Tuesday 29 December 2015

Workshop Layered Cards 2 and MIA

Welcome to Bumblebees and Butterflies and thank you for stopping by today. It has been such a busy festive season at home with preparations, visits to family and friends and a wonderful family gathering that I have not had any time to make and blog so I am sharing some cards I designed for a recent workshop at the Art of Craft in Farnborough. I have three versions using a Vintasia die that provides fabulous layers and using some foam pads created great dimension too.

This first card was my original sample made from a paper pad called Tres Chic and quite shabby in colours and patterns.

With some paper distressing, inking edges and layering up you can create what I would call a shabby vintage design.

For the next samples I wanted to show the class that you can use the same design and with a couple of tweaks in layout, colours, patterns and embellishments the effect can be quite different.

On this one I also painted some of the edges with gesso which helped to create a more shabby chic look.

For the last one I wanted to show how the effects could be more vintage in style ...

..... so I stuck to mostly neutrals - browns and creams and just added a little vintage orange in the flowers.

I shall be back Friday with some new year designs for both A Vintage Journey and Country View Crafts so I must leave you and get on with getting them done.

I hope you have had a wonderful Christmas and festive season with time to share with friends and family and maybe even some crafty time too.

Take care.

hugs Brenda xxxx

Thursday 17 December 2015

Create a scene for CVC 2 - Trees

At Ally Pally earlier in the year I bought some mdf Christmas pieces including these trees from Anna Marie Designs. Together they create a lovely Christmas tree scene, perfect for my second DT sample for the current Country View Crafts Challenge - create a scene.

I painted the trees with decoart fluid acrylic paints in various shades of green and added some thin crackle glaze on the tips of the branches, but it must have been too thin as the crackle is so fine it can't be seen lol. (We live and learn don't we?). I lightly sponged some white over the top and when it was dry I added some sparkly embossing powder down the edges. Before I added them to the base I painted and altered some wooden and metal snowflakes for embellishments.

 The base was given a coat of dark green paint and then a coat of Americana crackle medium. When it was dry I painted with decoart lace chalk paint and the beautiful crackles appeared. It didn't take long before it was dry and I could glue on some bells, cones, berries and natural materials with a couple of altered wooden shapes.

Although I didn't finish embellishing the trees at the back I did make sure it was all painted and some of the base embellishments added to it.

To finish it off I added a Tim Holtz Christmas flash card.

I hope you are enjoying the challenge at Country View Crafts and maybe you have entered something - don't forget there is a £20 voucher for the winner each month.

Only one more week to go and it will be Christmas Eve which is where our family Christmas begins. We all get together with a few close friends and have a meal together and share a Christmas Eve mini present. Everyone comes to us Christmas Eve and Christmas day and then to my son and daughter in law's for Boxing day, I just love this special time together.

Happy Holidays as our American friends say.

hugs Brenda xxx

Sunday 13 December 2015

Secret Santa for AVJ

Gosh I can't believe it is a year since the wonderfully talented Creative Guides did a Secret Santa gift exchange and here we are again. This year my 'picked out of the hat' recipient is the lovely Alison (Butterfly) and I had several ideas of things to make but in the end decided on a canvas board on which I hope I have included some of her favourite things - grungy vintage embellishments, texture and the colours blue and brown together. Mmmm do I know her well enough?

I made notes on this post as I was designing and making and you can probably see from the way they are random and with no cohesion to them how my mind works.

On the chipboard heart I used my rusted paint technique using gesso, sand paste and rusty brown media fluid acrylic paints and when dry I applied a layer of transparent crackle glaze and when that layer was dry I rubbed in a little broken china distress ink. You can just see the tinted blue veins. The letter B was ine of my finds in a bits box and the perfect colour. It looks to me as if I used Tim's rusted enamel technique.

The stars were die-cut using greyboard, lightly painted with white gesso so that not all of the surface is covered and when dry ground espresso distress ink is rubbed over. When the ink has soaked into the exposed chipboard I used a babywipe to take some of the ink off the gessoed areas. When that was dry I pushed each star into the faded jeans distress ink pad and lightly dabbed off some of the ink wit a babywipe. Later I again covered these with a layer of transparent crackle paste, inked them and flicked them over with white gesso. 

The largest star has been bound with rusty wire and used to hang the 'altered' disc. The rosette has been die-cut using one of Tim's strip dies and inked with walnut stain. Note also the rusty Eiffel Tower and Paris postage stamp, these just appeared  in front of me when looking through one of my 'bits' boxes, they seemed a poignant reminder to me of how strong and courageous the people in Paris were as the recent awful terrorist bombings were unfolding, I couldn't help but add them to the canvas.

The background of the shrine is a piece of card on which I had applied layers of black texture paste through a stencil and applied layers and drips of fluid media acrylics. (Textured chippy paint).  The pediment was gessoed, dipped in faded jeans, broken china and gathered twigs distress inks before being given a coat of transparent crackle paste, When dry I sanded bits of the edges and blended in walnut stain.

To create the texture on the frame I covered it with tissue paper using matte medium allowing it to crinkle and left it to dry. I sanded the edges and painted with cobalt blue hue, phthalo blue, prussian blue and paynes grey. When that was dry I ribbed in some raw umber around the edges and finished with some dry brushing  using titanium white and titan buff and a coat of gloss varnish. The scalloped art part was given a coat of texture paste and whilst still wet pressed into the craft mat and lifted to create a veined look. When dry it was lightly painted with white gesso and again when dry was rubbed over with some faded jeans distress ink and then blended with vintage photo. I just kept adding more inks until I was happy with it and tied it with rusty wire.

The backing board is a piece of watercolour board which has been stamped with black archival and one of Tim's ledger stamps then DecoArt white crackle paste applied through the gothic stencil and left to crackle on it's own. Once fully dried I dipped in blue and brown distress inks. 

The metal pieces were painted with picket fence distress paint, left to dry slightly then rubbed over with my finger to remove the paint leaving it in the depressed letters. To grunge then up a bit I added prussian blue, acrylic, indigo treasure gold and some sail boat blue and espresso alcohol inks. I found a small rusted metal star and added it to a rusty disc, the number two was left over when I made my antique French number plates 

The arrow was painted with prussian blue, rubbed over some indigo and pewter treasure gold and then more raw umber and paynes grey paint added to it. The piece of film strip seemed to be the perfect layering piece for it. The girls are from Tim's found relatives, I cut them out, inked the edges and added a little broken china and faded jeans distress markers to bring them in more with the blue tones. 

You can also see a couple of my rusty wooden cogs made for an AVJ DI post ages ago, look at the photo below to see how I was able to add them to the layering.

By adding the scalloped art part to the centre of the shrine it meant that the ledge had a gap left either end, perfect for those cogs.

I hope I've given you an insight to the techniques and products used to make the canvas. At the time of drafting this post I am also wrapping this carefully to get it in the post to Alison - now I just hope she likes it.

As part of this fabulous gift exchange experience with the Creative Guides the amazing Tracy was unfortunate lucky enough (lol) to pull my name out of the hat and inside the well wrapped parcel that arrived in the post was this gorgeous Christmas shrine.

It is the most gorgeous little bit of altered art although I don't know that I can really call it that because Tracy made it all from scratch using wood for the base and Tim dies for the shrine. I just love all the additions and snowy effects, it really is beautiful Tracy, thank you so much, it has been displayed in my dining room since I received it a couple of weeks ago and will look wonderful with all my other Christmas d├ęcor when I get it out. To see Tracy's post pop over to her blog, I'm sure there will be more photos from her and probably a description of how she put it together.

Thanks for stopping by today to take a look at my secret santa presents and if you would like to see ALL of them on display then click here on A Vintage Journey to be transported over and see what amazing projects the team came up with. You will not be disappointed as I am the lucky one who has seen them already.

Enjoy the rest of the run up to Christmas and the wonderful atmosphere of the festive season.

hugs Brenda xxx

Monday 7 December 2015

Vintage Collage Recipe Christmas Card Series #4

Fill your Christmas Card Box retro style - Pt 4

This card making series is really helping me have plenty of cards to send out early rather than late and in a rush. Today the focus is on the Tim Holtz ephemera pack and using the photo booth snaps to add an image and although they are not Christmassy pics they seem to fit well with the papers and ephemera pieces.

Mostly Tim Holtz
Merriment paper stash
Festive ephemera pack
Photobooth images of children
Christmastime flash cards
Dies - Holiday Words Script. movers and shapers mini bell
Miscellaneous - American seam binding, gold frame (outside scraps left from the frame cutting for the previous set of cards)

Gather all the elements you want to put together.
  The fork? well I wanted little bows to add to the bells and this was the quickest way to do it using the american seam binding. 

Glitter on the bell gave the whole card some extra dimension and interest.

The gold frames came later when I was putting the cards together, they were left from a previous set of cards I made. Waste not want not eh?

Don't you think these have a retro feel to them?

Thanks for stopping by today. I hope you have your card making well in hand - I also have to buy cards as I seem to send so many out. However this year I am reducing the number and sending ecards  to some friends and contributing some money to charity.

Take care.

hugs Brenda xxx

Friday 4 December 2015

A Vintage Christmas

It's the first Friday in December and we are now on the countdown to Christmas and this is the bit I love, getting the decorations out of the loft, father and son going to the forest to choose trees for our homes, granny and granddaughters baking Christmas flapjacks as part of the family traditions (which are being passed on), the buying and wrapping of presents and the house filled with lights. It's such a special time in the Brown households.

With all of this in mind I had great fun creating my contribution for Annie's challenge at A Vintage Journey, called 'A Vintage Christmas' which she describes as - 'Use your dies, stamps, rub ons- anything you choose to create a Vintage Christmas card, home decor piece or gift for someone special.' Well mine is a gift for our home and will be displayed on the sideboard with other special decorations over the Christmas period.

I had the idea of what I wanted this project to look like but it took me some time to choose specific images to fit on the sides of each side panel so I started by die-cutting and glittering four stars to have one on each side.

The first of the movers and shapers dies I used was the mini skate and I die-cut two of them and used gesso, silver paint and distress ink before making holes in them to sew the lacing mechanism and hanging a small bell from them.

Using one of Tim's duo snowflakes I painted it with bundled sage distress paint and spritzed it with water then dried it. I rubbed hickory smoke DI on the raised areas and then some glue sprinkling with rock candy distress glitter. The tidings token was painted with the bundled sage paint, rubbed off and edged with treasure copper whilst the die-cut 25 was gessoed, dabbed with forest moss distress stain and sprinkled with rock candy distress glitter.

I love the look of the finished mini lantern which was rubbed with raw umber and silver decoart acrylic paint and edged with treasure gold. The little bands were cut from greyboard and painted with paynes grey acrylic paint. The Christmas muse token was painted with picket fence distress paint, rubbed with treasure gold and blended with ground espresso DI. The foliage was also altered with paints and alcohol inks.

The mini bells went through various layers of paints and crackle mediums before I was happy with them and I tied them together with another altered Christmas token and some ribbon.

Here is a close up of the crackle effect on the box which was gessoed, painted with raw umber and given a coat of weathered wood crackle medium before being painted again with decoart lace chalk paint,

Here are the four sides once put together.

As always I carried on adding to it the next day and in the next photos you will see I added some snow details.

Don't you just love Tim's remnant rubs? They went onto the bells and the crackled glass bottle so easily.

Here are the four panels once the whole block had been completed.

And all four of them together.

I hope we will see you over at a Vintage Journey this month with a Vintage Christmas themed project.

But just before I go I thought I would show you some of the photos from our family weekend at Longleat Centre Parcs. We had the most fabulous few days in our own winter wonderland even though the weather was damp and mild it didn't spoil the excitement and enjoyment.

Now to get my own winter wonderland sorted at home lol.

Have a wonderful weekend.

hugs Brenda xxx