Thursday, 7 June 2018


Morning all

"What a strange title!" do I hear you say? Well it's one of the words on the stamp set "Perfect Words" by France Papillon for Illusionary artists produced by Chocolate Baroque. It so seemed to fit this tag.

The tag itself was started as a challenge to myself - after seeing the challenge set by the Mixed up Magazine blog design team. Bold colour!! Now for those that know me - this isn't something that comes naturally. I prefer to keep to the muted tones of black and brown. Getting out of your comfort zone once in a while has to be good to expand the creativity of anyone. So with this in mind - I started on this tag.

The tag itself is from the "Tagtastic1" and an element from "Flaming hearts" - both produced by Tando Creative.

The heart shape first because I knew I needed curing time. the main heart shape painted red, then crackle paint and then yellow. The heart frame attached and Decoart ultra thick poured into the hole. Leave alone and don't touch. More on this later.

The main tag
A layer of white gesso. The neat greyboard can be painted on directly but would have reduced the brightness of the colours. The using a soft gel medium to increase flow time more and Decoart media fluids I mixed with up a storm on the tag.
Patience - let it dry.

Stenciling and doodling
adding the stamped word matted onto some sheer orange fabric

There's a smaller tag here to mount the heart onto. The flames are orange and coated with a crackle medium 

The wings are made using hot wax into an Artyco Crafts mould. Coated with perfect pearls before Decoart gold interference paint.

Outside of my comfort zone - for sure. Do I like it? Yes I do. Will I come back into this zone again? - for sure - just don't ask when.

I'd like to enter this tag into the challenge at
Make It Mixed Media challenge - Bold Colour

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

AIW Mini book

Morning all.
I hope you're all enjoying the unseasonable sunshine, I know I am.

Today I'd like to share a little mini album I made for a swap, held in a facebook group I'm part of . The brief for the swap was "no more than 6 inches" but can be any project you can dream up. Tag, ATC, Card, Altered item, Book ..... anything. Well this little book measures 6" x about 4" but it is also quite deep. The recipient has received it now, so I can share.

Many pictures follow so I hope you'll bear with me.
The papers are all from Vectoria Designs from their Alice in Wonderland collection. Other bits and bobs from stash. The bookplate on the spine is from Tando Creative.




inside cover with page one
you can also see the string on each of the inserts between the main pages for private journaling. this is possible because the base of each page is card folded to form a double open ended sheet. One end is adhered to the spine page holders leaving the other end open.

inside front cover with a concertina file with ribbon/buckle closure

opening page one

opening page one totally to show more tag space

pages two and three. both tri fold pages with tags
following four photos show the pockets and tags and journaling space inside these two pages

all the openings on pages two and three

pages four and five

page four - a double pocket page with tags

page five opened with belly band for more tags etc. this has a magnetic closure

 page six and inside back cover

page six - a waterfall with magnetic closure

tuck pocket under the waterfall
 tag inside the back cover pocket

A lot of pictures I know but I am unable to do a video of it so this has to make do.
Thank you for staying with me through this journey

I'd like to submit this mini into the following challenge

the Mini Album Makers challenge

Wednesday, 23 May 2018

I am a Winner .......... yayyyyyyy

A very good morning/afternoon/evening to you all. Are you all sitting comfortably? This is going to be a loooooooong post.

If you have been following any of my latest projects on this blog, you will have seen that a number of projects were aimed at the Illusionary Artists challenge being staged, The task was, using either France Papillon's or Andy Skinner's stamps in the Chocolate Baroque Illusionary Artists range, create a project (or seven). Link the project into one of several spots and be judged by both artists. The prize was a feature blog post on the respective artists blogs. No mean prize considering the bragging rights this affords as both are amazing professional artists (as well as being lovely people) and I have had the greatest pleasure in meeting them both and taking more than one class in the Ministry of Mixology weekends.

Well I am ecstatic, to say the least. France loved my little mini book featuring Auntie Margo and co and it was this project that secured this fabulous prize for me.
Please click the link above to read more about this project.

So what new projects to feature in this post on France's blog

I made a few, trying to feature not only the stamps but also the fabulous stencils designed by France and produced by Tando Creative. The first two projects because I wanted some storage for some of my goodies.
First was a little book case to house the mini books I'd already made. 

Decorated with crackle paste through the "Rockformation" stencil on the outsides before painting and inside paint through the "crackled" stencil on back and shelves and paint through the "torned circle" on the insides and stamped with crackle stamp from "Rock'n Rust" plate.

Next storage for those stencils.....or for the journals that France both encourages, teaches and inspires with the help of her special team of butterflies both on facebook and her blog.

Purely functional with just the moths from the "Creepers and Crawlers" plate. Stamped onto some brusho-coloured watercolour paper and cut out, with a bit of interest inside with heat embossed owls from Stampendous.

The purely functional projects done - some real playtime.

This acrylic tag went in the box of some very special items to France. I must give a shout out to Nikki Killinger for the backwards crackle technique. Such an awesome way to decorate any clear substrate.
On my tag I used the boy from "Auntie Maud & co." and the little hearts and sentiment from the "perfect words" plate. 

Another tag - just because

From the Tando kit "France Papillon Tags and embellishments", and using "Rock formation" and "Rusted rivets" stencils with crackle paint before painting. A dusting of stampendous embossing enamel. The newt was cut out from tissue paper and adhered with matt medium. The moth was stamped into hot glue, cut out and coloured with mica powders. Both stamps on the “creepers and crawlers” plate. The sentiment is from the "Perfect words" plate stamped onto part of the embellishments kit that was painted, treated with one step crackle and then English red oxide antiquing cream applied and wiped back. Rusty wire "holds" it all together with a little help from some 3D glue.

as previously mentioned, France is very inspirational in the Art Journaling field as well as Mixed Media. It is because of her that I actually started my very first art journal after all these years of not understanding "WHY". Anyone who has not done any art journaling and is still dithering really needs to go and get stuck in. The “A layer a day, a spread a week” approach is really working for me and I know I'm not alone. I won't bore you here with my spreads done so far but one of the prompts was "Shadow of the morning". This next piece evolved whilst playing with decoart sosoft fabric paint with this prompt in mind.

You can see the "rusted rivets", "circles", "torned circle", "crackle" and "rectangles" stencils all being used before stamps from "Rock'n Rust", "Perfect Words" and Auntie Margot and co" make an appearance. This piece of fabric has been used to cover a 3x3 signature booklet made from A4 envelopes I have, that were bound, coptic style.
the fabric adhered to the envelopes and machine stitched round the outside

I hope you enjoyed looking at these projects almost as much as I enjoyed making them and I thank you for your endurance.

Once again, I want to thank France for not only choosing me as her guest on her blog but for being such a wonderful and inspiring lady.

All the paints/mediums are from Decoart 
(except the brushos and mica powders)

All the stamps, stencils and more can be found in France's shop

Monday, 14 May 2018

A Tale of a Chest with Drawers

Morning all, It looks like it might be a glorious morning here in my corner of the world. The pooch got me up at stupid o'clock with subterfuge just because she thought my bit of the bed would be the most comfy - hence writing this post at this silly hour.

The box was a recent purchase from Tando Creative. Advertised as a Stationery box and supplied with a board hinge at the back but I decided a bit of alteration would suit my needs better.

As with all 3-D projects, this post is picture heavy so all aspects can be seen. I have had this Prima pad for ages and this project screamed "use it" at me.

Front. Quite proud of the way I managed to get the image to line up - even though it took 3 pages of the same design - it was worth it in my eyes. 

The original item comes with a card hinge at the back. These side ways fitted hinges suited me better. Both hinges and handles purchased from Tando.

and the other side

showing the open top and drawers

Finally - the top view

No further embellishment needed in my view. I think the papers and the box provide their own adornment. (Plus adding flowers and such would detract from it's functionality) Thanks for looking.

Wednesday, 11 April 2018

Little Things

Morning all
I hope the weather where you are is better than here, cold and damp is an understatement. Middle of April and anyone would think that spring is still ages away.

More pain management therapy here in the way of crafting. It does help me and I know it helps others.  I made a tag. A mini canvas in a way that is bigger than an ATC so more can be thrown at it.

The tag is from Tando Creative. Their greyboard is second to none, so many mediums can me thrown at it and it always stands up to them. Decoart mediums and paints for me - never disappointed with the quality.

For this one I started out by attaching some corrugated card torn from a packing box. Some grey board strips - had to soak the greyboard with water to get this to tear - with the first layer of modeling paste. Next I mixed up a bit of the modelling paste with some texture paste for the next layer through a France Papillon stencil (Rusted Rivets) then some crackle paste. I had in mind some old tree bark and the mixture of textures that you get on some old trees subjected to years of whatever mother nature hurls at them with a touch of man-made pollution thrown in.

Next - loads of different paint layers - both in the form of neat paint and washes until I had the effect I was happy with. Sealed with three layers of matt varnish

A France Papillon moth stamp from the Chocolate Baroque Illusionary artists range Creepers and Crawlers coloured with water colours.

The words from the same range but the Perfect Words plate. The words were stamped onto cream velum and torn out before attaching.

A faux leather cord and done

Thanks for looking

I'd like to enter my tag into the challenge at

Make My Monday #68 - Things with wings
A Inky Mess - Anything Mixed Media Goes

Thursday, 5 April 2018

Broken Time

Morning all
Managed to escape the kisses and cuddles from our dog Nala for 5 mins. As much as I love them, it's hard to type a blog post or craft when 20kg of staffie is needing her fix of her hoooomans on a lap.

Soooooo, what have I got today?
A little plaque. Substrate and bits from Tando Creative with the stamped words from the Andy Skinner side of Illusionary Artists stamps from the Word Up plate made by Chocolate Baroque and the background stamp of the Clock Collage from Stampendous as is the Aged Ochre embossing enamel on the word frame. Decoart paints/mediums used.

The base and frame were first painted with black chalk paint then crackle then vintage and timeless paints respectively.  A little bit of rubbing back to show that black a bit more before stamping the clock collage in sepia archival ink.
The cogs and "clock hands" given various coats of paynes grey and quin. gold media paints. The clock hands started life as keys but as I had no clock hands, I improvised.

The clock dials had texture paste used before the paints.

The word plate - the frame was triple embossed then Andy's word stamp from the stampendous "steampunk" set pressed into the hot enamel with versamark.
To get those words to fit nicely with more control , I pressed the painted greyboard piece onto the stamp as opposed to stamping onto substrate. A couple of brads to complete then all glued together.

Thanks for looking

Sunday, 1 April 2018

A Toxic Plaque

Good afternoon and a Happy Easter to those that celebrate it.
Crafting is not only enjoyable for me, it also forms part of my own pain management. Drying time can be made to fall into those periods when I need to lie down so I have a win win situation most of the time. For those out there, and I know there are many, BIG gentle hugs to you all.

It's been a week since my last visit. I've been busy but can't share my makes just yet as they have not been received by the people they are intended for.
The piece I am going to share with you came about by chance really. I was searching for a particular roll of ribbon that I need for another project and came across a little package of MDF and grey board that was in a goody bag at one of the Ministry of Mixology retreats that I love going on. This bit donated by Tando Creative. It seemed to good an opportunity to put it to some use as this ribbon has still not come to light.

I started off by damping the edges of the greyboard and distressing thoroughly. Then left to dry.
All four pieces were painted with Decoart black chalk paint and when dry some crackle medium applied to some areas. Lighter coloured chalk paint in different colours applied to all pieces.
Rust effect - more paints. The stamp set I used is from Andy Skinner's stampendous range - "Toxic". It felt good to go back to some older stamps for a change. Why buy stamps if they are going to be used a few times then put away, never to be seen again, just because newer toys are at hand?
Some close ups of those distressed edges - they are solid now because I've sealed with ultra matt varnish.

The scratch and "toxic" stamps used here can be clearly seen.

The rivets are just aged brads. 

The finished plaque can be hung up with the rusted wire. The smallest piece is going to hang funny because it's already lost two rivets so no - I didn't mis-stamp.

Thanks for looking