I started this book in Seth Apter's For Your Eyes Only class (hence the name) in July 2014. It took me about a month to finish it completely. Of course I had to put my own spin on it with lots of vintage images, antique trims and German Dresden. Thanks so much Seth for such an awesome class! I like how it came out - hope you do too!
I am being very brave posting pics of the old studio and sharing my remodel/move to the larger space as it continues (right now, very slowly). Believe it or not the old studio was pretty organized. I liked to call it an organized mess - LOL! It just became so cramped with so much CRAP it wasn't conducive to creating anymore. Please be kind if you comment! :0)
Update: The studio is finished! Woohoo!
Located at the Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme CT this is a yearly event. 38 structures are hidden throughout the FloGris property. The level of detail in each and every structure is just extraordinary! So much fun whether you have kids or not. A magical day!
For my birthday this year we traveled to Madison CT's Barberry Hill Farm to attend 'Dinners At The Farm' an annual summer event started by Jonathan Rapp of River Tavern in Chester CT. For two weekends in July and two weekends in August he picks two host farms to host this fabulous charity event to benefit City Seed plus two other land/farm related charities. All the food we ate was locally sourced and absolutely spectacular!
I've got so much going on the next week or so that I will be putting my Etsy Shops in vacation mode starting on Monday, December 1st. So if you were planning on purchasing from either shop you will need to get your order in by Sunday evening.
Have a creative evening everyone! T
I have been extremely productive the last couple of days! Finished my ATCs for the swap next week, the kit for the next swap in January, AND my Christmas cards which I really needed to finish before I left for Williamsburg. I don't usually post my Christmas card until Christmas Day but I had a couple of challenges that I needed to overcome to make the card the way I wanted and I thought I would share the process with you.
I used Tim Holtz's new layered snowflake die and new Thinlet set called Holiday Words; Script as well as an older embossing folder of his for the snowflake background. I pretty much ended up using almost all Tim stuff this year. As soon as I saw the layered snowflake die I knew exactly what I wanted to do for my card!
My first challenge was the embossed background. I wanted a soft white effect on the snowflakes. I've always had trouble with white inks so I tried Distress Paint in Picket Fence first. It was TOO White and the brush strokes from the dauber top didn't blend like I wanted them to. So I dug through my inks and found Snowcap White in the Adirondack Pigment Ink line. I hadn't used it in years was it dried out? Nope - still good but I realized I needed it to be really juicy. Did I have a reinker for it? YES! So I over inked the pad and used a mini ink blending tool to swirl the ink over the embossed snowflakes. Worked like a charm! It blended well so there were no brush strokes and gave the nice, soft effect I was picturing in my mind. Woohoo, one challenge solved.
The next challenge was pretty easy to solve. I initially tried a few different weights of clear acetate to figure out which gave the best embossed image. Turns out the best acetate was the heavy weight plastic packaging that so much of what we buy today comes in and it's essentially free! What a way to recycle!
The last challenge and the one that really kicked my butt was die cutting the words. They cut beautifully but I had a very difficult time getting them out of the die. They looked pretty worse for wear and not really usable by the time I got them out. Then I remembered a trick that a demonstrator showed us at the Springfield stamp show in June. She worked for Tessler Stencils and they had just come out with a beautiful line in thin dies that were highly detailed and intricate. Wax Paper. Yup, the stuff you probably already have in your kitchen. Wax Paper. I put a piece of wax paper between the die and the cardstock, ran it through my Vagabond & prayed! WOW! Worked perfectly! I still had to use my pick (carefully) to start to pop out the die, but once I got one part out the rest of the word just popped right out. Ahhhhh, yes! I love it when a plan comes together! Hee, hee!
To finish my card I edged the embossed background with Broken China Distress Ink. Then, I die cut an oval label from vellum and stamped the design with the same Distress Ink. I ran all the ovals and die cut words through my Xyron machine for a no-show adhesive on the vellum and because it made life SO much easier than applying glue to every word. I was making 20 cards after all!
To make the snowflake pop more and make it look icy I painted the backside (de-bossed side) of the embossed snowflake with the Picket Fence Distress Paint. I used the dauber to 'dry brush' the paint. I wasn't looking for complete coverage but a more random coverage. Here I wanted a streaky look. Once that side dried I applied Clear Rock Candy Distress Stickles Glue randomly with my finger to the front (unpainted side) of the snowflake. While the glue was still wet I sprinkled on the Clear Rock Candy Distress Glitter, tapping off the excess. I wanted an really icy look! Once the snowflakes were completely dry I added a punched small snowflake (punched from one of my hand painted papers that I thought looked icy) and a tiny snowflake sticker to the center of the snowflake. This hid the glue dot I used to attach the snowflake to the card.
That's it! I hope in posting these tips I save at least one person some frustration and anguish.
I have to say these ATCs worked up the fastest of any of my previous swaps. Guess I was inspired! The time period was also a bit unusual for me as I usually stick to the 1920's and earlier for my vintage images. The swap was named after a Glenn Miller song from the 40's and the images were from the 30's & 40's with a couple from the 1950's.
As always I made 10 so I have one to keep if there are 9 other swappers. Love the old Hollywood glamour, don't you?
The kit for the next swap is all set too. Having the last couple days off from work really helped me to get ahead on stuff. I even finished my Christmas cards! I usually don't post that until Christmas day but I had some challenges using some new products and I want to share them plus how I overcame them so anyone else using them will have an easier time than me.
Finished my ATC early for Tim Holtz's 12 Tag Challenge. If I didn't do it today it probably would not have gotten done at all. Gotta get busy on my ATCs for the next Lost Art ATC Swap on the 20th (plus make up the next kit) and I have to get my Christmas Cards done before I leave for Williamsburg.
His technique was pretty cool but I didn't have any of the supplies except the embellishments and I had to size it down to ATC size so this was a real challenge for me.
I think it was pretty successful. How about you?
I started by applying Distress Paints to my craft sheet, spritzing with water and then running a #8 Manila tag through the paint until I got the look I wanted. Then I stamped a leaf from his Falling Leaves set (CMS097) on the prepared tag with Potting Soil Archival Ink. Dry with a heat gun, finish as he did with a bit of foiling and set aside. Prepare a scrap piece of cardboard as directed in his tutorial (again it is bigger than an ATC for reasons I'll explain in just a bit) then I die cut with one of the Mini Tattered Leaf dies. I don't have any of the Distress Stain Sprays yet so I poured some into Mini Misters. It worked OK but it was difficult to get random spots and splashes. The spray was very fine but - oh well - it is what it is.
Next I had to adhere the cardboard layer and painted/stamped layer together. The reason I worked on bigger pieces than needed was so I could line up the stamped image and die cut layer without having to do any precision stamping or die cutting. NOTE: the stamp is much bigger than the die cut so I was able to get a pretty good alignment for the leaf veins and texture. Once the glue was dry I cut it down to ATC size using on of my square quilting rulers which allowed me to center the design on the ATC.
The photo above shows how the leaf looks close up. Once cut down to ATC size I finished as Tim did except I had to choose a shorter word that would fit on the ATC. EVERYDAY was the only one that fit properly. I kinda like the word though. Everyday miracles, everyday life, live everyday, everyday journey.... I could go on and on - and on.
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