Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Tim Holtz Style Christmas Countdown Mini Book

Hello Everyone! and welcome to my finished Christmas Countdown Book. I have already shared a few photographs of some of the pages, but here it is in its entirety. It has been great fun putting this together and using some of my favourite Tim Holtz stash!

The inspiration to make the book came after seeing Jenny Marples' (Pushing the Right Buttons) wonderful Tim Holtz Style December Daily 2017 - a fabulous book for the whole of the month. 

My book is very vintage inspired and is a flip over on a stand (details at the end of the post) with the cover of the book being the page for 25 December. 

The pages have been made back to back - so the first twelve days flip over and then the book is turned around for the next twelve days. Here are some favourite pages:

And here is a video slideshow of all the pages so you can see the book in its entirety:

My husband Terry made the stand for me. It has lead weighted base so will take a reasonably heavy book and has two "gaps" so that the two book back covers can be placed inside the frame so the whole thing is very sturdy.

I have used all my favourite Tim Holtz goodies: the Christmas Stack of papers (8 x 8), Art Dolls, Christmas Ephemera Pack, Christmas dies (old and new), Small Talk stickers, Christmas Quote Chips and various other Ideology metal pieces. 

The base of the stand is decorated with two of my handmade Christmas flowers using Tim's Tattered Poinsettia die.

The whole process has been so much fun (I just love making little collages and the 6 x 4 pages were just a perfect size). I can't wait now for the 1st December! It is a tradition in our family that the house is only decorated for Christmas a couple of days before (my parents both had their birthdays in the week before Christmas and Mum liked to keep birthdays separate and is something we have continued). I thought it would be lovely to have a little corner on the dresser with my flip over Christmas Countdown Book along with an Advent Candle. It will feel as though Christmas is coming!

Thank you for joining me today and happy crafting!

Jennie x

Saturday, 18 November 2017

Heartfelt Journal - My Story I Will Share

Hello and Welcome! 

Although my Eileen Hull Heartfelt Journal has been shared previously on my blog, I had not detailed how I had made the covers. So I have done a small step by step of how the covers were created and a small slideshow of the first signature in the book.  

Unfortunately I decided to do this on a very stormy afternoon here in Shetland and so some of the photographs are a bit of an odd colour!

I used Daler and Rowney mount board for my covers and gave them a good coat of gesso. Then I added some texture paste through two of my favourite stencils by 13 Arts.

I am not too bothered if bits are missing here and there!

My favourite way of getting colour onto the board is by using PaperArtsy Infusions. These little pots are really fabulous but ..... and this is what I love ..... each time you use them you get a slightly different effect depending on how much of the walnut stain comes out of the bottle.

I like to go in with plenty of water and take quite a bit off rather than trying to do it gently.

I love adding the Distress Oxides to the Infusions - the blending seems a little heavy handed but once spritzed with water it does disappear! I blended Vintage Photo first then a little Walnut Stain around the edges.

I love the mottled, worn look (the skies must have been very heavy at this point!)

So now back to the original book and you can see how I layered my Ephemera. I have not used any foam patches, just glued everything down but those nearer the top are not glued right to the edges, so they appear to "float".  

And not forgetting the back of the journal!

This journal is to be a story of me - life, loves and achievements. So far I have only created the first signature for my childhood and teenage years - now to start filling in the details.

I think the video is best viewed on Youtube - I am still learning about resolution!

As always thank you for joining me and happy crafting!

Jennie x

Thursday, 16 November 2017

A is for .........

You can find out if you hop on over to the Calico Craft Parts blog to see my post today which features a rusty steampunk letter A. 

Hope to see you there!

Jennie x

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Eileen Hull Yearly Journal : Inside Pages Slideshow

Hello Everyone and welcome to this blog post about this rather HuGE journal I have been working on since the end of September. 

I blogged about our wonderful weekend in this post a couple of days ago Eileen Hull meets PaperArtsy. I promised a blog post about the inside pages, but there are WAY too many to share as photographs so I decided to attempt my first slideshow (I hope it comes out ok! - at the time of writing this I am not too sure ..... )

I have three signatures in my book which I had intended to be my gardening year Spring, Summer and Autumn/Winter. But I realised as I started making it that it was not going to work as a gardening diary, but .... would work well as a yearly diary, with thoughts and ideas and family gatherings on a month by month basis. I have left myself some writing room, but not much and have instead used many of my favourite papers and layered embellishments. It grew rather large but I love it.

I would like to add my journal to the Mini Album Makers November Challenge (although it is not much of a mini!). There are some lovely inspirational books by the Design Team, so do hope on over!

Thank you for joining me today.

Jennie x

PS : The slideshow did work but you might want to watch it on Youtube as the resolution is not very good. All a big learning curve!

Sunday, 12 November 2017

Eileen Hull meets PaperArtsy

Another long overdue post of our wonderful weekend at Belmont House in Unst back at the end of September where we used Eileen Hull's journal dies together with PaperArtsy Infusions and Stamps. What a fabulous combination. Details of the journal will follow in another post but here's a sneak peek!

This is the second year a group of us have visited Belmont House for the weekend adapting the wonderful house to our needs and enjoying the most wonderful food cooked by these lovely ladies, and of course a wonderful time creating and enjoying each other's company.

Every inch of the hall and porch are used for stamping, die cutting and punching.

Friday night was spent giving our journal covers a coat of Gesso and making coffee and tea stained papers. Plus the odd glass of wine or two ....

We manage to cram in as many tables as possible so we all have a working space. 

Most of Saturday was spent working on our covers - we were making the large Journal, the Passport book AND the needlework book! These lovely ladies love a challenge!

All the messy work was done in the kitchen ......

Demonstrating PaperArtsy Infusions (bit of a bad hair day for me!) 

After a little hesitation and apprehension everyone loved them.

Excellent use of the windows for drying ribbons!

We had an excellent meal out at the Saxaford Resort in Haroldswick - we all stopped working literally 15 minutes before we were due to leave!

And fabulous lunches of homemade soup and home bakes and this AMAZING roast on Sunday evening made by Netta and Thelma. It was delicious.

So ..... here's to next year. We've already booked Belmont House. Now to think what to make!

Jennie x


Paloma - the Dove of Peace

I have been very lucky to be the "keeper" of Paloma these last few weeks. 

Paloma is a dove of peace created by Lys in France and began her travels in late 2015 visiting crafty people all around the world sharing her hope of peace. Lys started Paloma's journey on her blog after the attack on Paris in 2015. You can find out more about Paloma on Lys blog ImpressionScrap

This is a long overdue blog post as I unfortunately lost all my photographs of her wonderful weekend in the northernmost UK island of Unst. But thankfully I found them the other day on a stick which had fallen behind the computer, so I can now share them with you.

Within a couple of days of receiving my lovely package I was teaching a workshop at Belmont House in Unst with nine friends and Paloma came too. So here are some photographs of her little trip:

Paloma started her journey to Unst on two ferries, this is the second one.

Despite the blue skies of our arrival day, the weather then became AWFUL so I could only take photographs of her inside. 

Here enjoying the views from the back of the house ....

.... and also out the front windows too.

.... alighting on ledges and chairs .......

... and making a contribution in the Belmont House 
Visitors Book ...

... as well as enjoying some sumptuous meals with friends!

And so she is now winging her way across the Atlantic to her next exciting adventure in America.  Thank you Lys for letting me be a part of her journey of peace.

Jennie x

PS If you would like to host Paloma then please let me know so I can add you to the list (so far she has been in France, England, Scotland, Canada, America and Australia).

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Pearly Altered Bottle

I am sharing another post today here at Live the Dream which was featured on the PaperArtsy blog for the pearlescent challenge, but which I wanted to have here on the blog for my own records. So forgive me for a bit of a "cut and paste" and please do not feel obliged to comment!

I would say that this altered bottle did not go initially to plan (or rather the design that was in my head) but as you will see a stroke of luck with the water bottle sorted things out and now I am very pleased with it!

I started with a small Prosecco bottle .... it really is worth looking in the small wine bottles section of your local supermarket as there are some wonderful shapes of bottles, but which are not too large to alter. For the sake of my art, I did drink the contents of two bottles so I had a spare .......... 

The bottle got a couple of coats of gesso then a coat of crackle paste which I applied with a paintbrush. I didn't want anything too thick. I loved all the little marks on the bottle and had intended to do some layering with texture paste, but in the end let the original textures on the bottle provide the interest.

Now this is where it all started going a bit wrong! or rather not to plan! I wanted a light coat of Infusions to blend into the crackle on the bottle and had thought that rolling it in the colour would work but ....... the shape of the bottle precluded that. I tried painting the colour on and it was too dark (I am using Violet Storms which are not light at the best of times!) Finally I stood the bottle on some kitchen towel and gave everything a spritz of water  (as I thought I would start all over again) and hey presto the water and Infusions dripped beautifully. I wanted to keep this wonderful colour so zapped it with the heat gun, hoping that the bottle wouldn't crack!  I then had the great idea that I would spritz the bottle with a Pearlescent spray ..... I nearly lost all the wonderful colour, but it did work and the bottle has a lovely sheen to it, although the photographs don't really show that.

Now I am sure we all have loads of these - I have an enormous amount bought for a workshop which was then cancelled. I am always looking for ways of using them up and I love altering them with a bit of paint.

I find the easiest thing is to paint them while they are still on the plastic sheeting. They first got a coat of Chalk and then a little PaperArtsy Satin Glaze.

You wouldn't recognise them as the same embellishment.

I then started decorating the bottle and this went fairly fast as I chose various different elements. The lovely sisters were stamped onto tissue and added over the crackled/infused bottle. I love the way some of the Violet Infusions shows through. 

I felt I needed a sentiment and so I took a few words from one of Alison Bombers wonderful sentiments and stamped on some old text paper to keep the vintage feel.

And then the to the top of the bottle. I love using just one colour of Infusions and so I dyed some American seam binding ribbon with the Violet Storms Infusions. If you want a lighter colour you need to add loads of water, but you can make it still lighter by wrapping it in a piece of kitchen towel and squeezing the water out before drying. I love this dusky violet!

When I first saw the cameo stamp I knew I had to find my shrink plastic! I have always used the Translucent Shrink Plastic as it seems less brittle. A little gold around the edges just finished it off.

Then I found the cap of the bottle which I had completely forgotten about! It looked a bit bland with just the paint so I gave it another coat of the Chalk mixed with Satin Glaze and it really has a lovely pearly finish. A pearl from an old necklace made a lovely top. 

There is also a piece of pearl necklace (from an old necklace I found in my mother in law's jewellery box) around the top of the bottle underneath the ribbon. 

So here is my "pearly" altered bottle .... pearls and pearlescent sprays and of course the odd pearl button.

I hope you are having a great day and the weather is kinder than here - wet and windy AGAIN ! but at least it means I can shut myself in the craft room.

Jennie x