I often watercolour outline stamps this way, the difference this time being how wet the ink was hitting the paper. I was looking for excess ink so the painting would be loose rather than precise.

After blending ink inside all the leaves and petals I dried the image and used blending brushes to add both green inks around the edges of the card and a little wild honey in the centre. I splattered water over the panel several times before dabbing it off with a paper towel to leave watermarks in both the blended and stamped areas. I added some green splatter and a sentiment from the PB ‘Christmas feeling’ set stamped in morning mist versafine clair ink.

I like this loose watercolour look and also the fact that it didn’t take anywhere near the time a more precise no-line watercolouring approach would take. I’m sure I will take more time over this stamp another day with another colour scheme; it’s too pretty not to.

Supplies

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Beautify – Video

Today I have a second Christmas card featuring new rubber cling stamps from the Penny Black ‘Keeping Spirits Bright’ release. This one, ‘Beautify‘ is a garland shape but instead of stamping it across the card from side to side I have used it to create festive foliage hanging down. I love being able to use my stamps in multiple ways, sometimes the changes are through colour but other times I use part of a stamp or repeat impressions with a stamp.

I filmed my process while creating this card so you can see the step-by-step in the video below. As the foliage is all quite small I used distress markers for the inking then blended some leaves after stamping. I upgraded the berries from distress ink to pearlescent paint to give them more prominence and a little shine.

I’m sure you will see this stamp again perhaps positioned in a more traditional garland orientation. Looking at this stamp makes me want to make my own fresh garlands but I’m not sure that’s going to happen. Have you made a fresh garland or wreath? Did it have a high fiddliness factor? I even borrowed a book from the library with the how-to.

Although I have not made any fresh wreaths yet I have been designing, stamping and painting wreaths for my new online card class. It is nearly ready to share so stay tuned for all the details.

Supplies

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Alight

I’d like to introduce ‘Alight’ a lovely stamp from the new Penny Black release. I have teamed up with the Foiled Fox to share this pretty little bird so you can find me over there today too. Make sure you click over to see more of the new release in their shop and plenty of inspiration on their blog.

The new ‘Making Spirits Bright’ release includes some lovely wintry images, several easily large enough to fill a card front. This card is just under 6½” x 4¾”, larger than my usual size. I worked on hot pressed watercolour paper with masking fluid splattered on it and painted the background first. By ‘painted’ I mean smooshed the ink on my glass mat, diluted it with a few spritzes of water and swiped the panel through the liquid. I was after some pale swooshy colours in the background and used inks that were going to feature in the stamped design.

I worked in the stamp positioner the whole time so I could add ink bit by bit. I completed the bird first inking the edges in fossilized amber, pumice stone and speckled egg. I inked and stamped a couple of times then added some water to blend and cover each section. I didn’t want each colour to blend too much with the one beside it so I didn’t drown either the stamp or the page with water.

I made sure the bird was dry before adding the beak, eye and legs so they would stay distinct and not blend into the rest of the bird. For the leaves and berries I just picked one green and one purple, unusual for me; I often blend two greens for leaves. To add light and shadow I blended over the forest moss and seedless preserves stamping with a bit of water keeping some areas dark and other diluted.

The sentiment is from the new PB ‘happy & bright’ set stamped in shady lane versafine clair ink. How are you going with your Christmas card making. At the beginning of this year I resolved to make at least one Christmas card each month. We are in the tenth month and I have managed to make six (including this one!) I do have a new online class coming soon though which is full of Christmas card designs so I will have more than six on hand! I also have an in-person class at the beginning of November, so samples from that one will also boost my supply.

Thanks for dropping by today.

Supplies

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Autumn in the mountains

Outdoors is pretty ‘speccy’ right now. We don’t have too much of the deep red yet but I have seen it here and there. I have got into the habit of going for a walk or run soon after breakfast so I’ve seen the increase in autumn colours over the last few weeks. Yesterday there was fog when I set out so everything was a bit more muted but by the time I headed home the sun was burning off the fog and the golden tones were shining.

The first step in creating this scene was to stamp the top half of the mountain stamp (PB picturesque) in faded jeans and speckled egg distress inks on hot pressed watercolour paper. I painted below the mountains with water softening the colours at the bottom so there was no distinct line where the mountains ended. I then painted over the top of the mountains with water and dropped some spiced marmalade, forest moss and ground espresso ink into the wet area to add colour.

I dried the panel before starting on the trees using the PB arbors stamp. I stamped with ground espresso, fossilized amber, spiced marmalade and crackling campfire, not all at once, a couple of colours at a time to build up the coverage. I spritzed the stamp before stamping but didn’t spritz the paper.

When I was satisfied with the trees I painted ground underneath them and dried the panel again before blending speckled egg ink in the sky and below the branches. To finish I splattered both water and fossilized amber ink to break up the expanses of blue.

Supplies

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2021 BuJo – October theme

I had no trouble choosing a theme for October in my bullet journal, would it be leaves, leaves or leaves? I die-cut a surround circle mask to protect most of the page, a technique I used in August, April and January. I cut leaf masks from post-it notes using the ‘autumn jewels’ dies from Penny Black.

The same mix of inks carries through on all the pages blending yellows, brown, green and red over the masks with blending brushes.

I added hand lettered titles with a brown papermate flair pen and some shimmer with a nuvo gold shimmer pen.

When I cut the leaf masks I had both the negative space mask used on the pages above and the leaf itself which I used on the calendar page below.

There is a bit of shimmer on the title letters of October but it doesn’t really show up in the photos. It will make me happy each time I turn to the page. Have a lovely October.

Supplies

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Blended Autumn Bouquet

Today’s card is a second look with the Penny Black ‘autumn bouquet’ stamp. I blended distress inks over a panel of hot pressed watercolour paper before doing any stamping. The colours are listed below.

After blending I stamped the autumn bouquet stamp twice on the panel with brushed corduroy distress ink then painted inside all the leaves, berries and wheat stalks with water. As I painted I also dabbed away water leaving the insides of the images lighter than the outside. I picked up some smooshed ink and dropped it back into the round berries and the wheat berries.

I splattered some water over the panel, let it sit then dabbed it away with paper towel leaving a random pattern of watermarks here and there. The embossed sentiment is from the PB ‘million thanks’ set stamped in fallen leaves versafine clair ink.

Thank you for dropping by. I am indeed grateful for all your support and kindness.

Supplies

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