#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.

Day #143

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Plaster of Paris.
This material is kept close to my heart. Whether it’s painting cookie monster as a kid, casting and painting cats with my brother or being the only one the teacher entrusted to mix the plaster properly in sculpture class in college.
I’ve been looking for months for plaster of Paris, which suddenly disappeared from the store I used to buy it. Today I walked down to the hardware store, and brought a kilo bag of it.
I have a couple of tips, that I’ve learned, to share. First off, mixing. If you’re mixing a big batch, the best way to mix is in a giant bowl with your hand. It’s useful to have two people, as you do not want any moisture getting near the plaster bag. Fill the bowl with about a third to half of cold water. Moving very gently back and forth with your hand, add a small amount of plaster at a time. Wait for it to dissolve before adding more. Move slowly, so you avoid making bubbles. The mixture will be ready when you lift your hand out of the mixture and it will be covered with a slightly thick milky film. Once the mix is ready, you’re ready to create. You can either create a mould for clay, take a cast of a mould or pour into a disposable container for carving. When taking or creating moulds, the best way to get details is to use an old paintbrush to coat the area where the plaster will be going while it’s still runny. Once coated, get a plastic spoon and spoon it gently onto your project. If you time it right, it’ll probably be getting thick towards the end of the process. Try to make more than you’ll need, I’m not sure that adding layers of varying degrees of set plaster would be as strong. Plaster can be sanded and carved with ease. It is quite heavy, so unless your pieces are tiny, they may not be suitable for cards or paper crafting. I’m planing on gluing mine to a wooden box to decorate it for a friend. Plaster of paris is porous, so doesn’t need any preparation before painting. It’s an all round excellent medium to work with for all ages and skill levels.

10/10 would recommend.

Tip #7

Apparently heat waves in Australia are not good for clear stamps… especially when not stored properly.
I have this lovely rose stamp, you may have see me use in on a card coloured in blue for a wedding. Lovely.

Unfortunately, other stamps of a sturdier plastic melted their way into this stamp…

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As represented in this stamp, U R GREAT and MISS YOU are now a part of this floral bouquet.
This was a cheap stamp, but now I have to buy another set. Just a reminder to keep them away from heat and that I should actually figure out a storage method instead of chucking them in a drawer. :/