Friday, July 24, 2020

A Story for Girls Tag Book

Hello friends,

I am working on a kit for the fall using Dylusions Mixed Media 12" Journaling Tags.  I needed the lower half of each tag, which left me with about 1 million "tops" (of course I saved every single one "just in case I need it").  I kept walking by the pile in my craft room and I couldn't take it anymore, I had to make something with them.  My idea was to create a little book, so that is todays tutorial: building the book.  Because if you can make one this size, you can make ten more other sizes...really limitless.  

I gathered 6 tag tops (mine are cut 3 3/4" wide) and lightly sprayed each piece with Speckled Egg and Antique Linen Distress Stay Spray.  I blotted after spraying to remove parts of the speckled finish (not a fan of speckles).  I dried them with the Heat It Tool then repeated on the other side.
I chose this large stamp from the Lady Rose set and added it to a Grid Block.
I sprayed three colors of Distress Stain onto the Glass Media Mat - Shabby Shutters, Scattered Straw and Speckled Egg. Then pressed the stamp right into the stain.  
Picking up the stamp you can see that it's wet but there should not be liquid dripping off...that is too much stain.  If you are unsure, test the stamp on a scrap piece of paper so you know how much liquid to use.
I stamped each tag top one at a time to get this watercolor look.  Some are strong impressions and some are light.  It will not matter how the impression looks in the final book - so unique is good!  
Once one side was dry, I turned the cards over and stamped the other side.
My favorite part are the places I stamped the tiny leaves that are on the end of the stamp. I inked only this area of the stamp to add this detail on each card.
I wanted to add another stamped image - a polka dot.  This time only Speckled Egg Spray Stain was used and no Grid block (again, test on scrap piece of paper first).
Roll the stamp onto a portion of the tag top.
The stamp looks pretty uniform at first.
Before the spray dries, use two fingers to press a paper towel in a few spots.
You can see that pressing paper towel into the wet stain make the polka dots look more organic rather than just stamped on.
Randomly stamp all the cards (front and back) with the polka dots.
To connect the cards I cut six strips of Dina's Media Tape and stamped Speckled Egg Distress Ink and Bundled Sage.

I matched up cards and taped them together with the Media Tape. Be sure to leave about 1/16" between the two cards so they will fold easily.  Note: there is tape on both sides of the card sets.
To make the pages into a book, I cut a small piece duck cloth the same length as the card.
Starting on the right side of the duck cloth, I sewed right down the middle between the two cards.
Fold the first set closed then line up the second set of cards with a bit of space between the first and second set.
Open the second set and sew down the center.  Repeat steps for the third set of pages.
I thought this might be helpful to see each set of tag tops individually stitched to the duck cloth (or spine).
I needed a cover so I cut a 12" tag to fit my leftover tag tops. Mine is 8" long - I just estimated how long it should be by wrapping the paper around the 6 tag tops.  I sprayed the paper on both sides exactly the same way as the tag tops.
To combine the two pieces, I simply glued the duck cloth to the cover with Collage Medium.,
So that is how I built the book.  Super easy to do if you have a sewing machine handy.  Like I said at the beginning, you can make any size or shape of book to suit your needs.

As I move on to the inside of the book.  You will find that anything goes, vintage paper mixed with idea-ology Found Relatives and Photobooth.  The one constant is flowers.  Some have been trimmed and some chopped up to create a new idea.  Flower crowns are fussy-cut individual flowers made to look like they belong together.  I will try and note bits of information throughout, but since I chose a very limited amount of materials to work with, it's not hard to figure out what I did.  I find this freeing (limiting my choices) because it forces me to work with what is "at arms reach" as my friend Deb Crouse taught me way back in our 7gypsies days.  I love a good challenge!

This is what I used on the inside
4 Photobooth
4 Found Relatives (cut out)
Field Notes Ephemera pack
Classic Stickers
Clippings Stickers
paper from a vintage Reader book
Tiny Toadstools stamp set - text stamp 
Field Notes stamp set - small numbers
Archival Ink: Black Soot
vintage lace
6 pieces of ribbon
ps) if you know me, you already know all the images were colored with Distress Crayons.

I used Collage Medium to add dyed cheesecloth over the spine portion of the book.

Here are all the Found Relatives and flowers I used on each.  You might notice the girl on the bottom left card. The hat on the lady was too good to pass up, so I added it to the girls head on the front cover.
I used 4 of these Photobooth.  I tried to arrange them so you can see the flowers used.  The girl at the top (with the star background) and the lady on the middle right share the same group of flowers.  When you see each of their respective pages you will be able to tell which flowers I used where. 

Detail shots of each collage
Just random ribbon bits from my stash.
The 365 stamp on the Classic Sicker is from Field Notes Stamp set.  I also tried to add stitching to each page but this is totally optional.
A magic carpet of flowers!  I thought she needed striped tights so I painted them on.
The blue halo around the pink Classic Sticker is done with a water brush at the very end.  More water than's just loosely washed around the image to create a drop shadow.
I love how the text stamp from the Toadstools set 'pops' against the neutral background by stamping with Black Soot Archival ink.
Don't be afraid to use "chopped off" people!
Added lace at the top with Collage Medium.
In the Found Relative photo she is holding a teddy bear.  I cut it out and replaced with clipped flowers.
I hope you have enjoyed the book. I sure enjoyed making it. I love the fussy cutting, figuring out what flowers to use where. I also loved the easy stamping technique that leaves so much room for error that no one needs a do-over. We could all use a little more of that in our life, right?

thanks everyone...
now carry on,

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

3D Poinsettia Christmas Card

Hello Friends!
I have had so many emails and DM about the Poinsettia card I created for the Sizzix Chapter 3 release that I thought I better write the tutorial for all those who want to know.  So lets get started!

I gathered some supplies - it does not matter the color of the stamp pad or even the stamp that you use.  These choices are all up to the maker and what suits them.  What I do think is good for this technique is the Distress Watercolor paper.  The thickness of the paper helps is hold up under the multiple passes through the Vagabond Machine (or Bigshot).  The 3D folder is a bit longer than the precut cards so I decided to cut a 8 x 11" sheet down to fit the folder. 
Open the 3D folder and pounce the Oxide Ink on to the side with the indentation of the poinsettia.
Lightly spritz both sides of the paper with water.
Place the paper into the folder smooth side down.
Run 3D folder through the Vagabond machine using only one plate, on top of the base plate.  Tim always suggests three passes to get the best impression.  When you open the folder you will have transferred the Oxide Ink to the paper and created a great impression with the folder.  Dry the card with a heat tool before stamping.
I chose the Fragment stamp set for the background because they are small, detailed and easy to get into the small spaces.  I did not use a block so only a portion of the image could be pressed down.   Archival Ink is a must because I want the images to be crisp and permanent. 
Next, I opened my bottle of Resist Spray and painted the flowers and stems.  I used a small paintbrush and just rinsed it out once I was done.  I was afraid it would take a long time to paint...I was wrong.  Under 4 minutes to complete it.  I found it best to work in a methodical fashion by starting at the top and working my way down the card front.  
The gold foil will only stick to the "painted" portion so be sure to tilt the card so you can detect the shine of the Resist Spray.  Set aside to dry for a few minutes while you prepare the Minc machine. 
I have a Minc Mini.  I usually set mine to 4 and wait for the light to turn green.  Once it's ready, I placed the red card with gold foil over the top into the carrier sheet. 
This is what it looked like when it came out.  
Open the carrier sheet and peel up the foil to reveal the flower.  You might notice the 3D flower is not so 3D anymore but don't worry we'll fix that! 
PLEASE NOTE: once the foil was added, I had a hard time photographing the card with true colors due to the shiny gold foil.  So please know this is all the same card, it just appears different on camera. 

Use Distress Ink to color any white paper that might be peeking through and add some depth to the red ink.  
Now back into the 3D folder! Spritz the backside of the paper with water and place back into the folder.  Slide the card around until you feel the card match up with the groves in the folder. Once it's sitting in the grooves it won't slide anymore.  
I ran three more passes and the 3D flower was back.
At this point I trimmed the edges of the card and then started the card backing.
I stamped a piece of Watercolor paper with the Linen stamp set and Black Soot Archival Ink for the background.
Stitching around the edge connects the two cards.  Then mounting on black makes it stand out.
I used the luxurious black Alcohol Ink Cardstock for the sentiment.  The Ranger gold embossing powder is stunning on this thick almost suede like paper.  
So here is the final card with some metallic string added.  The sentiment is from the Scenic Holiday stamp set.

So lets make the card again, but this time with Oxide Inks in the green family.  
Same process but of course the card looks totally different.
1. Ink
2. Three passes in the Vagabond (don't forget to spritz the paper before adding it to the folder)
3. Dry with heat tool and stamp (this time I used Hickory Smoke)
4.  Paint on the Resist Spray and let dry.
5.  Into the carrier sheet with the Minc Foil.  Run through the Minc.
And just like that, you have a beautiful card front.
6.  Add a sentiment (this one is from the Yuletide stamp set). 
I also added Sickles in Gold Dust to the center of each flower.  I love that bit of shine (I think I'll go back and add it to the red card too).  The Christmas Greetings sentiment is from the Yuletide stamp set.
I think I love the green card even more than the red!  Multiple colors of green Oxide Ink really creates such depth of color.  
That Minc foil is just amazing.

I know someone will ask, "can I use a laminator instead of a Minc?" or "can I use a craft iron?"  The answer is, I don't know because I haven't tried it.  Obviously, you are welcome to try any method but I'll stick with what I know works for me.  That being said, I've got more Poinsettia cards to make!
now carry on,