Thursday, September 27, 2007
I have been back at making name writing pins again. I need to get inspired with my stamping but dread the reorganization that my office is undergoing. Slow and steady wins the race I guess! Furniture is being moved and the closet is getting revamped. Why don't those office fairies come in at night and go poof? LOL Then I would have a wonderful creative space again!
The pin at the top is made with 20 gauge round sterling silver wire. It is much easier to work with than the square wire as with the name Victoria. However, the square wire looks so good and makes a sturdier product so it is worthwhile to work that persnickety stuff. The s curve also makes the pin sturdier because it stiffens things up once it is attached to the spring of the pin. It is not a separate piece of wire but worked with one continuous piece of wire beginning with the V with several inches left on the beginning end. This extra wire is then worked into the pin and spring. The catch is worked in behind the A and then the s curve works out from there and attaches back to the spring behind the V. The square wire catches more light and looks fancier. In the end it is my favorite even though it takes longer to form a name with it. The wire tends to want to turn and it takes a bit of effort to keep it squared up! I can work a name with round wire in forty minutes or less and the square takes an hour. The price you pay for shine and glitz I suppose! What do you think?
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
I thought these were hip and cool but my daughter tells me they are weird. Maybe she just doesn't want to admit there is creativity in these earrings. They were made with 22 gauge sterling silver wire and pink glass beads. Don't forget to use your jig to bend the wire frame and use your small pins . I used my round nose pliers to make the s hooks and headpins. What are you going to make?
Sunday, September 23, 2007
What scrapbooking item are you?
You are PAPER!You are an all natural basic person who likes to act as a foundation to others. You are willing to take a backseat in most of your relationships and let others take the spotlight, while you show your support and help them shine! Underneath it all, you are the one who makes it all happen. You are the focus and stability in any group, even if you are not the leader. Others look to you to set the pace and provide ideas for ways to get things done. But Paper Beware - sometimes you get a little edgy with the people who look to you for support and can give them some papercut remarks that can hurt their feelings. Remember to watch what you say, because you are best when leading by example.
Take this quiz!
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Well I always knew I did better when I kept my mouth shut! I guess this just proves it!
Saturday, September 22, 2007
I made this card several months ago from an Anna Griffin pattern. This one turned out well but I can think of other things that would have made it even better. Isn’t that the way it always is? You make improvements as you go along and the last one is always better than the first? Some time I hope to work with this basic design and improve upon it. I want to give it more of a wow factor. The color combinations could be improved upon and other embellishments used to add even more interest.
The floral paper is by Anna Griffin and the stock number is AG012. The Pink embossed flourish paper is from The Vintage Paper Collection from nicolecrafts.com The burgundy strip is SU! Bravo Burgundy card stock and the picot ribbon is by Offray. The card itself was stamped on a speckled gray card stock that has been in my stash for years and then I just stippled the edge with the burgundy ink. This piece measures 3 ¼ inches by 4 ½ inches. I can see this done with the SU! new round tab punch at the top or maybe incorporating the designer label. The possibilities are just about endless so I may design a series of cards with this basic design and see if they get better as I go! I almost forgot to mention how well this card would work for Valentine’s Day! Doesn’t it just scream nostalgia? Happy stamping and please let me know that you stopped by. Don’t forget the send a link if you use this as a springboard or CASE this card.
Thursday, September 20, 2007
The necklace was strung with two wires and the pendant portion was made using two fine head pins and attaching to the center of the necklace portion. The bicone beads are Swarovski as well as the blue crystal in the square beads. I also used quite a few sterling Bali beads too.
Have you figured out yet that I really like Bali beads? It's true they are an old stand by. I also made a matching bracelet. Enjoy and leave a comment! If you have a question, please ask. More name writing coming soon at the same bat time on the same bat channel! Who remembers this TV show?
Monday, September 17, 2007
Well, it's time for a cropping post today. I am finally getting caught up on making some cards. Soon I'll be stamping on anything but a card and altered items! It will be a lot of fun to work in other mediums for a change. All of you are probably tired of looking at cards too!
Last week I created this card for the Virtual Stamp Night Challenge at Splitcoast and I am finally getting around to uploading a photo of it. Some of you are die hard Stampin' Up people and I applaud that. I had many supplies from different companies before I became a demonstrator so I am using up what I have before I buy all new supplies. You may substitute Stampin' Up! or just use this blog for inspiration. I am trying to get cards made for the card ministry at my church.
I hope you like it. If you do, please let me know! If you make a card using an idea from this one, send the link so we can have a look! Here is how this one is made.
Textured Vanilla card stock
White and vanilla card stock
SU! Mellow Moss Card Stock
SU! French Script Background Stamp
SU! Heartfelt Thanks Stamp Set
SU! Elegant Inspirations Stamp Set
SU! Mellow Moss Classic Ink
Sugarloaf Fresh Eggplant Stamp Pad
Brilliance Victorian Violet Stamp Pad
Brilliance Pearlescent Ivy Stamp Pad
Mellow Moss Classic Stamp Pad
Watermark Stamp Pad
Cuttle Bug Textile Embossing Folder
Gold Embossing Powder
Foam plate or palette
1. I cut some heavy duty textured 8 1/2 x 11 inch card stock in half at 5 1/2 inches. I have had this card stock (CS) for a while and do not know who the manufacturer happens to be.
2. Fold the card in half using a bone folder. I also like to use the top edge of my paper cutter as a guide to help keep the paper straight.
3. Open the card and cut off 1 inch of the front right hand side of the card.
4.Stamp the front with the French Script stamp in Mellow Moss.
5. Run 1/4 sheet of white CS through the Cuttle Bug with the Textile Embossing Folder. I do not have a Cuttle Bug yet so I can't show you this step. If you need more information about this tool, check out Craft Critique. Some very kind ladies send these to me. If you do not have access to a Cuttle Bug, you could emboss by hand the old fashion way or buy embossed CS or paper.
6. Rub Mellow Moss Ink pad over the top of the embossed CS. Just ink the raised portion.
7. Squirt a few drops of Mellow Moss ink on a plate and dilute with water. I used about one part ink to 3 or 4 parts water.
8. Dampen sponge and then sponge diluted ink onto embossed CS and let dry or dry with the heat gun.
9. Stamp Heartfelt Thanks Flower on vanilla CS using Eggplant on the flower and Mellow Moss on the stem.
10. Cut the flowers into 2 1/4 x 3 1/2 inch pieces.
A bit of tape would be helpful to mask while inking the stamp.
11. Ink up Flower Outline with Victorian Violet and leaves with Pearlescent Ivy.
12. Distress the edges and Stipple around the edge of the flower in Mellow Moss using a stencil brush. Don't forget to ink the edge of the card stock too!
13. Cut a piece of Mellow Moss CS to 2 3/4 x 4 1/4 inches and glue to the back of the flower.
14. Use the swirl from the Elegant Inspirations set and the watermark ink to stamp the corners of the flower.
15.Heat emboss with gold embossing powder.
16. Ink the raised portion of the embossed paper with watermark ink and emboss with gold embossing powder.
If too much powder sticks in the crevices, then use a paint brush to clean off the powder before heating. You want this to look a bit aged.
17. Cut embossed paper into one inch strips and glue a strip down to the right edge of the back flap. Trim if needed. The front flap of the card should meet the left edge of the embossed paper which you glued to the bottom flap of the card.
18. Glue flower to the center of the front flap. I chose to use gold embossing powder for the sentiment on the inside of the card and it looks great!
19. This last photo shows an alternate way to finish the flower. I stamped an additional flower, cut it out and curled up the edges.
20. Next I added some wonderful lavender ultra fine glitter to the center of the flower.
Happy Stamping and don't forget to tell me what you think and link your card here!
Saturday, September 15, 2007
The clear and silver piece is the first beaded watch that I put together several years ago. It is still my favorite and goes with any type of clothing. The Bali beads make this piece interesting and give a lot of texture to the piece. It also gives an antique look to the piece and I love antiques! You may notice that when I make a double stranded piece that I like to use square beads to tie the two strands together. Using just one square bead on each side worked quite nicely. Proper placement made all the difference.
The blue and white watch is an old standby for jeans when I want a little more color. Notice the square beads, spacers and facets of the blue beads give the texture and contrast needed to make this piece interesting. The watch face is a bit large and very round. An oval or oblong face would have been the best choice in my opinion. Maybe I just get tired of looking at the same old round shape in watch faces! I hope this gives you some ideas to make your own designer watches. It is fun to have so many to mix and match with clothing. Especially since the cost is reasonable if you make them yourself! Happy beading and let me know that you have stopped by the blog today.
Friday, September 14, 2007
Okay, okay! I know I have to stop taking photos at night. The reflection with the flash is too much to handle but I just couldn't wait to show off my latest pin. It is so easy to make! Can't you just see this on a denim jacket or a blazer? The beads are sterling silver, royal blue glass, navy blue glass and topaz blue glass. The navy blue beads look black in this photo. I will see about getting a better photo later after I make several different colors and I'll post those so that you may have a better appreciation of this piece.
The Movement of this piece is wonderful! The beads sparkle and catch the light. The added bonus is the sound of the beads. It was a lot of fun to make and just as much fun to wear. It is made from a single length of round 20 gauge half hard sterling silver wire on a wire jig. Use a medium large peg at the center and begin bending the piece from the center and work your way out. Be sure to leave one side about 3 1/2 inches longer than the other to form the spring and pin with. Once it is taken off of the jig you will want to form the spring by making several circles. Use your flush cutters and snip the end to a point and sharpen to a clean point. (I will be showing other photos soon that show how this is done.) I twisted the center loop one time to add a bit of strength and interest before I added the beads. You will also want to form your hook on the opposite side to finish the body of the pin. Note that this would also be pretty done with twisted square wire for a filigree look. I picked some up today and can't wait to play! Harden the wire with a hammer and then polish or tumble polish to harden and polish in one step. Next it is time to have fun mixing and matching the beads. Once you have a pleasing pattern then attach beads and have fun wearing!
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
This card was fun to make and it reminds me of the mountains, cider, fried apple pies and cool weather for apple picking. Here is how it was made.
1. Stamp apple bucket from the Stampin' Up! (SU!) Give Thanks set with black Stazon ink. You may use any neutral paper or watercolor paper.
2. Cut Real Red card stock (CS) to 4 x5 1/4 inches.
3. Cut Handsome Hunter CS 1 1/2 x 5 1/2 inches and stamp with the SU! Print Pattern background stamp using watermark ink. I find the easiest way to do this is by turning the stamp rubber side up and ink the bottom 2 1/2 rows of the stamp. Lay the paper on the stamp and rub evenly.
4. Lay green strip against red paper and trim with a craft knife to exact size. Add the brass embellishment to this strip with metallic gold ribbon. I like to use Crystal Effects to glue down the ribbon.
5. Color the apple bucket with water color crayons/watercolor pencils and blend with a brush or Aqua Painter. See tutorial if needed. I used a Basic Gray, Going Gray and white crayon with a green red, yellow and brown pencil. The apples were shaded by coloring yellow on the top and red at the bottom. Blend the two colors together working from yellow to red.
6. Use a thin layer of Crystal Effects on the apples for shine and let dry. This picks up the shine from the ribbon, embellishment and gold embossing.
7. Cut the apple buckets into 2 1/2 x 3 inch rectangles.
8. Take black paper or CS and cut into rectangles 1/2 inch larger than the apple buckets.
9. Use the SU! wrought iron corner punch on each corner of the black rectangle and insert the apple buckets.
10. Dry fit the pieces together and take watermark ink and stamp the sentiment (Thinking of You from SU! Peace and Comfort set). Heat emboss with black embossing powder.
11. Stamp the squiggle from the Elegant Inspirations set with watermark ink and heat emboss with gold powder.
12. Put all of the pieces together with adhesive and attach to the front of white or vanilla CS.
The Brass embellishment was made with 21 gauge square half hard wire which was twisted with a pin vise or drill and then wrapped around the medium sized pins of a wire jig. See the Wire Jig post for more information.
Shall we begin? You may use a soft bristled brush, aqua painter or blender pen for this technique. I prefer a brush or the Aqua Painter(water filled brush) and since I do this technique on the go I usually use the painter. There are other painters similar to these on the market but I do not like them. The bristles are stiffer and it is easy to raise the color off of the paper. The bristles scrub instead of blend color.
I have heard several people complain about the Aqua Painter leaving too much water on the paper and that it drips. I think this is due to squeezing the painter too hard. You want the painter bristles to be damp but not wet. Use a paper towel to blot the excess water from the painter before putting it to paper and don't squeeze it very often. If you use a brush, the same thing applies. It is quite different from true watercoloring. You don't wet the paper first and then add the color. If this sounds too complicated then give the blender pen a try. Some of you might prefer it.
Now let's talk about color. Watercolor paints, dye based ink, watercolor pencils and watercolor crayons are all choices that may be mixed and matched if you desire. You may use dye based ink pads or ink refills. If this is your choice then consider the Stampin' Up! pad. It works great for this technique because you can give the pad a squeeze and then flip the lid for a perfect palette. Watercolor pencils are easy to use too. Just put some color down and begin blending. I use them later, on this project. The crayons are similar to a child's crayon only you can blend the color with water.
I began this project with a crayon. If you look close, you may see how much it looks like coloring from a crayon. I left blank space where clouds might be and then used my Aqua painter to blend. I began on one side at the top and worked my way down and across. I also began with the background first. painting the things that are farthest away first and working your way forward helps layer and create depth in your work. (Remember that you may click on an image to enlarge it.) Notice that I just use the tip of the Aqua Painter to do the blending. That is really all you need. If you push too hard you could move too much of the color. If this happens, let the paper dry and touch things up.
Next I used a green watercolor pencil. The color of the pencils is more intense so I tend to only color part of the grass and blend the rest. I think the grass is more intense in the front and gets lighter as it fades in the distance. Does this make sense? I trace the stems and grass also. Next I used a purple pencil on the flowers and quickly blended.
Another thing to consider is the light source in the picture. Where is the sun shining? I decided it was coming from the top right corner so I shaded accordingly. Notice the folds in the dress are darker as well as the underside of the dress. The front of the dress is lighter than the back also. The sun washes out the color on the front of the dress. Notice the shading on the hat? It is several colors of yellow and straw added to the paper and then I blended all of the colors. Working first in the lightest area and working into the darkest.I did not color every centimeter of the dress. Leave some space blank for shading and blending.
The flesh tone is a Blush Blossom crayon from Stampin' Up! It is the only flesh tone that I have and it worked quite nicely. Granted and artist would be able to create more realism than I did here but this works fine for a card and any crafter can get the hang of this method. One thing I have not mentioned yet is to wipe the painter on a paper towel between the use of different colors. This cleans the color out of the bristles. Don't worry about the bristles being stained. You can still blend color without worry that this will ruin your project. It will be just fine. A completed card with this image may be found in an earlier post titled Summer By the Sea.
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
If this is something you are interested in learning, then surf on over to wire-sculpture.com and check it out. If you need very specific instructions to create each name then don't make the investment. However, if you are creative and can figure things out with general guidance then this might be just the course for you. I will be sharing pieces with you in the near future and you can decide if it is something that you're interested in learning. Most of all remember to practice, practice, practice!
This is a piece that I created for a nurse/friend of mine as a thank you and get well. It was formed with #20 half hard round sterling silver. The pin, name and catch were formed from a single length of wire. The heart charm was created separately and then added to the piece. I apologize for the poor quality of the photo. It was taken at night and reflections were a problem. Then it was packed up to be given away so it is the only halfway decent photo that I have. Stay tuned for even more decorative pieces. It is amazing at the number of different pieces that can be created. Enjoy!
Monday, September 10, 2007
Woo hoo! My counter has clicked over 1,000 this past weekend. You know what that means don't you? It is officially blog candy time!
To win the blog candy you must:
1. Leave a comment on this post and tell me what your favorite thing is about this blog, other than I am giving something away.
2. Tell me which pair of these sterling silver earrings is your favorite. Choose green, blue, silver or garnet.
If you are the winner, you get to choose which pair of earrings in this photo that you would like to have and I will make a matching pendant to send along with the earrings.
I will draw a name on September 17th as the winner! Check back to see if you have won and make arrangements to receive your gift or leave your email address in your comment.
More info about how to construct these earrings can be found on the Wig Jig site.
Sunday, September 9, 2007
1. Cut a piece of 8 1/2 by 11 inch sheet of SU! Brilliant blue card stock in half at 5 1/2 inches. Take one of the halves and fold in half to make a 4 1/4 by 5 1/2 inch card. A bone folder works really well for this and I highly recommend using one if you fold paper on a regular basis. It will give you a crisper and more professional fold.
2. Clip the four corners with a corner punch and set aside.
3. Use a border punch and create a punched border on white paper and then trim. I used an Anna Griffin punch on this one.
4. Accordion pleat the border and then attach to the back of white card stock that has been stamped with a background stamp. I am not giving specific dimensions because that all changes depending on which border punch you use. Snail adhesive works well for this step. Cut the corners on a 45 degree angle.
5. Cut a piece of Brilliant Blue card stock 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch smaller than the stamped white card stock. Punch the corners of the blue card stock with a decorative corner punch.
6. Stamp the Anna Griffin oval car touche on white CS with brilliant blue ink.
&. Stamp a sentiment on vellum and cut out in an oval shape to fit in the car touche.
7. Stamp the background image and cut out some of the flowers and leaves to decorate the front of the oval. You may also choose to cut a blue oval that is slightly larger than the car touche.
8. Use a pop dot or stampin' dimensional to attach the oval to the blue rectangle.
Have fun making your own version if you are so inspired. Happy stamping!
Friday, September 7, 2007
I know that I have not written much on basket weaving thus far so I will try and remedy that problem very soon. It has been too hot in my weaving spot to get much accomplished. The reed dries out so quickly in the heat that it makes weaving a challenge!
I have been scouring web sites on this topic to try and bring you some fantastic material but instead I have picked up viruses on some of those sites so I can’t recommend them to you. Instead I have found a little tutorial on how to weave a small basket with round reed that you may be interested in looking at here.
If you have never woven a basket before and want to learn how, then take a class if one is ever offered in your area. Hands on, with a good instructor in the room is really the best way to get your feet wet! Make sure you start with a simple basket. You want your first experience to be pleasant and feel as though you have accomplished something. If you can’t find a class to attend than start with a good instructional book. The Basket Book is just one of those that I would recommend. There is a copy on eBay right now that is very inexpensive. Once you understand the basics than you can branch out and buy individual patterns or booklets and should be able to tackle just about anything!
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
Here is another bit of sparkle and bling jewelry! It looks great with dress clothes and with jeans in summer or winter. I like to wear pieces like this with my snow man and snow flake tops in winter yet these are also reminiscent of the beach too! Both of these pieces were strung using stainless steel bead wire. The components are sterling silver beads, sterling spacers, glass druk beads and Swarovski crystal bi cone beads. The square silver and glass components are not sterling but I have worn this type of bead for several years and they still look great. The pieces were finished off with silver crimp beads.
The Pendants work up quickly and make great gifts. They also have silver spacer beads in them where the wire goes from two separate beads into one bead. Take this same piece and attach it to a pair of leaver back earrings for a complete matching set. The other photo shows a second pendant made just a little bit differently from the blue pendant. Use your imagination and see what you can come up with! Happy beading!
Saturday, September 1, 2007
Isn't this a wonderful little card for fall? Thanks to the ladies over at Splitcoast Wish RAK, I had enough stamped images to make up about ten of these cards. This is how it goes together.
1. Cut an 8 1/2 x 11 inch piece of vanilla card stock down the middle at 4 1/4 inches and fold in half.
2. Cut a piece of Always Artichoke card stock about a 1/4 inch smaller than the card front.
3. Cut a piece of Cranberry Crisp or Bravo Burgundy card stock into one inch strips and trim both sides with scallop decorative scissors then use the paper-piercing template from the Mat Pack to pierce both edges of this strip.
4. Cut 1 3/4 x 2 1/2 inch pieces of cranberry card stock to back the phrase.
5. Stamp the pumpkin and phrase from the Stampin' Up! Give Thanks stamp set using black Stazon ink and vanilla card stock.
6. Use the watercolor technique with the More Mustard, Pumpkin Pie, and Really Rust crayons from the Stampin' Up! Earth elements watercolor crayon set to color the pumpkin. Use the Garden Green and Creamy Caramel crayons to color the stem and leaves.
7. Use a 2 inch punch to cut out the pumkin. Don't forget to turn the punch upside down and place the paper face up so that you can see the image that you are punching.
8. Edge the circle in Mellow Moss ink or use one of the green crayons from the Earth Elements set. Load the brush with water and apply it to the crayon to pick up the color.
9. Cut the phrase out making it slightly smaller than the Cranberry Crisp pieces you cut out in step number four. You may also use a corner rounder punch on the corners of these pieces if you like. It looks good with the scallops and circle. Glue these pieces down to the corner of the Always Artichoke.
10. Glue linen thread to the strip. I like to use a glue stick for this because the thread stays in place well. Glue the strip to the card front.
11. Tie a bow with the linen and attach with a tiny drop of Crystal Effects.
12. Place a stamping dimensional or excess rubber stamp foam to the pumpkin and attach to the one inch strip.
13. Punch out maple leaves with a punch. I don't know the manufacturer on this one. Use any scraps that remind you of fall. I used Handsome Hunter, Only Orange, Barely Banana, Gable Green and Bravo Burgundy. Glue leaves randomly to the Always Artichoke.
14. Glue Always Artichoke down to the card front and enjoy!