Happy Friday and hello spring? The end of February was glorious where we are, warm, sunny and dry. I think we got a little carried away with ourselves and started to imagine outdoor activities and ice-cream! I know, I’m guilty of pushing the woolly pullies to the back of the wardrobe.
However, March came in and whoops!! Stormy, wet and cold weather was back. My wardrobe is a mess, as the woollies have been dragged over the spring garments and scarves pulled out from under thin tops. Ah well, it was a bit bonkers to be honest not to mention worrying.
My morning walks with Cooper are a good opportunity to watch the season change however and gather some inspiration along the way. The pine branch above will find its way into my sketch book and may even be used next Christmas. The fern will be used in a print I think and already I’ve added a small piece in my Simple Stories planner layout. I touched it with a brayer and a little white ink to tone it down and help it blend into the page better.
I also used a little on my WOW! Embossing Powder Facebook challenge piece. This month the challenge is all about foils and I was desparate to use mine in an abstract way. I love abstract backgrounds and using them this way over a smooshed ink layer was so much fun.
I’m declaring March Nature Inspiration month just because I can! Why not try including a little nature in your work?
Wow, December 1st has arrived and it’s time to start bombarding social media with Christmas makes!! My work table looks like a bomb has exploded in my studio, seriously!! I have to vacuum the floor every day to pick up the glitter before the animals tread it through the house on their paws!
Last weekend I hosted a workshop for the Mozaik ladies where we made a Winter themed canvas. We had a wonderful day and I have to say it’s the first time everyone actually finished a project from start to finish so I’m hugely proud of all of them.
I’ve been promising the ladies for quite some time now a mixed media canvas project and for one reason or another we’ve never quite taken it on. So I was determined this time to go for it and throw all sorts of materials and techniques at them and they really embraced the theme. Every one of them produced something wonderful which made me very happy.
As it’s the first of the month, that means a new WOW! Embossing Powders Facebook Challenge and the final theme of the year is Silver and Gold.
I brought out my favourite stamps, which I use every year without fail (everyone has their favourites), the script stamp is from IndigoBlu and the star is a wood mounted one from Stampers Anonymous and paired them with Metallic Silver and Atlantic Seaspray Embossing Powder from WOW!.
Right now I’m crafting myself silly preparing for a Christmas Market where I’ll have a small stand.
Good morning from a the sunny Dutch coast where we’re taking a few days break to recharge and rest. It’s the first time taking the dog too so his reaction to the sea will be priceless.
This week it was my turn to post on the WOW blog and the theme for the month is Embossing Glitter. I’m really embracing my glittery side and find myself adding some to almost everything these days. I never thought I’d say that.
I have this awsome stamp set from Jane Davenport which I used on this card and thought it reminded me of Asian art which inspired me to go for this Asian design.
Look at this little clip, isn’t it cute? Even if I do say so myself I think I had a flash of real inspiration here.
The clip came as part of the June Sweet Treat box from Paper Pen and Plan and Clare set us a challenge to create something using it so that’s just what we did. The idea hit me when I saw the jumbo sized tissue paper circle confetti which Clare has started putting in the boxes as part of the packaging. I had the thought to make tissue paper flowers and glue them all onto the clip but sadly the confetti was just a bit too small. However the box packaging was full of lovely tissue paper which I could cut circles from as much as I wanted.
The process couldn’t be simpler. You just need a hole making tool, a brad to hold the layers of tissue together, a circle of card a bit smaller than the tissue and a little felt bobbly ball for the centre which conveniently came in the Sweet Treat box too.
With about 8 or 9 layers of tissue, I made a hole and pushed the brad through to just hold them together while I snipped all the way around not quite into the centre.
Taking each layer individually I scrunched them up into the centre to create the ruffled effect. I glued the card circle onto the back along with the top of the clip and a second card circle.
I ended up making two and thought it would look much better if I glued them back to back to make a pompom flower.
March has been a funny month so far. The beginning of the month was super cold, then the sun came out and we had a brief taste of Spring and then the snow and cold temperatures returned just to keep us on our toes and after another hint of sunshine the rain has returned to make us feel miserable again.
Meanwile in the studio there have been lots of projects on the go.
The theme for the month of March is Sparkles and the quote was the inspiration behind the card. It was a brilliant opportunity to go over the top with glitter, something which normally makes me nervous but it gave me great pleasure this time around. I only wish my photo would have captured how much the die cuts do sparkle, it’s amazing.
The beginning of March I did something a bit different and contributed to a new online magazine called the Creative Planner by submitting a coloring page for their self care challenge. If you’d like to download and use my colouring page or indeed read the whole magazine you’ll find it here. The Creative Planner are on Facebook and Instagram if you want to follow them too.
For a while now I’ve been sewing notebook covers in felt which have been very successful with orders coming in for custom sizes and applique designs on the front. I’ll continue to make these notebook covers which you can find here on my Etsy store at basementsixtyfive along with pen holders also in felt but I’ve also been making covers in canvas which brings other possibilities like being able to paint on it too. This little A6 version was made using canvas from Canvas Corp and I created a blog tutorial showing how to get the design on the canvas fabric. I have a feeling you’ll be seeing more of this and others in the future. The design is of course my stamped houses which looks just so cool here on the front.
I’m still experimenting with different bullet journal layouts but the one thing I’m sticking with for now is my hand drawn style and the watercolour paints. I know this one is far from perfect but it’s definitely the style I want to continue with. The mini stickers come from Paper Pen and Plan on Etsy They’re just the perfect size too.
Have a good weekend everyone and I’ll catch up next week.
Hello everyone and hello to March. This week has been so absolutely cold and taking morning walks has made it feel like my eyeballs have been freezing in their sockets but at the same time we’ve had some gorgeous sunshine to with it so the countryside has been beautiful. Cooper loves it but then he’s got the perfect coat.
￼Well January has been a bit of a mixed bag so far. My lack of blogging has been due to a broken laptop which has gone away to be fixed so I’m left using my tablet for writing which is a slow process and my phone for photos. I’m getting a bit fed up of one fingered typing. My fat fingers keep making mistakes and the auto correct changes my text into something altogether rubbish, sometimes totally inappropriate too.
That’s not good…… Hopefully it’ll come back soon before I go bonkers.
Meanwhile…….having a bit more time on my hands meant I could have a bit of a tidy up in the studio and as a result came across a pile of leather pieces. I’d almost forgotten about them in the back of a cupboard. Given to me by my friend Lena, they originally came from a sofa swatch book so are mostly A4 size but with odd holes and stitching where they were held into the book.
They’re just the right size and stiffness for making into notebook covers like this. I broke four needles sewing the strap on but it was worth the effort.
I’ve made this green one big enough to take four to six notebooks comfortably with a wrap around and button closure. I love it. I might make some more this weekend.
One of my goals for this year is to journal more so last Friday in the studio I did just that and had a blast. I missed the paints and inks alot last year so I intend to bring my journal out as much as possible in 2018.
It was a perfect opportunity too to use my house stamps. After stamping and cutting them out I was happier to leave them uncoloured againsed the crazy background and I think it worked.
For this Friday in the studio I’ve turned to the journal in my travelers notebook where I’m going to start documenting the months. I’ll add some photos, notes, ephemera and stickers and keep it sketchy and informal. It’ll be a place where I can highlight everything which happens during the month plus I can add some arty backgrounds in too.
That’s it for this week. Have a good one and I’ll speak soon.
You might at one time or another find yourself overwhealmed by having so much going on or a big project/idea you really want to put into motion but just getting started is difficult and it’s easy to become disheartened, and loose focus. Everyone suffers from it at some time or another and the easiest way to deal with it is to give up and not bother. After all, why carry on if everyone else seems to be making a better job of it?
Well, take heart in the fact that this is me most days. What am I going to do about it? Telling you lot for starters. That’s a load off, then I’ll add this quote to my bullet journal where I’ll see it almost every day. It’ll be a little reminder in those times of self doubt that this is my mantra for the year.
The original sketch was part of a doodle challenge or in my case a sketch challenge hosted by Paper Pen and Plan on Facebook.
Once it was in my brand spanking new bujo I set about colouring it in with the watercolours which came in the January Sweet Treat box from Paperpenandplan on Etsy. I love these cards for carrying around in between the pages of my journal. They’re handy for traveling too.
I’m having a great time sketching random objects.
I’m looking forward to filling my sketchbook with more random stuff.
I was totally ready for February but unfortunately my computer was involved in a little accident (something heavy landed on it) and doing anything on my phone or tablet was a pain. That includes photos which when I see them now on my computer they’re out of focus which is really annoying. It’s back now which is great but I’m off on a little trip to UK visiting family and friends so it’s back to the tablet for a few days.
In the meantime I can show you what’s been happening since I last spoke and what I’ve been working on.
This year I really want to create my own planner inserts by hand which means drawing and painting the monthly calendar pages in my Carpe Diem and Bullet journal. It’s truly very satisfying to see a layout which I can say is totally me and not off the shelf. Of course I’ve still used stickers and papers as embellishments but on the whole it’s all me.
These stickers are from Paper Pen and Plan on Etsy and I just love the quote at the bottom of the page.
The Paper Pen and Plan group on Facebook have started a monthly sketch challenge and I’ve drawn up the first sketch. I created a dashboard layout also in my Carpe Diem to go with it using papers and embellishments from the February Sweet Treat box with Paper Pen and Plan.
I’ve also started a little journal in my Travelers Notebook. The pages are very thin but with a bit of gesso on the page I can add what ever I like on top. This page uses Tattered Angels sprays from Canvas Corp like paints with some scraps of paper collaged on top.
What do you do when you run out of letter stickers? Use the negatives of course.
I was absolutely thrilled this month to have my stamp design on the front of the new Craft Stamper. I’m hoping to spot it in the news agents when I’m back home so I can scoff.
This is a little close up of the projects I made using the stamp.
Well that’s all for now. Have a very good weekend and I hope the weather isn’t too horrid where you are.
Hello there and welcome to the first Friday in the studio of 2018.
Outside its stormy, wet and fairly miserable so I’m happy to be here in the basement with paints and glue.
This has to be my motto for the year “you can do it”. I just need reminding from time to time so here it is on the first monthly spread in my planner.
I think this year I really want to take up more mixed media and journaling again. I didn’t do so much last year instead focussing most of my attentions to making books and planners. I need to add more mixed media into my planners to bring the two worlds together and my sketchbook has been neglected a bit since the beginning of the year when I was adding to it almost daily. I’m really happy that Paper Pen and Plan are running a challenge this month to doodle every day so I’m taking this as an excuse to go a bit further and challenge myself to a small sketch each day. If you want to join in they’re running the challenge via their facebook group. You can find them here https://www.facebook.com/groups/paperpenandplan/ to join the group and join in the challenge.
It’s funny though but since participating in the open atelier just before Christmas and hearing what other people had to say about my work made me think about what it was I was doing and where I was going. I think I’d stopped believing in myself and had given up trying to produce anything in my art journal. For the atelier I’d made lots of mini books for scrapbookers and right at the very end – literally a couple of days before, I decided to make a few blank sketchbook/journal type albums with mixed media covers just to see how they went. Blow me if they weren’t the first books to sell and the response I got was amazing. So just from those few little books I’m now all fired up again to get out the paints and mediums.
Tomorrow is my first blog post for WOW and here’s a little sneaky peek at what’s coming up. I loved playing with texture and adding layers to this project. I’ll show you the full project tomorrow.