Thursday, August 23, 2012

Getting the Hang of Sketches.

Having worked to a sketch for my last two layouts I decided to try it again.  For this layout I used a  sketch (p57) from the August issue of Scrap365.

 For my butterflies I used a double stencilling technique found in this months Scrap365.  I used chalks for the main butterfly and then added the spots with acrylic paint.
 When I came to put the letters on I discovered that something somewhere had moved and the letters now covered one of the butterflies.  Determined that this should not happen I cut around the butterflies wing and raised it over the letter.  I then stuck a small piece of paper (cut from under the photos) on the back to fill in the hole.
This accidently added a quirky touch to the layout and I was glad of my mistake.
I hadn't mounted my photos but they needed some highlighting so I delicately coloured in-between them with my watercolour pencils.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Scrap 365 Sketch Challenge September Part 2

Having stuck quite closely to the original sketch for my first layout I decided to have a second attempt but this time use the sketch more for inspiration rather than exactly.  
Once again I used one large photo instead of the three small ones and this time I used small photos instead of the circles down the side of the photo.  I also replaced the small cluster in the bottom left with an almost mirror image of the top right.

I love adding pretty fiddly little bits to my layout and so added these beads to the end of the ribbons on my journalling tags.
 I had to use feathers somewhere in the layout to mimic our fascinaters  and so I cut two in half and tucked the halves under paper pieces around the photo.
 The paper was the perfect colour for our clothes but I wanted to add some purple to tie in with Mum's dress and so I coloured a few sections with purple glitter.
 When using my cosmic shimmer sprays for another layout I had placed the paper to be sprayed onto a piece of card and then rubbed the mist while wet to hide the area where the paper had been.  The resulting card has been sitting in my paper stash and was ideal to use for the lettering.  I used a stencil on the back of the card and then hand cut my letters.  I mounted them onto white ribbon coloured with ink so that they stood out form the patterned background.

I wanted to journal onto tags but didn't want them hid in pockets so I hinged them onto the page and secured them by tying their tags together.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Hopefully the last of Tanzania

Having found my extra photos I have now put them on pages.  Thank goodness we are on school holidays and I have lots of spare time.
This first layout was all about the kittens we used to have at regular intervals.  There was no vet who we trusted to spay our female cat and so every four months we would have little ones under our feet.  The locals would be queuing up at our door to take them off our hands as they were good rat catchers.
This gave me the opportunity to rummage around and find all the cat stamps I had hidden away to use for embellishments.  Each cat is stamped and embossed using the same ink but on a different background.
To emphasise the softness of the kittens I used a circle of felt but it looked quite bare.  I then found a strand of wool which I had bought in a mixed fibres bundle from our local work aid shop and crocheted a ring to go on top of the felt.

This page remembers the time a chicken (kuku in swahili) got into our lounge and wouldn't come out form under the christmas tree.
 I found myself with a blank area under the small photos and a blank mind on how to fill it, which I wanted to do as I don't work well with white space.  I then found these little confetti reindeer I had salvaged years ago, sanded them down and then painted them with acrylic paint.  They filled the space perfectly.

Another Christmas layout this time remembering how often the rains would start on Christmas day.
 I have always loved seeing the negatives of letter stickers used on layouts and this layout gave me the chance to use them.
The large stars were made using my cuttlebug on old cider cans and then colouring with alcohol inks.  The smaller stars were cut out of air-drying clay using a child's stamp and then painted with acrylic paint.

And from Christmas we go to Easter, well Palm Sunday.  I wanted to use two techniques on this page.  Leaving the area of my title devoid of pattern and painting/ drawing a large palm leaf as my background.  For the latter I used my pastels and edged with watercolour pencil.

For my border under the photo I used a mixture of ribbons, a strip cut out form an old shopping bag plastic lining, a  loosely woven fabric from a pot plant and a small strip of crochet.

Scrap 365 Sketch Challenge September

I struggle to work with sketches so this was an even bigger than intended challenge for me.  Because of this I stuck quite closely to the original sketch although I replaced the small photos with one larger one.
 Using pale colours was a break from my usual brights and leaving a lot of white space on un-patterned paper was really hard but I was pleased with the final result.
The page tells the story of us trying to buy a Rossi Ice Cream and not being able to find the ice cream van although we could hear it.
The top of my photo was too harsh and so I tore it and coloured the torn edge with my water colour pencil.  I used foam pads under the top edge of the photo and under some of the swirls on the large wave to lift the corners and add dimension.
Having bought some canvas backed plastic for the UKS tags swap I decided to use some of the remains (coloured with distress stain) to make my circles.  Working on the theme of running around I used my spirograph to decorate the canvas and then mounted on a card circle which I had coloured using chalks.  I also drew the pattern onto card and mounted onto a canvas circle. 
I mounted one pattern onto a white button which I had coloured with alcohol inks.
 The ice cream cone was cut from my old Sainsbury's shopping bag.
I used my water colour pencils to edge the paper pieces, to draw the main title and to edge the page.

Thursday, August 9, 2012


Just found more Tanzanian photos.  That will teach me to tidy up my craft room.  I'm working on them now

Saturday, August 4, 2012

The Last of Tanzania

So long as I haven't mislaid any photos these are the last of my pages on Tanzania.  In a way it is a final goodbye to our time there and the closing of a chapter.
Both pages though are also very English.  This first one tells of a weekend away in a hotel which was very much in the old colonial style.
I inked some white thickers letters using Tim Holtz stain and then coloured a strip around them using water colour pencil so that they stood out.  
Looking through my box of scraps I came across an old shopping bag and wrapping from a bunch of flowers.  Both of these had an old world feel to them and so I frayed and distressed the edges and used as free papers.
I also coloured some odd threads from the bag and tucked under my papers
and in the tear for my journalling tag.  I used un- inked threads on my large tag.
On both layouts I chose to cut the backing paper and slot paper or photos under it.  By allowing the background to flow over the paper/photo it held the layout together better.

The second layout celebrates a morning spent in a hotel near Lushoto.  Peter had gone on a walk from the hotel and I was forced to wait in the luxurious surroundings.  Coming from dry dusty Dodoma this was perfect.
I used the beautiful lines on the paper to frame the photo (slotting it under a cut out section) and for my journalling.
To add to my title I used a small tag tied onto the first letter.
 My ribbons and tags at the top of the page were stuck on but I then added zig zag stitching by hand and these tiny little buttons to ground them onto the page.
 My flower was inspired by an article in August's Scrap 365 magazine and the centre then filled with pearls and tiny seed beads stuck onto an acetate circle with clear craft glue.
 I stitched a small running stitch down the centre of a piece of lace and ribbon, gathered them up and added to the side of my photo.  As on the previous layout I stuck my layers of paper/doilies down in the centre only so that the edges lifted to give some depth.