Monday, 29 May 2017

Crafting from the Sofa #5 - missing my frappuccino

I was sooooo missing my Starbucks caramel frappuccinos and when I realised I had some stamped mini blueprints in the media pad I had put in one of my supply boxes beside the sofa it reminded me and made me long for one (I have to say since writing this post both Ken and great friend Nikki have brought me one). But as I couldn't drive to get one there was no other option to record how I felt.

For the background I dipped my media paper in pistachio, worn lipstick and spiced marmalade watery distress oxides, when dry this was followed with a dip in peeled paint . But I wanted it to look darker so next came faded jeans and walnut stain, blended with my finger and then a couple of dips in faded jeans only.

I drew out the Starbucks logo and painted it with watercolour paints using my little Sakura travel box, but dimwit here didn't look at which way to paint and the light and dark colours and reversed them, but hey ho we have artistic license don't we?

I took one of the stamped frappe images and painted it again using the watercolours.

So here we are with it assembled, I had a little box of peg stamps to make my own title and cut out some of the words from Tim's stamp to use as well. I also painted a small piece of the media paper with the same dark green and used Tim's punch to add the stars. I have loads of the real Starbucks corrugated sleeves in a drawer so it was easy to cut and add my own.

Nothing left but to put it in the journal, which is getting filled nicely.

So you've probably worked out that I regularly pop over to our local Starbucks and grab a caramel frappuccino, they know me in there lol.  With 6 weeks and no driving it's up to hubby or my friends to keep me supplied - thanks again Nikki.

Thanks for taking another stop on the 'Crafting from the Sofa' series and for all the lovely comments.

Take care.

hugs Brenda xxx

Friday, 26 May 2017

Crafting from the Sofa #3 - layered tags panel

I am still playing with the distress oxides as I love the results and they are easy enough to use with a craft mat on a lap tray. I have decided that the double pages in my Midori notebook are going to have similar colours to them so after #4 is finished I shall go back to #2 and make another vintage one and mount beside it. Here's #3. Please note this post was written on the 11th May, one week after I had broken my leg and scheduled for today.

Ok you have probably realised I am writing this blog post as I complete stages to the project, so this is #3 and the background was created by dipping media paper in watery vintage photo, worn lipstick and fired brick distress oxides, dried off and dipped in the same colours again. For some reason I decided I wanted it a much richer red so it got a coupe of dips in fired brick on its own and when dry splattered with walnut stain, dried off with a piece of kitchen roll and splattered again.  I thought I had photographed this stage but I can't find it, sorry.
I then gathered some tags and started looking for elements to add.

You know when you have limited supplies and are not able to go looking for something else I decided to make my own focal elements and tore some scraps of leftover media papers and drew some flower bases and stems to go with them and cut them out ....

.... and started arranging the bits.

I cut the panel to size and started putting the layers together with the mini attacher.

I really liked the way it was going together.

By the time I'd added it to the cvc flower journal I used remnant rubs which actually express how I feel even with a broken leg and not being allowed to move off the sofa.

Thanks for stopping by and for all the lovely messages I have received by various means - they really mean a lot and help to keep me buoyant.

Avoid the next bit if you hate injuries .............

I had to have my cast changed yesterday as my leg was swelling a bit, just look at the amazing colours one week later.

I also saw the x-rays and where the breaks are, a spiral one in the lower shaft of the fibular and another small one in the posterior malleolus which is the very end of the tibia, clever aren't I?

But I'm staying positive and have a wonderful hubby, family, friends and neighbours who are looking after me.

hugs Brenda xxx

Monday, 22 May 2017

Gardening cabbage card

Hi It's my turn to share a project over at Country View Crafts Project Blog and I've used a new set of stamps and a stencil from Scrapcosy at PaperArtsy.

More details and photos are available on the CVC Project Blog if you are interested.

I thought I'd also show you me getting my cast changed last tuesday, but it will be off again on wednesday when I visit the fracture clinic again. Last week the consultant confirmed I have a broken ankle (not leg). He frightened me to begin with as he talked about maybe needing an operation but after having some weight bearing x-rays I came home with a full plaster cast and instructions to move around more and to try putting a little weight on it, but he still wants to see me again on Wednesday for another check up. So although I was hoping to get back on my feet quite quickly the news could have been worse, I've just got to take next steps he's told me to do and I'm taking it all in my stride lol. Just gotta keep going!! 

The old cast coming off.

The swelling and the bruises are going down.

This time I have a fibreglass weight bearing cast put on .....

.... and have a little shoe to wear with it lol.

Thanks for stopping by.

hugs Brenda xxx

Friday, 19 May 2017

Crafting from the Sofa #2 - fearless and independent panel

I'm back with another journal panel created whilst I've been keeping my leg up with my broken ankle. I blogged all about my predicament on the last post if you missed it.

Just a few steps to outline the processes this went through -

1. I dipped 250 gm media paper into very watery wash of vintage photo and walnut stain doxides and let it dry (I didn't have a heat gun at this stage of my sofa crafting.

2.I repeated step one three more times to build up layers.

3. Still using the vintage photo doxide I stencilled on some circles .......

4. ........ over that I used the walnut stain and stamped some more circular designs and splattered some watery ws with a brush.

In my supplies I had grabbed some collage bits, vintage photos, some small paper pads and punched circles and gathered these bits together.

Here's how I am managing on my lap.

When I came to make up the panel I found and added the triangular bunting and also added the Small Talk sticker.

I'm really happy to have such a wonderful hobby and 'job' creating what I like.

Thanks for stopping by and for all your lovely comments and well wishes, I so appreciate them. Blogging friends really are the best.

Including these two lovelies who have visited me this week. Nikki from Addicted to Art popped over to see me on Monday bringing me a much needed caramel frappuccino (wait till you see my journal page I did last week).

Later she sat die-cutting, some for me and some for her lol.

Then yesterday I had a lovely visit from Jane, you'll know her from Jane's Journal, Jane brought with her stamped sentiments for my journal, ones that I don't own, some lovely flowers and her expertise. As a physiotherapist by trade she was able to teach me how to get around only partially bearing weight on my broken ankle, how to get up and down the stairs and also how to get up and down the steps at my front door without any help. Yay freedom, I can get around much better now and what a revelation.

Jane is also a keen gardener so she popped up the greenhouse to check on my cuttings and seeds and watered them for me.

Thank you lovely ladies for taking time out of your week to come and see me, I really appreciate it.

And thanks to all of you who are here now stopping by to see what I've been up to and if you have time to leave a comment - thank you for that too.

Have a great weekend everyone.
hugs Brenda xxx

Monday, 15 May 2017

Crafting from the sofa #1 - Wildflowers panel

I have a new, hopefully short, series of projects specifically as the title says. Here's my project today but please be aware I'm not at my desk and I certainly haven't got many supplies around me ........

I'm having to craft on the sofa and if you're not friends with me on Facebook you may not have heard that I broke two bones in my right leg two weeks ago. I've been walking three or four times a week since January trying to keep fit(ish) and certainly didn't expect to take a tumble on a crumbly path and head straight down a bank towards a ditch. See those two small bush stems growing up? On the way down my right foot got caught on them and my weight went straight through that leg - ouch! 

So now I am in a cast and during the day my leg has to be kept up and I can't put any weight on it.

But with a very helpful, sensitive and 'tired' hubby (yes tired running around after me bless him), I have been able to gather a few supplies around me and have been determined to try and keep myself creating and making, albeit it simply.

No tutorial today, I just got out the journal I have been making for this months Country View Crafts challenge sample that was published in the last post and decided to do a section in it and call it 'Crafting from the Sofa' hence the title of this post.  I have been making a few more panels and will be recording them here at Bumblebees and Butterflies.

This was made using some media paper dipped into watery distress oxides, Tim Holtz stencil and butterfly stamp and some of the lovely wildflowers that had been cut for another project and not used.
The sentiment from Tim's Small Talk stickers is just perfect - I'm luckily not in pain and being in the conservatory during the day means I can look out on the garden. Yes I would like to be out in it - but hopefully it won't be long.

Here's the panel added to the midori notebook in the journal.

The photos were taken on my iphone 7+ and adjusted in Snapseed before importing over to my laptop and resized in a very early version of Photoshop Elements, but the process worked.

I have an appointment at the fracture clinic tomorrow and this cast will be removed and my leg reassessed as to what the next step is (excuse the pun). I'll let you know soon.

Thanks for stopping by.

hugs Brenda xxx

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Flower Journal #2 for CVC

You may remember the covers I made for this journal at the beginning of the 'Flower Power' challenge at Country View Challenges and I promised to show you the finished journal for my second sample. So here it is.

Before you move on I need to tell  you -

Yes really this is a very long post - so grab a cuppa if you want all the details or just scroll through to get all the visuals.

I wanted to make a more flexible cover than the mountboard ones I have been making so I die-cut two out of 300gm card knowing that it would get very worn if this journal is handled a lot. I used extra strong red line tape to overlap the edge pieces of the spine to put the journal together.

Then I cut a complete piece using 12 x 12 core'dinations paper 10 1/8 inches wide and 8 3/4 inches in length and scored at 4 1/2, 4 7/8, 5 1/4 and 5 5/8 on the longest side.

I needed to choose the way of securing the two together and decided on double sided tapes rather than a wet glue which would make it crumple and distort if it got too damp, glue sticks are great for smaller jobs but I didn't think it would hold these together for very long. I even thought about spray adhesive and maybe that would have worked, but good strong tape on the edges and double sided sellotape in the middle was the way I went.

Now things often don't work the way I hoped they would and I ended up with the covers not quite meeting ......

...  - no use worrying about it, I just trimmed the edges and re-rounded the corners 

Rather than have elastic showing on the outside for this journal I thought I would try a spine insert - again I had to think about strength so that the elastic wouldn't tear the holes as they were being stretched for the insert booklets and pages to be slid in and out.
I had just bought some tyvek papers and fabric to experiment with because they are very strong and non tearable and though this would be a good substrate to use. It took me a bit of thinking time to work out how I wanted the spine to look and how it would be secured into the journal, I decided to incorporate it into an inside page that would have pockets in it for keeping bits and bobs like ephemera from outings etc.
Taking a piece of A4 card I cut it to the same length as the outer cover but the width will be narrower at 8 1/4 inches. Score it this time at 3 1/2, 3 7/8, 4 1/4 and 4 5/8 inches. Before creasing the scores adhere a piece of tyvek (or maybe fabric?) at the back to cover the spine area. I made mine 1 1/2 wide and 8 1/4 inches long.- remember this is to strengthen the spine and stop the holes from tearing (once we have punched them). This time I used decou-page glue and put it under a box to dry.

Whilst I was waiting I cut two inside covers and adhered those on .....

.... and when the tyvek was dry I scored a half inch away from the last score line on both sides to create the space for sticking this insert to the journal cover ....

.... and made a couple of pockets and started a couple of thin Midori tags (I'm calling them that because they are long and thin lol).

I tied in three pieces of elastic to hold the inserts, they need to be tied so that they are taut enough to hold the papers in, you can see here that they pull at the card and see how it looks crumpled. Glad I used the tyvek paper to strengthen it all, there's no tearing at the holes at all.

I used super strong double sided tape up to the furthest score lines we made and in fact after I took this photo I added more to cover the elastic and whole of the spine. Once in and a ruler rubbed along the creases and it left to flatten under a very heavy box it adhered beautifully flat.

Here you can see the flaps.

Front covers on.

These are some Midori style notebooks I have made simply with good quality photocopy paper, grey card and some patterned papers. Usually I use a long armed stapler to create booklets but I decided not to bind these pages together but to left them unattached and just held in place with the elastic. This serves my purpose better because I will be able to add and take out pages and be so much more flexible in the way this journal goes together.  To see more inspiration for Midori notebooks see my Pinterest page here, and to see more junk journals see my page here. I've learned not to add too many pages because a) they take a long time to fill!!!! and b) the journals can then become too fat by the time you've added all your ephemera and bits and pieces.

I used oxides on some media paper to create additional pages for interest.

I also searched out some patterned papers - again for interest.

Here's one of the oxide pages with a folded envelope and the midori style notebook.

The folded envelope creates two pockets for putting memorabilia etc in. I will indeed be making my own pockets for things when I start filling it.

 This shows two additional pages bound together with elastic which allows me to get five inserts.

I made the elastic into a band to bind them together.

So let's look at how the inserts went in and see if you can see how I got five of them with only three elastics.
Midori notebook with folded envelope and oxides page on the left hand elastic.

The same again on the right hand elastic.

Next come the pages that have been bound together with the additional elastic band. They are the ones with the patterned papers inside and have been inserted under the middle band.

I've pulled them apart here so you can see what the elastics look like.

To finish off I added the final notebook under the middle elastic.

It's really simple when you know how so here's a link to follow to see how you can do it.

Lastly came something to wrap around the journal to keep it closed when not in use or being read.  This was a piece of torn fabric and I sewed some seam binding onto it and then coloured it with the worn lipstick and iced spruce oxides.

Now this is what I gathered first of all decorate the front of the journal. They'd all been inked or painted to bring them into similar colour tones - the lighting when taking the photo made them look strikingly different but I thought they'd be fine when added to the journal itself. THEY DIDN'T!

So then I played with the Tim Holtz flower garden stamps - trying several ways to stamp and colour .........

.... I even had three ready to go with little pink glass cabochons in the centre.

But no I still wasn't happy and cut out the flowers I used from a very old piece of 12 x 12 paper. Oh yes! I loved the contrast and the much more vintage appeal - yay - sold!!!  I sprayed the covers with spray sealer first before playing with the decoupage pieces. 

I even cut a piece for the back too.

Very simple embellishing as the striking flowers say it all for me ......

.... but there was a little bee stamp on the paper and I had to use that now didn't I?

There's lots of decorating still to be done but I like to do that as I am filling up the journal then the embellishing and decoration fits to whatever I am adding. I have made a little start just to get it going ...

 .... but the basics are all in place and it feels gorgeous to hold in the hands. I've always got the flowers I discarded to use inside, in fact I've punched flowers from the paper left of the 12 x 12 and with the other bits and pieces I have a little embellishment pack ready to go.

 Phew. I can tell you this journal took me FAR longer than it should just because of all the phaffing with the embellishments - but that's me, yes I over think things, yes I walk away and come back to it later, yes I um and err but at the end of the day it's just gotta look right or I'm not happy. But I had great fun along the way lol.

Thanks for getting here and staying with me and if you have time for a comment - even if it's only one word (a nice word please!xx) I thank you in advance.

Have a lovely end to the week and a great weekend.

hugs Brenda xxx