#445

Busy busy busy. Almost like I forgot to keep blogging…

Anyway, I’ve been balancing between multiple projects, trying to keep the mess at bay and sleep. Not all going to plan, but slowly progressing while keeping myself busy.

A couple of things I have discovered to improve my cardmaking that I can share, making the blog more than pretty pictures.

The first, pictured above, is making patterned papers look fancier. There are heaps of ways of getting cheap paper, or paper that is a bit plain, and turn it into the expensive looking ones really easily. High grade papers often have dimension, glitter and glossy areas on the patterns. You can personally decorate patterns using a variety of materials, including glossy accents, glitter glue, shimmer pens, gel pens, fine liners, markers and so on. It’s very lenient, as it will depend on your tastes and what paper you have in your own stash. The paper shown in the picture was from a card kit that came with a magazine. I liked the pattern, but I experimented by adding a shadow to one side and I like it much more. Try different designs and use whatever you have to accentuate patterns and come up with your own creations.

The other discovery came about when I was thinking about how bad I am at stamping, and I don’t like the mixed results when trying to get a good impression. This lead to the idea of scanning in the plastic stamp sheet that comes with the prestamped images. This worked well for me. Ensure you have a white sheet of paper behind when scanning, and this allows you to have the images on your computer to resize and print at any time. I was able to enlarge some stamps I have and print them in light grey, a colour I don’t own in ink pads. I had been stamping out all my stamps to keep on the computer anyway, but this way it’s already been stamped nicely.

I hope these tips help. I have a huge amount of ideas for blogs. Getting to them is another story.

Go forth and create.

#444

It has been far too hot to think, the last couple of days, let alone craft anything, so cardmaking hasn’t progressed at all.

While struggling to cool down today, I watched Zootopia while I did some colouring in. This was a great movie, and it inspired be to draw the main character, Judy Hopps. I based the picture off the official pictures of her, and basically copied what I saw. I did this a lot when I was learning to draw, as an exercise. I’d prefer to take a character and change the pose or clothing as a challenge, but today I lacked the brain power to do so.

Last week while I was out, for the first time in a month, I found that the shops had changed into their Christmas apparel and with it came the calendar stall at the shopping centre. I usually get a cheap calendar each year, always full of kittens, but my partners eye was caught on a calendar featuring his favourite game characters (Heroes of the Storm.) I decided to see what else was there, as there are often funny or kitten covered ones. Just before I was going to stop looking, I found a 365 day calendar with artwork by Johanna Basford. If you have seen certain past post, you’ll know I have an artist colouring book of hers, that I love. I was hoping this had the same artist style quality paper, but it doesn’t. Each day contains snippets of her colouring pages and the date on thin, loose leaf paper, all contained in a lovely box which features her line work with golden accents. 

I don’t have any disillusions that I’ll colour one a day, so I’m not going to hold myself to it. Maybe just the important dates, and use the others for crafting and when I’m bored.

#443

Christmas cards are full steam ahead, with plenty of supplies and crafting stations set up and ready. To be honest, I probably had enough left overs from last year to make this year’s cards, but I have gotten quite a few more supplies that I’m excited to be using this year.

I’ve been die cutting frantically, inking profusely and glittering everything and everyone that crosses my path. This has been a good time as I’ve been in the mood to be making a bunch of cards. Hopefully I can start finishing them, and not have a box of just started cards like I do now from last year.

I’m feeling a very traditional, red, green and gold vibe this year, though there have been a few exceptions. Also, reindeer, gingerbread men and Christmas trees are taking a forefront in the focal department, as there have been a rise in supplies featuring them.

Before this blog post sound anymore like a news report, I’m going to take my leave.

Back to you in the newsroom.

#442

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It’s getting late, so I’ll be quick. Even the cats are tired from chasing all the moths that spring has brought.

With the birthday money that I received, I decided I needed to invest in a new trimmer as I was getting increasingly impatient with my old one, which left so many burrs on the edge of the paper that I needed to use a pair of scissors anyway. After researching, looking at sites and reviews, ( which I rarely do, but my partner does for everything, to the point it’s annoying and I know more about his purchase options than I ever wished to.) I came to the conclusion that the GBC 4 in 1 rotary trimmer, while looked great, didn’t have any reviews, and I wasn’t willing to pay $200 on a gamble. So watching videos and looking at Amazon reviews, (not to buy on there, of course, they are awful at shipping to Australia,) and I found some useful information in reviews, which led me to look at the Dahle brand. I originally looked at the Dahle 550, but as I’m not going to be cutting on a business level, I didn’t need the industrial version, and found that the Dahle 507 was more suitable for me, and a bit cheaper.

Here he is, all lovely like. Excuse the mess… I’m creative.

I’ve only used it a few times, between naps as I wasn’t feeling well, but he’ll get a lot of use soon with the Christmas cards.

I think I’ll call him Roald, as Roald Dahl is my favourite author, and it suits him.

So much for being quick. Goodnight.

#441

A few weeks ago, when I bought a bunch of craft supplies online, I ordered some X-PressIt blending card. This is a nice smooth cardstock, that’s designed to work well with Copic markers. I’ve been meaning to buy some for ages, then when I finally received it, it took me a while to plan what I wanted, and when I couldn’t decide, it was left even longer. Finally, yesterday, I decided to just go for it. I cut an A4 piece into quarters, so I could budget my ten pages, and not feel daunted by a whole page, or annoyed if it turned out badly.

The paper was lovely to work on, and felt smoother than regular cardstock. As written on the packet, blending was lovely. I did add coloured pencil over the top of the markers, to add details and get a better variety where my Copic marker collection is lacking, and due to no roughness in the paper (tooth, as it’s often referred to), layering the pencil got a bit difficult and waxy. I could help this by adding some workable fixative before working on it more. She’s rather pale, as I wasn’t willing to take too many risks, and the picture I was loosely referencing was very brightly lit, so I even had to enhance what little shadow there was to make it more colourful.

Considering I have many cards to make, and painting to do, in the next few weeks, I wanted to do some drawing first. Perhaps I’ll get a chance to draw something on some cards. I haven’t planned much for them, although I did buy a 100 pack of gold card today…

#440

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I have been wanting to play with clay for so long, but with the inspection and no space available, it wasn’t an achievable goal. I had even bought some clay tools that I was waiting to use, and today was finally the day.

While waiting, I had been looking at pictures and videos as well as playing with textures on my bluetac eraser.

I had the idea of making relief sculptures in bottle caps, and had lots of fun creating the two pendants above. I’m a little worried, as I researched whether bottle caps can be heated in the oven, and it said they should be fine. I’m a bit worried about the other one, as it’s a bezel of unknown materials. I quite like the coral filled one, but if it doesn’t work, I can always build the clay onto a circle and glue it on after baking.

One main reason I am back into bottle cap creations, is that I bought a tiny hand drill, used for jewellery, which makes holes in various materials, like aluminium. I was hoping it would go through shell as well, but it’s not working well on it. Maybe I just need to get the right size combination. I’ve been able to go through pencils, layered cardboard, and wood with no problems.

#439

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Gojira!

I was cleaning today (a bit,) and I found a scrap of paper on the floor. I actually found quite a few, but this one gave me some inspiration. It had been punched with a maple leaf punch, and torn in just the right way that made me think of Godzilla rising out of the ocean. I used the piece of paper as a template, and filled in details, before colouring in the scene with pencils.

This wasn’t the first time in this cleaning season I’d found inspiration. I also made a box thing using catalogue paper and plastic shopping bags…

Cat for size reference. Though the cat is large.

#438

Hey everyone! I missed you! Did you miss me? Awwww thank you…

I’ve been super busy lately making super secret projects that could be enterprising secret super stuff. So I can’t show you guys yet, but it’s been taking up a bunch of time, so I haven’t had much to show you. I did get a bunch of new dies and supplies in the mail, but I am still waiting for a bunch of mail (including an early birthday present) so I’ll likely show you all of that at once.

Anyways, I thought I’d show you a baby reindeer stamp that I got from a magazine and coloured in today. The set had ornaments, flowers, and sentiments, as well as a tree embossing folder, that I haven’t tried yet. I figured I should get the Christmas stuff early, so I can make all my cards on time. Despite planning ahead, I know I’ll do the usual last minute rush, it’s who I am… 

Also, just as I get something to show you, I have another inspection coming up, so many cleaning. Though I’ve kept mainly to one pile of mess (aka room) this time, so cleaning should be easier. Should…
Keep crafty, my deers.

#437

Very quick update. Made some more bows. So much easier with half sorted ribbons and lighter sealing methods. I haven’t been working on a large project, apart from cards for family, so not much to show lately. Not great for blogging fuel, but I am planning a couple of ideas for larger blog posts. Hopefully I’ll get around to doing them.

I tried getting my sleep pattern to be better lately, but it turns out being a zombie all day gets even less done than sleeping most of the day away, and having short bursts of energy. It is also more dangerous in my case. I’m lucky I figured out how to use the two button safety lighter.

Sleep well, and sweet dreams.