Friday, 27 May 2016

Road trip card

I got the new TH vintage cars stamps recently and lo and behold a couple of days later the amazing Pamellia from My Little Craft Things posted a fabulous shabby vintage car card which totally inspired and motivated me to get my stamps inked up straight away. I stamped the whole set and the new newsprint background not quite sure where I was gonna go with this one but after watching Pamellia's video I knew I wanted dimensional layers. I love the new vintage designs but once I was into the card making process I realised all the cars faced the same way which is a little disappointing when trying to create interest, so I got out an old Crafty Individuals stamp and used that too.

I was also inspired by my great friend Astrid who the very same day had a post about using up 'old stock' that has collected in the craft room and not been used, so out came some old paper stacks.

Tim's new cog thinlits came out to play too giving me some more of the masculine feel and interest .....

.... a street name, number plate and clock from a Tim stash ....

... and some washi tape build the collaged and dimensional look.

The background has been dipped in pumice stone DI and all of the papers have distressed edges inked with ground espresso.

I quite like the look and the effects and huge thanks to Pamellia and Astrid for inspiring me and helping me get my mojo back.

I always appreciate your visit thank you for taking the time to stop by.

hugs Brenda xxx

Monday, 23 May 2016

MIxology news and CVC workshop news.

Well if you saw my Face Book post last Wednesday you will already know my exciting news. The amazing Andy Skinner has asked me to be one of the teachers at Mixology in Coventry on the 19tyh and 20th November this year and I am still pinching myself as it's a dream come true. I will be sharing the day with the fabulous Mark Gould so that he and I will both do two half days each. Now I'm here to tell you that the booking is open for this retreat but I believe that sales are going really fast and if you wanted to come along you need to get in quick to see if there are any spaces left. (Click the Mixology link above).

I just got to get my head round a project and there are lots of ideas floating about, so that's good seeing as my mojo has been missing for a few weeks and half a day brings the potential down for me to overdo things too.

At the moment I am working on my Country View Crafts workshop project for July and on Saturday created this grungy, shabby crackle using DecoArt weathered wood medium with their chalk paints and media acrylics.

This is going to be a beach hut project so you can see it's pink, shabby with touches of vibrant colour but still weathered and vintagy. I'll let you see more when I've finished it.

Thanks for stopping by and for all the lovely comments you leave me.

Have a great week.

hugs Brenda xxx

Stencil challenge at CVC

The stencil challenge at Country View Crafts is still running and you have till the 31st to get as entry in and to join in the amazing blog hop. I have made one of my 5 x 7 media boards as my second DT sample using two different stencils on the background.

It all began with a dot stencil and texture paste ....

... some decoart paints spritzed and dried ....

... another stencil with acrylic paint .....

..... and a focal image and rusted frame.

The flowers were left over from my reverse canvas workshop and went will on here. You can also see a couple of other elements tucked in - a fleur de lys and a Paris clock.

Thanks for stopping by, I will be back in half an hour with some news I announced on Face Book last week and a sneak peek of a new technique I have called weathered shabby cackle wood that I will be teaching at my CVC workshop in July.

Have a great week.

hugs Brenda xxxx

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Shabby vintage burlap panel

Ok so I've started getting back into designing and making at last, would you believe prior to making this small burlap panel on Sunday I had only made one project since before I went on holiday and that was five and a half weeks ago, eek how did that happen?

I found the panel in one of my ikea box units and the background had already been done with what looks like white gesso, torn TH paper with a gesso wash and some crackle paint through Tim's stars stencil.

The small star echoes the background and is an altered gem using decoart media paints and the vintage photograph is a free download I keep on my PC ....

 .... I used alcohol ink on a fragment to help make the face the focal point of the project.

 The quote is stamped from Simple Sayings ....

..... and hemp string tied round to add more interest.

I almost forgot the torn snippet of the brown card vintage lace.

Yay, I'm back in the saddle and starting to get the bug back again.

Thanks for staying with me and for popping by.

hugs hugs Brenda xxxx

Monday, 16 May 2016

Workshop photos

I had the most fabulous day on Saturday teaching my 'Journalling for Success' workshop for Country View Crafts and using the fabulous DecoArt media paints. I know when I get into a rut, have lost my mojo (like now) or just need an idea to point me in a new direction I have found my journal recipes so useful. It gets me going by getting something down on that blank page and after a few steps I have completely forgotten I have a recipe to follow and my muse takes me off to explore completely different avenues. These are my first pages using recipe 1 and recipe 2 ....



... and then second pages making new choices for each step which created these designs but still using the same recipes.



If you fancy taking a look at the photos from the day then please pop over to the Country View Crafts Project Blog.

Thanks for stopping by, I'm hoping to get back into some designing and making this week so there should be some new projects from me very soon.

have a great week.

hugs Brenda xxx

Friday, 6 May 2016

Sew Special at A Vintage Journey

Wow, it's the first Friday in May and we are gathering at A Vintage Journey for Jenny's 'Sew Special' challenge. I so enjoyed designing and making for this theme, it's one that's been off my radar for a very long time yet used to be one of my favourites and as I had a canvas with tissue wrap on it ready to be used, I went for it. Gathering all my sewing elements and stamps together I began to get ideas in my head and had to start making choices and decide what would go together.

This started it's life whilst teaching my 'Collection of 3' workshop recently and is made from a piece of canvas from a canvas pad. I began by dipping it into broken china and dried marigold distress inks and spritzing it with water to move the paints around and then heat dried it.

 Later I used a stencil and white crackle paste to create a textured design and when it was dry I sprayed on some broken china and tea dye distress stains, spritzed a little with water, let them drip and merge a bit and dried it, then used the stencil and ground espresso distress crayon to create some darker patches of the pattern.

Dress Form
Although the Hot Picks sewing/haberdashery stamps have been out a long time they remain my most favourite images for this theme. I used HP1215EZ for the dress form and cut it out after stamping on card. I took Wendy Vecchi's cornflower blue EP and covered the whole shape, the a layer of thick, clear EP before using Wendy's tea Rose EP but localising it to the body form only. Next I stamped over it with ground espresso DI and covered it with walnut stain distress powder and heated it so that the powder created a mottled outline, then I edged with coffee archival ink, heated it, covered with versamark and the clear EP again before stamping into it with the coffee archival ink. It created somewhat smudged look but it's grungy and distressed which was what I was aiming for.


Sewing Machine
This was a chipboard piece I found in my 'sewing' box, I covered it with versamark and walnut stain distress EP and when cool I blended hickory smoke Di all over, then sanded the edges and blended them with ground espresso. Next I used the clear, thick EP, flicking a lot of it off before heat drying and then blended over black soot when it was cool. To finish off I stamped a design in versamark and used gold EP and did the edges the same.

Thread winder and coat hanger
More chipboard pieces covered in picket fence DI, stamped text with black soot then covered with fine, clear EP. Edges sanded and blended with ground espresso before winding thread onto the card.

Ruler border
For this embellishment I used a piece of off white card (Marianne Designs stamping card) and followed Sheena's faux leather technique but mixed it up to make it fit my project. Once I got to the stage where the softened and flexible card had been put through Tim's embossing folder I then carried on in my way.

When it was fully dry I dipped and spritzed (with water) using dried marigold DI, dried it, repeated with just a little vintage photo and again when dry I rubbed over both broken china and ground espresso ink pads to get my aged look.

These were simply scratched with a prima distressing tool, blended with vintage photo and ground espresso DIs and thread, hessian and lace added to them.

I put the smallest, which was cut in half to provide a flat back, on the canvas frame, you can also see the finished thread card with needle embellishment given a rusted look.

The Butterfly
This was also a demo/teaching left over  and made using Tim's layered butterfly die and embossing folder, distress embossing powder, distress inks and gloss varnish. You will see on the finished canvas that I added lots more ground espresso DI round the edges.

Here's the body when it was finished with a small dress form shaped stamped with cotton reel tops and a rusty scissors embellishment added.

The canvas
This was given a layer of music score tissue wrap before being dipped in watery dried marigold and picket fence distress paints and edged with vintage photo and ground espresso.

So there we are - my contribution towards the 'sew special' challenge. I hope you will be able to join us where there is a prize this month from Calico Craft parts. Have fun.

With much warmer this week here in the UK we have been attacking the back garden and getting it sorted out for the summer - new turf has been laid, fence painted and shrubs and tubs to be finished. We're getting there.

Enjoy your weekend with whatever you have planned.

hugs Brenda xxx

Sunday, 1 May 2016

Stencil challenge for CVC and Blog Hop

Welcome to May and a new challenge at Country View Crafts which is to use a stencil, but before I get to the project May is a very special month.

This month alongside our Challenge, we are also running a Blog Hop with a Sizzix Big Shot Machine & Die Bundle as the prize. To enter, you must be a Follower of our Challenge Blog and Hop along to each of our Design Team Members Blogs and leave a comment. We will still be running our normal monthly challenge and those who link their Use A Stencil projects will also be entered into our £20 Voucher draw. The Winners will be picked at random in early June. So hop on over to Christine's 1st Project - Use A Stencil and follow the trail to all the blogs. If you have arrived from hazel and are following the links I have added a link for you to get to Corrie who follows me or you can get to any others on the list.
Brenda (me)

Right back to my project.
There is a story to these notebook covers - they began their life whilst I was demoing and teaching the gungy notebook (see post here) and I had a vision in my head of some shabby French design, pretty, feminine, with rusted elements on it. It's not often I have this sort of picture in my head but what a disaster, so much so I didn't even want to photograph the boards. I just left them till the next day and gave them a coat of gesso to see if I could transform them and I did.

These are the boards after the coat of gesso and they still look dirty and not at all what I wanted, the only good thing is that some of Andy's mega crackle still showed through almost like crocodile skin.

Out came the titanium white paint and I daubed, spritzed and dripped layers and soon the murky layer was fading into the background and I began to like the shabbier look. At this point I just gave it a coat of matte medium to seal it.

I added a very watery wash of cadmium red hue and raw umber mixed just around the edges and splattered with the red and brown separately.  I thought I had finished them by sanding the edges and blending on ground espresso DI but then decided to stamp one of Andy's texture stamps inked in blue violet archival and add some stenciling using Decoart's white crackle paste.

Now we've got more of that shabby look I was trying to achieve. The stencil with white cracks brought the boards to life and at last I felt I could add the embellishments.

The Eiffel tower and fleur de lys are wooden pieces and originally I gave them the painted rusted look but they that was too overpowering for the design and composition so I gave then a coat of white crackle paste which was too thin so when it was dry I painted on weathered wood, gave it a blast of the heat gun and then added the white crackle paste again. Yay, fabulous crackle and seen more clearly with a light wash of transparent red iron oxide, quinacridone red and paynes grey which has given it that mauve tinge.

The frame and wooden letter pieces were given my rusty paint layers and then I painted on some transparent crackle paint to the frame and when dry rubbed in some raw umber antiquing cream. I let that sit for a while then rubbed some of it off with a babywipe, sanded the edges and blended in ground espresso distress ink. 

I wanted something for inside the frame so I got out my vintage images box and found this printed French postcard which fitted perfectly.


I found the flower already made up from a spotty patterned paper and added white crackle paste to shabby it. The border was also in my bits box so I gave it the same painted layers as the spine and sanded it to distress it. The bow was made from a spare piece already coloured with distress inks.

These random pieces are from the chevron frameworks die cut in acrylic packaging, they were actually on the floor discarded from another 'playtime', once I had added red pepper alcohol ink they found a place on the front cover with the other embellishments.

The spine is made of dry wall tape, I painted it with a mix of  red cadmium hue and quinacridone magenta and then blended red iron oxide and raw umber over it. The texture is one of those texture stamps by Andy Skinner and the final layer was a random wash of paynes grey.

And so it came together ....

... I like the back cover just as it is with the stencilling providing texture, depth and interest ....

... and looks striking with the deep red spine.

These notebooks I am using are actually A5 sketchbooks from Hobbycraft and the quality of the paper is fabulous.

So the moral of the story is, when you have something you are ready to trash, keep hold for a while and have a go at altering it and don't forget your stencils, adding gorgeous crackled texture to my boards made them kook so much better - well I think so anyway.

Thanks for stopping by and taking a look. Perhaps you will join us at Country View Challenges but even if you don't I'd recommend you pop over to the blog to see what amazing inspiration has come from the rest of the team and also take your chance at winning the Sizzix bundle by joining in the Blog Hop. Good luck.

Take care and have a great weekend.

hugs Brenda xxx