Friday, August 16, 2019


Hello friends!
There have been a lot of questions lately from the Tim Holtz Addicts Facebook group about using Distress Crayons with ephemera.  To be honest, all one needs to do is Google Distress Crayons or search Pinterest to find the information but since you're here anyway....this simple Vignette Tray Project has step-outs using Distress Crayons over ephemera so it might be a good visual.  Remember, as long as you start with a SLICK SURFACE it works perfectly every single time.  If you don't have a slick surface...then just add a coat of Collage Medium to create one.

Paint the outside of the small Vignette Tray with black paint.
Line the tray with paper.  I used paper from the Memoranda Paper Stash.
I also added Design Tape around the lip edge of the tray.
You might need to add a touch of Collage Medium on the corners where the Design Tape criss-crosses (it likes to stick to things, not itself).
Once adhered, I sanded it lightly and inked the edge.

I wanted to create a collage background so I cut a piece of chipboard as a foundation.  I also sanded a few pieces of Ephemera to use in the collage.
Lay them out in a pleasing pattern and adhere with Collage Medium.  Add a layer of CM over the top and let dry.
Once dry, scribble Walnut Stain Distress Crayon (my favorite brown) over the surface.
Rub with a damp fingertip.

Use a wet wipe to pounce lightly over the surface to mottle the rubbed surface.  If you wipe too much off you can easily add more.  The pouncing should make the surface more realistic looking (compare with the picture above).
NOTE: Remember, that wet wipes come in a variety of "wetness" (is that a real word?).  If you pull a wet wipe from the package and water drips off the's too darn wet.  Of course wet wipes should be wet, but you shouldn't be able to ring water from them.  Once a year I buy the giant box of individual packs from Costco (Kirkland brand).  They are the perfect "wetness" (there's that word again) and I never run out.  Just saying.
I love where the crayon has built up around the edge of the red piece of ephemera.
This is the finished result of the pouncing.  Very different looking than when the crayon was just rubbed on.
Adhere ephemera piece to a Vinette Panel for stability.  Set aside.
I colored the boys from the current Paper Doll pack using Distress Crayon and a Waterbrush (perfect for getting in the small detail areas).  I cut masks for the boys using the new Masquerade die.
One thing that is a must do is to add a Sizzix Adhesive Sheet to the cardstock BEFORE cutting.  That means you only have to peel off the protective sheet on the back and stick it on any Paper Doll. The  Adhesive Sheets come in 6 x 6" sheets or 2 1/2 x 4 1/4" (sized for the Sidekick).  I like to use the whole sheet on a piece of cardstock, so when I need to cut something small (like a couple masks) I just grab a piece that is already prepped and cut away.

The Masquerade mini masks fit all the sizes of Paper Dolls...even dogs!
To create the base, I used three 4" pieces of Etcetera Trim (pinked).  I glued them together and painted them with Gesso.
Once the Gesso was dry I added Opaque Crackle Texture Paste and let that dry.
Scribble with a Distress Crayon.
I used a damp paintbrush to move the crayon around and get it into the cracks.
Hardware Heads were added to each end (love these things).
Then I glued the ephemera portion into the small Vignette Tray.
I added foam square to the back of the trim to raise it up from the tray.
Just like that it's in!
I had an old paintbrush I picked up at some flea market and decided to wrap heavy wire around the neck.  I left the raw ends of the wire facing down so that when I placed the brush over the ephemera it would look like the wire went right through the surface.
To create the illusion, I placed the paintbrush over the background.  I used a pen to mark the spot where the wire will appear to go into the board.  Then used an awl and hammer to make the holes (remember there is a wood Vignette Panel under the ephemera).
I added Foam Squares to the back of the paint brush to secure to the ephemera and raise it up (the heavy wire made too much of a bump on the back to use Collage Medium as an adhesive).
You can also see where I added a very small amount of Collage Medium where the wire is stuck into the hole I made with the awl (it will dry clear). 

You can see that the elbow of the boy sits up again the paintbrush to appear as if he is leaning on it. 
 I did add Foam Squares to the back of the boys so they are raised up off the surface.
And one last thing...a Clippings Sticker...probably my most used product of the entire line.  Seems like these little word stickers fit with every project I make.

Well I hope you like some of the ideas in todays post from using Distress Crayons to color to Adhesive Sheets for small die cuts to creating illusions in art!  All good things!
Now carry on,

Monday, July 1, 2019

Merry Christmas Vignette Tray

Hi friends!
If you have come here from Tim's Facebook Live, welcome!  I am going to show you how I created the Merry Christmas Vignette Tray with the Festive Repeat background which really makes this piece stand out.
I used a small Vignette Tray as my foundation.  You can see that there is an added wood base to the tray.  My husband cut that piece for me...super simple just one cut needed.
For the inside:
1.  Cut cardstock to fit the back of the tray (approximately 4 3/8" x 8 5/8").
2.  Choose a pattern from the Festive Repeat Thinlit to use as the background.  Since the die has to be used horizontal in this case, I choose the "plaid lines" for my pattern since it does not read specifically horizontal or vertical like the diamonds.
When you look any of Tim's "repeat" dies, one side is flat with no cutting blades.  Can you see the flat side on the right?
3.  Line up the die on one end of the cardstock. The side that has NO blade is on the left (notice there are no punch holes in the metal die on that end?)
4.  Run through your die cut machine.  I use a Vagabond 2 and a chrome plate with all my Thinlit dies.  
5.  Once you remove the die, pop out all the pieces with a Die Pick.  Match up the last holes on the right to the flat part of the die.  
This is what it looks like after three cut passes.  I still have two more to go till I get to the end.  All in all it took me about 10-15 minutes to do the entire piece and that was just because I had to stop to pop out all the little squares between passes.  Not too bad for a great background!
I painted my Vignette Tray black and added silver Metallic cardstock to the back.  It may look like gray cardstock here but in real life it is has a shine to it!  Now it's time to add the Festive Repeat to the background of the tray.  I used Collage Medium only around the edge of the red paper.
I created an ornament for the sentiment using a set of Sizzix nested circles.  I believe my set is retired but there are many companies that sell circle dies.  My largest circle is 3 3/8" (patterned paper) and the black circle is 2 7/8".  I also cut a piece of chipboard for largest circle to add stability.
The sentiment is one of my favorite dies from the release called Christmas Ribbon.  It's amazingly thin and cuts like a dream.  For the sentiment, I added a Deco Sheet to cardstock.  Then I added a Sizzix Adhesive Sheet to the cardstock.  Once I cut and remove the sentiment from the die, I can easily peel off the outside layer and stick the words to whatever I wish.  No extra glue needed.

I also created a small faux metal top for the bulb using chipboard and Metal Foil Tape.  I scored it with a bone folder to make the lines, then dripped Smolder Pearls Alcohol Ink over the top.  You will need to set it aside to dry for 10-15 mins since you are dripping the ink rather than pouncing it on with a tool.
To hang the Christmas Bulb, I inserted a Screw Eye from the Vignette Hardware pack to the top of the tray.  I find that it's best to start the hole with an awl or a push pin and then screw in the screw eye.
The metallic braid is vintage from Tinsel Trading in Berkley, CA.  I ran it through the Screw Eye, threaded it through a hole I punched in the bulb cap and tied a bow.  There are foam squares on the back of the bulb to keep it in position.

For the greenery, I cut a 5 x 6" piece of Distress Heavystock and colored it with layers of original Distress Ink in Peeled Paint and Forrest Moss, then sprayed a few colors of Distress Oxide over the top.
Using the colored Heavystock, I cut one Seasonal Scroll.  I also cut the three berries multiple times using Distress Watercolor paper so I could watercolor them later.
Additionally, I cut four pieces of pine using the Large Funky Festive: two in a medium green and  two in forest green. 
I used one of my favorite tools, the Distress Splatter Brush, and Picket Fence Distress Paint to splatter over the pine pieces.
A Detailer Water Brush was used to watercolor each berry with a combination of Festive Berries and Candied Apple.
Using 3D foam squares, I positioned the Festive Scroll into the tray.  Then I clipped each piece of pine in half to fill in around the scroll.  Some of the pine lies under the Festive Scroll and some lies on top of it to give dimension.
It might be hard to tell but some berries are mounted with 3D foam squares and some are glued directly to the Festive Repeat.
 I added an idea-ology jingle bell to the vintage braid.
 I had a small piece of pine left over so I added it to the bottom of the bulb.

Hope you like the Christmas Vignette Tray.  I love how the Seasonal Scroll and the pine worked over the Festive Repeat background.   The layers and colors of greens really added some great dimension to this piece, something that I am sure I will be repeating throughout the season!

If you missed Tim Facebook Live 
there are two videos to choose from,
Click on either link to take you to Tim's blog for fabulous pictures of all the projects and links to the designers that will be sharing tutorials over the next few months.

now carry on,