Saturday, December 19, 2020

Star of Hope

Hello friends,

I'm sharing a project today I created for the Sizzix release of the 3D Holly Berries Impresslit.  The background was easy to create using 8 1/2 x 11" Watercolor cardstock. I decided on using the background stamp "Sparkles"(CMS324) to stamp at random over the paper. Each time I stamped, I added white Embossing Powder and melted it with a heat tool. Each time I waited for the embossing to cool, then moved on to the next section. As you can see, I left wide open spaces for a distressed finish.

To color the watercolor cardstock (and force the white embossing to show up), I created a mix of colors, Barn Door, Festive Berries, with a little Pumice Stone and Walnut Stain, on my craft mat. I spritzed the watercolor paper with a bit of water, then smooshed the paper into the ink, quickly picking it up to dry. Any white spaces were smooshed back in the ink and dried again. Once I was satisfied, I dried the paper completely, then glued it to the Mini Etcetera Tag (8 x 4 1/2") using Collage Medium. All excess paper was cut away using a cutting knife and self healing mat board.

Metallic paper is perfect for the 3D Holly Berries.  Remember to spritz the paper with water before adding it to the Impresslit.  Then make three passes through the machine.  The Impresslit not only makes the impression, it cuts it out too - that is my favorite part.  You can leave as is or give it an aged look.  I used a damp brush and Forest Moss Distress Crayon to add some dimension to the berries.
To create the Cathedral Window:
  1. Use the Embossing Dabber to add embossing ink to the surface of the Etcetera Cathedral Window.
  2. With the window on disposable paper, pour Silver Embossing Powder over the top.  Tap off excess powder, returning it to the jar.
  3. Use an Embossing Gun to melt the powder, then let cool.
To create the background for the window:
  1. REMOVE the protective plastic sheet on the piece of Mirrored product.
  2. Sprinkle on 3-4 drops of Mushroom Alcohol Ink + a couple drops of gold Alloy.
  3. Sprinkle on a few drops of Blending Solution to break up the Alloy. Swirl around till you get the look you want, then dry with heat tool to stop the movement. I think when creating this kind of stained glass look it's alway nice to leave some of the clear Mirrored showing.
  4. Cut the window shape using Tim Holtz/Tonic scissors and add to the Cathedral Window.
Once the window is complete, add both the window and Holly Berries (cut to fit) to the Mini Tag with 3D Foam Squares.  Note - the window is offset on purpose to balance the sitting Paper Dolls I chose to use.  I also added some words from the Sticker Book to the upper right corner and a Vintage Clip at the top.
I chose this couple before I even started the tag.  As always, I used Distress Crayons and a Water Brush to color the Paper Dolls.  Broken China for his shirt, Aged Mahogany for his stripe socks and cheeks.  Peeled Paint for her dress.
You might notice it better here, that I used the tip of the Detailer Water Brush to pick up some Broken China crayon and make dots in patches over her dress. This creates an illusion of pattern, rather than just a plain dress.
I cut watercolor cardstock using the Holiday Brushstroke Thinlit then painted them with the Water Brush and Distress Ink.  I added some cheesecloth to fill in behind as I added the diecuts with Collage Medium.
I also added a small ribbon bow and and the chipboard number 56 from the Junk Drawer Baseboard pack. I wish I had taken more photos before this got sent off in the mail so this one will have to do.  

So what started as a simple embossed background on water color paper became the visual texture and basis for this Mini Tag with a Christmas feel.  
Thank you for stopping by today!
now carry on,

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Shaker Santa

Hello friends,

Just wanted to share a quick post about an ornament I made with the stamp set Vintage Holidays and a Sizzix Shaker Dome.  The Dome is 3 1/2" wide so you have a lot of space to work with.  It's the perfect size for a card front or an ornament.    

I cut a circle using the dome as the template.  This will be the backing.
I used the stamping method that Tim showed in his Saturday series - Holiday 2020: part 4.  The technique does not come till the 1:48 mark but you can easily slide to that time spot to see it in action.  It's easy and very effective.  The only thing I changed was that I used Distress Crayon to color the Santa and not paint.
Once Santa was stamped, painted, stamped again and then cut out, I used Collage Medium to glue him to the snowflake circle. 
The next step is the add the shakety-bits to the center of the circle.  Don't use too much!
Peel the protective plastic from the dome and add it to the circle.  Press down on the edge to seal the paper to the dome.
I added word from the Christmas Remnant Rubs to the left side.  The dome is sturdy so don't think you will smash the plastic by using a bone folder to rub the words on.
I added red stripe Trim Tape around the edge and onto the back.  Then, I used a bone folder to smooth out the tape around the circle.
I decided to run a bead of Glossy accents around the circle to secure the edge of the Trim Tape.  To "cover" the glue I sprinkled Clear Rock Candy Glitter over the top and set it aside to dry.  
I made a knot in the Velvet Ribbon and hot glued it to the dome.
On the back I wanted something to use as a gift tag.  This stamp is also part of the Vintage Holidays set.
You can also see how I added the red and white string hanger.  I used Collage Medium to add the string and then added the little piece of Velvet Ribbon over the top to secure.
I love the way it turned out and like I said previously, you really could fill the domes with almost anything. 
Now carry on,

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Mad for Plaid Etcetera Tag

Hello friends,

The house is decorated for the holiday season and we are counting down the days till Christmas!  I have enjoyed sitting and reading in the morning time, with the glowing Christmas tree and the fireplace going (It's electric so I only have to click the button).  I'm going to miss it once the tree comes down in January.

As I was working on todays project, I could not help but think of my mom.  One of her favorite Christmas songs was Silver Bells by Andy Williams.  As I was putting together the Christmastime die pieces the song kept playing in my head.  I thought I would share the words here.

Silver Bells
City sidewalks busy sidewalks  
Dressed in holiday style 
In the air 
There's a feeling 
of Christmas 
Children laughing 
People passing 
Meeting smile after smile 
And on ev'ry street corner you'll hear 

Silver bells silver bells 
It's Christmas time in the city 
Ring a ling hear them sing 
Soon it will be Christmas day 

Strings of street lights 
Even stop lights 
Blink a bright red and green 
As the shoppers rush 
home with their treasures 

Hear the snow crunch 
See the kids bunch 
This is Santa's big scene 
And above all this bustle 
You'll hear 
Silver bells, silver bells 
It's Christmas time in the city 
Ring-a-ling, hear them sing 
Soon it will be Christmas day
So lets get started on the tag!
Paint the small Etcetera Tag (5.5 x 10") with Rustic Wilderness Distress Paint.  Let dry completely.
Use the Distress Splatter Brush to flick Picket Fence Distress Paint over the surface of the tag.  Once dry, add a thin layer of Collage Medium over the surface to seal.  NOTE: I like to add CM so when I add Texture Paste in the next step, I have the ability to wipe away any excess without damaging the paint.  Dry the Collage Medium with heat tool.
Working quickly, use the Sparkle Stencil and a Palette Knife to add Texture Paste Stars on the top half of the tag.
Immediately add Gold Embossing Powder over the wet Texture Paste (it only works if the paste is wet enough to hold the embossing powder).  Set aside to air dry at least 30 minutes.
Once the Paste is dry, use an embossing gun to melt the Embossing Powder.
Scribble some Walnut Stain Distress Crayon onto craft mat.  Pick up crayon with a damp brush and work your way around the stars coloring any of the white Texture Paste that might still be showing.
Adhere patterned paper to the back of the tag.  This one with the red berries is from the idea-ology 2020 Christmas Paper pad.  The paper must be on the back before the lights are threaded through the tag.
  1. Drill a hole in the center bottom portion of the tag for the lights.
  2. Thread lights from the back to the front of the tag.
  3. Wind lights into a circle and adhere to tag surface with scotch tape or hot glue.
  4. Secure battery pack to the back of tag with Thin Foam Squares.  I covered my battery pack with paper to blend into the background.

  1. Find the two plaid frames from of the Baseboards Christmas pack.  
  2. Using Scor-tape, adhere the Vellum Scene to the center opening in the red plaid frame (do not use a wet medium or vellum will bubble).  I chose the one the scene that looks like it could be a toy store window.
  3. Now adhere the red plaid frame to the green checked frame.
  4. Since the frame needs to sit high over the lights,  I added 4 small wood blocks to the back to raise it.
While the wood blocks were drying, I went to work on the shelf below...
  1. Cut two scallop Etcetera Trim pieces to the fit the tag.  Since I'm using the small Etcetera Tag, I cut the trim so there were 11 scallops (they cut pretty easy with Tonic/Tim Holtz scissors).
  2. Glue the two pieces together to make one thick shelf. 
  3. Paint the shelf with Picket Fence Distress Paint.  Once dry, add Crackle Texture Paste over the top and set aside to dry.
  4. Once dry, go over the top with Walnut Stain Distress Crayon to bring out the cracks in the paste.
  5. Use Collage Medium to add cotton batting to the top of the trim.  I also added it to the "window ledge" of the red frame.
  6. Add the frame centerpiece to the center of the tag so the lights end up behind the Vellum Scene.
  7. Using Collage Medium, add the shelf under the frames so they sit right on top and become like storefronts.  Let dry completely.

While the shelf is drying, start on the Christmastime dies.  The hardest thing about this die is making decisions on clothing.  There are so many choices!!  I started with a red coat and then I ran across this paper from last year that changed my mind.  I knew I had to use it even though there were two plaid frames in the background!  She really pops now compared to the red coat that blended into the background. She also had back boots but I changed them to gold Metallic, because really, who doesn't want a pair of gold boots at Christmas?  I used the Metallic paper for not only the gold boots, but her head band and the center of the lamppost.
Once all the pieces were assembled I used foam squares to add them to the frame.  
  1. Add a double row of "a merry little christmas" Trim Tape to the bottom of the tag.  
  2. Greenery was added to the shelf that was left from last weeks Package Topper projects.  If you missed that post you can see it here.  I also added holly and a red Bauble to the lamp post.
  3. Add a bit of wired tinsel to the top using a glue gun. 
  4. Any kind of ribbon or string can be added to the top of the tag.  I used red and white string and a couple of glittered bells.
  5. Once everything was in place I tapped a bit of Collage Medium onto the cotton batting and sprinkled Distress Mica Flakes over the top to add some sparkle to the snow.

This project makes me happy! This die is one of my favorites for the season and I can see it being used over and over.

The pandemic may be keeping us close to home so even though it might be a different year, it could actually be the best year, because we are relying on the Spirit of the Season to carry us through to 2021. 
now carry on,

Saturday, December 12, 2020

Christmas Matchbox Tray

Hello friends!

I happy to be here today sharing one of my favorite makes for the season.  I first created the Matchbox Tray for Halloween and I loved it so much that I wanted to make another one for Christmas.  The Matchbox Tray is made with a large Vignette Tray and one package of idea-ology Matchboxes.  After that, you can really make any kind of tray you want...any theme or color and any product you wish.  It could be personalize for one specific person or for a family.  The only parameter is keep things in scale, meaning balance the boxes (visually) so the tray is not heavier on one end or on the top or bottom.  For instance, the flair button on the top right is heavy and needed to be balanced by the larger poinsettia on the bottom left.  So even though I made the boxes as individual little "windows" I always aware of how it fits/or balances with the group.  

Separate the Matchboxes so the outside (the box) and the drawer are in two groups.
Cover the first group (or the outside) with paper from the 8 x 8" Christmas Mini paper stash. There are so many choices of patterns that it can be daunting trying to choose the right combination of papers. I just went for a mix of colors and patterns, with the one in the top center repeated as the background paper. If you pick a busy background paper like I did, the boxes can be plainer/simpler patterns.
Once you have covered each box with paper, use your fingertip to wipe Crackle Texture Paste over the edges of each box. The boxes will eventually be glue together on the sides so it's best to keep the Crackle Paste on the top of the box. Set aside to dry for at least 30 minutes (timing depends on how thick you put the texture paste on).
The second group or "drawers" were painted on the outside with Picket Fence Distress Paint and the inside with Gilt, one of my favorite metallic paints from the Dina Wakley's Media Line. You do not have to paint the back of the box since it will be glued to the tray.
As for the Vignette Tray itself...I used Collage Medium to adhere red woodgrain from the paper pad on the outside of the tray (you can see the outside it in the last photo) and my favorite holly paper on the inside of the tray.  You can cover the entire inside or cover just the edges like I did (the matchboxes will cover the center).  I added a layer of Collage Medium over the paper on the inside as well as the outside to seal.
Once the paper was dry, I added "A Merry Little Christmas" Tape on the edge of the Tray.
I like a nice wash of Distress Crayon over the sealed paper to age it, especially in the corners.  So I scribbled on some Walnut Stain Distress Crayon and used a damp paintbrush to move it around till I was satisfied with the result.

Please Note: I created each box BEFORE I glued them to the tray with Collage Medium.
Box 1 - Paint the inside of the box with Collage Medium.  Lightly sprinkle some Distress Mica Flakes in the box to create an appearance of snow. I had some idea-ology wood slices left form last year so I split the wood slice in half (with an awl and hammer), gluing one half to the back of the box and the other half to the bottom for the deer to stand on.  I used Walnut stain Distress Crayon to color the white deer.  I also added a metal Christmas Token in the background with a Thin foam square.

Box 2 - Paint the poinsettia charm with Distress Paint in Candied Apple, Mowed Lawn and Fossilized Amber. Once paint is dry, paint on Collage Medium.  Use the Glitter Duster to add Rock Candy Glitter over the top.  Wrap red and white string around the box a couple of times, then add the poinsettia charm.  Secure with a bow.  Add a Thin foam square to the back of the poinsettia to secure to the box.  Using Collage Medium, wrap a Stitched Scraps piece around the side of the box (super easy to use when you don't have the time or patience to make your own).

Box 3 - Using Thin Foam Squares, add poinsettia ephemera (all ephemera is from the 2020 Snippets pack - smaller than the regular ephemera) to the top of the box.  I did trim away the stems and some of the background so it fit better on the box.  Cut the word PEACE from the Label Tape.  Cut the right end in a V and add directly to the box.

Box 4 - Repeat the idea of the snowy background (box 1), but this time with Rock Candy Glitter.  The Dog Ephemera is on a double stack of regular Foam Squares.  Because foam squares do not like to stick to glitter, I created the double stack and added it to the box, but did not remove the top paper.  Then I painted  the Collage Medium in the box and added the Rock Candy Glitter.  Once I was ready to add the little dog, I just peeled the paper off the top foam square and added the ephemera.

Box 5 - Background is the same as Box 1 but I made sure there was no Mica on the left so I could add the Special Delivery Snippet.  The tree is the smallest of the Woodland Trees.  I painted the base with Candied Apple Distress Paint, sprayed the tree with Bundled Sage Distress Spray Stain, then added Collage medium to the branches and rolled it in Rock Candy.  I love the trees with red bases!

Box 6 - The frame is frame the Deco Frame pack.  It fit perfectly on the top of the box.  All I had to do was rub Picket Fence Distress Paint over the top of the frame and let it dry.  Then I pounced Mushroom Alcohol Ink over the top to bring back the detail.  I added the smallest star from the Adornments Stars pack (painted with gold Mixative Alcohol Ink).  The words are Clippings from the Sticker Book.

Box 7 - The easiest box ever...Add Snippets ephemera to box with Thin Foam Squares. Done.

Box 8 - The snowballs are Baubles I coated in Collage Medium and rolled in Rock Candy.  I actually coat them with the glue, then plop them in the jar of glitter and shake the jar side to side till coated (don't let it get buried in the glitter).  I just leave it in the jar till I complete 3 snowballs then remove them with tweezers to the craft mat to dry completely.  Once the snowballs are dry, I added them to the box with Collage Medium.  I left enough room at the top for the clipping sticker.

Box 9 - I used two tiny wood blocks to secure the silver "C" Stencil Chip in place.  You could also use foam squares but you would probably have to stack at least 4 to make it work.  The word Christmas is from the sticker book.

Box 10 - Add Snippet ephemera to the box with Collage medium.  Add the Tiny Clip at the top to appear as if it is the only thing holding the ephemera.  Adhere the small Flair Button to the box.

Box 11 - Rub Picket Fence Distress Paint over the Snowflake.  Once dry, add Collage Medium and Rock Candy Glitter, let dry again.  Punch a small hole in the box. Thread the red and white string through the hole, adding the large Snowflake to the string before tying in a bow.  Secure Snowflake with a Thin Foam Square.

Box 12 - Use Collage Medium to add a crown (idea-ology Treasures), tiny lace collar (vintage lace) and Transparent Wings to the Salvaged Doll.  Set aside to dry.  
Cut a piece of acetate to fit the top of the box. Add a Christmas Remnant Rub to the lower right side. 
Using a Foam Square or even hot glue, add the Salvaged Doll to the box.  Add a small amount of Rock Candy.  Add Collage Medium around the lip of the box to adhere the acetate you cut previously.  Let dry.  Add the gold pinked edge Tape from the idea-ology Trim Tape pack to the edge of the box.  This will cover any excess glue on the edges of the acetate. 

And for good measure, add a Mini Hardware Pull to one end of the box, as if it is an old library drawer. I added Hardware Heads to each end so it looks like the pull is screwed to the box. And lastly, I added a Clippings sticker from the Sticker Book, "Season to be Jolly" (which it truly is).

Thank you for stopping by. I hope you like this piece as much as I do.  I swear I could make one for every season (maybe I will).

carry on now,