Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Tutorial Time! Misty tags.

Hi all!

Well, we still have no baby.  My poor son and his girlfriend.  They have been sent home 3 times from the hospital in the last week.  Poor thing, Jess thinks she is feeling bad now and having contractions and discomfort but I think she doesn't realize just how bad it's going to get!  Those babies just take their time sometimes!

Meanwhile, in crazy Christmas-ing....

Anyone else still wrapping gifts???  I have a way to go but at least they are mostly purchased at this point.  AND I have the ones I need to ship all boxed up and ready to go so that's good.  I thought I would give you another tutorial for tags today in case you need a few more!

Aren't they pretty?!  These are easy to do using my MOST favorite Shimmering product on the market - Primary Elements Artist Pigment Powders.  Why are these my favorite?  Several reasons - The colors are brilliant and beautiful.  The shimmer is fantastic.  And most importantly, the immense versatility.  These powders are the base for ALL shimmering types of mediums and if you are like me when you want something you want one of EVERY color!  But the cost and storage can make that difficult so with Primary Elements powders I have gorgeous shimmering mists, paints, gels, anything I want.  It just depends on what I add the powders to.  This tutorial will show you just 2 of the MANY ways you can use these!

First, lets make a shimmering mist.  To do this you will need a mister of water, Gum Arabic - powder or liquid works, Primary Elements powder and a little scoop of some sort.  Gum arabic can be purchased in the art supply section of a craft store or online at Dick Blick and other places.

Add equal amounts of Gum Arabic and Primary Elements to the mister of water.  You can see above about how much to add.

Now mist your tags.  There are 2 ways you can do this.  On the left I sprayed the mist on to my craft sheet and laid the tag down in the puddle, lifted it, turned it, laid it down again and repeated this until I was happy with the color.  For this red tag I used Poppy Red, a great color at Christmas because the shimmer is gold - I love red and gold at Christmas!  For the tag on the right I just misted generously directly on to the tag.  This gives a more even coverage of both the red color and the gold shimmer.

Want to step it up a notch?  Grab a stencil.  I placed the stencil over the tag on the right and misted - do this lightly and at a bit of a distance so it is crisp.  Then I lifted the stencil and immediately laid it face down onto the tag on the left for a reverse, looser version.  This color is a newer one called Vintage Mint - just gorgeous!

Now grab a second stencil, something with a bit smaller design and we are going to do a tone on tone effect using the same color Primary Elements and Gel Medium.

Put some Gel Medium on a craft mat and then scoop out some Primary Elements and mix them together really well.  Place your stencil over your tag and smooth the colored Gel Medium like you would icing on a cake.  The less you mess with it the less likely it is to smear underneath.

Finish them off with ribbons, die cuts, a sentiment or however you like!

The Gel Medium gives it a neat, subtle dimension that really adds to the effect.

These are such a pretty addition to your holiday packages.

I truly love my collection of Primary Elements and consider them some of my most worthy expenditures in my studio and I bet you will love them too!  Check out the full range of gorgeous colors at ColourArte!


I am entering these tags in the following challenges:

Monday, December 15, 2014

Flaky Cards!

Hi all!

It's Christmas crunch time!  I have reached the point where things I wanted to do for Christmas start falling off my list as I realize I do NOT have enough time to do it all if I also want to sleep between now and Christmas day!  We did manage to get the tree up but only 1 big tree and Pezza's little mini tree "forest".  Less to take down and put away later right?  With hubby being in fire school 2 nights a week plus Saturdays AND duty crew AND working the fire dept.'s Christmas tree lot plus a Trevor and Jess's baby on the way, Hollyn's gymnastics and girl scouts, my PTO and other school related duties and my constant state of exhaustion for no reason whatsoever some things had to give.  However, I HAVE enjoyed making some Christmas cards though and have another set for y'all today.

Did y'all see the tutorial on stamping with Twinks & Silks HERE?  It's a great way to create stunning pieces quickly and easily.

I used the same stamps & techniques for these 2 sets of cards as I did for the tags in the tutorial.

Here are some close ups.

The subtle shimmer is gorgeous

Pairing Twinks & Silks with your red rubber stamps is a perfect match!  I will have another tutorial up for you tomorrow for more gift tags.  This one will feature my most favorite of the shimmery ColourArte products - Primary Elements Artist pigments.

I am entering the following challenges:

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Tutorial Time! Shimmering Snowflake Tags

Hi all!

Pezza is in gymnastics twice a week, there is a small waiting area lined with chairs for parents & siblings.  I am sitting there and there is another mom whose daughter is in Pezza's class who sits down with her older son.  She proceeds to have him take off his shoes and socks and begins checking him while telling him she is checking him for hand foot & mouth disease because his cousins have it and she is sure he does too. WTF!!!???!!  So as soon as class is over and we are in the car I tell Pez she needs to take a shower immediately.  She wants to know how the disease could be spread and I explain it is transmitted through body fluid so if the girl laughed and got spit on the mat and Pez put her hand in it and touched her eye it could be transmitted.  She was quiet for a few minutes and then I hear eveil laughter and she says Well!  One good thing that would come of getting the disease.  I could just walk up and cough on my enemies and BOOM they're out of school!  UMMMMM....seriously?  We went straight to bio-terrorism?  At the age of 8?  Scary girl this one.....

Anyway, I am back with another tutorial for you today!  They were inspired by the following challenges:

Aren't these tags pretty?  Well they're quick & easy too!

You just need a few items - your tags, 2 stamps (need to be red rubber - clear won't work), Twinkling H2Os, Silks Acrylic Glaze, paint brush and die cuts.  It is helpful to pick out the Twink color first and add a bit of clean water to begin softening the paint.

We are going to begin by stamping with the larger stamp using the Twinks.  Notice how thick the paint is in the picture above.  You want it nice and thick BUT don't load that much paint on the brush when you paint it onto the stamp.  You want to brush the Twinks onto the stamp thinly - try to avoid pooling the paint.  You almost won't be able to see the paint.  Work quickly but you don't need to feel panicky!  After you brush on the Twinks hold the stamp at a distance and mist lightly, then stamp onto your paper.

This technique can be tricky - some stamps work better than others.  I suggest testing it out on a scrap paper first.  Also you can "ghost stamp - if you mist the stamp again you can stamp it again and get a slightly different effect.

Next we are going to use the second stamp with the Silks.  Stamping with Silks is a bit different.

 Spread a small amount of Silks onto a non-stick surface in a thin layer.  Dab your stamp into the paint a few times and stamp onto your paper.

Add a few die cuts or embellishments to finish off the piece.  I love the way the 2 different paints shimmer in different ways - this adds interest to the overall piece.

Grab a set of each and start playing!  The best part?  You can stock up on Twinks RIGHT NOW for 25% off in this weekends flash sale!  This means the Twinks are only $3.23 each!!!  Grab a bunch on ColourArte while you can - the flash sale ends tomorrow!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Twinkling Cards

Hi all!

Today I have a set of cards for you.  Did you see my tutorial on Twinkling H2O washes yesterday?  Check it out - Twinks.

I was inspired by the following challenges:

I love this technique.  It looks awesome and is so quick, easy and foolproof.

The die cuts were done on my Cricut.

This color Twink is called Beachhouse Blue and you can get it in the Nantucket Mist 6 piece mini collection on Amazon!

Look at that shimmer!  Have you used Twinks lately?  Leave me a link to your last Twinks project so I can check it out!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Twinkling Tag Tutorial

Hi all!

We are currently hiding from the flu over here.  Kevin has been down for 3 days now and sick as a dog!  He has been banned from the rest of the house and is stuck upstairs in our bedroom and his office.  Jessica is due to have her baby Christmas Eve so she could have it any day now and I really don't want her to have flu too!  NOT good for the baby.  So when he goes in the bedroom I Lysol the hell out of the office and when he is in the office I Lysol the bedroom.  He started Tamiflu yesterday so hopefully the rest of us will escape unscathed....

Despite the constant Lysoling I HAVE had some time to play my studio and I have a little tutorial for you using Twinkling H2Os!  It WAS going to be a video tutorial but I lost the cord that connects to my laptop so that was out!

These tags are also for the following challenges:

Now let me show you how easy it is to add some sparkle to your projects!

You'll need to gather a few things - this technique is done using gorgeous shimmering Twinkling H2Os - ever heard of them?  Gorgeous pots of hard cake watercolor paint with LOADS of shimmer and beautiful color.  Start by adding some water to the Twinks you will be using - I use a syringe or dropper and just make a bit of a puddle and then let it sit while you gather other things.

This will work best on watercolor paper - mine is cold press so it has some texture which I like.  Cut it to the final size you want to use on your tag or card.  You will also need a focal piece - die cuts work nicely, 1-2 background stamps and a soft neutral color like the Sahara Sand VersaMagic Dew Drop from Tsukineko I used here.  You will also need a paintbrush and fresh clear water.

We are going to begin our background with the Twinks.  The puddle of water should have softened the paint into a nice goopey puddle sort of the consistency of honey or slightly thinner.  If it is super thick add a bit more water.  Before you add paint to your paper use your brush and wet the paper with clear water.  Then add Twinks, a little at a time, in a loose stroke-y fashion where you wet the paper beforehand.  Some areas will be darker with more paint and others will be lighter and more watery.  Play with the amount of paint and water until you are happy with the look.  Use both paint and water sparingly, if you get too much blot with a paper towel.  At this point you can also mist the paper with water and the Twinks will fade even more around the edges for a watery loose look.  The shimmer will be more noticeable where the paint is thicker.  Let dry or use a heat gun.

Now take the ink pad (this is why I really LOVE dew drops) ink up your background stamp (the music in my example) in spots, not completely and stamp it on to your DRY paper.  If you have a second stamp (the pine tree flourish) ink it up and stamp it too.

 And that's all there is to it!  Simply add your focal piece/embellishment/die cut and you're done!  Below is another one I made using ornaments and one in blue using snowflakes.

The camera doesn't quite catch the immense sparkle but you can catch it a little bit.

I love my Twinks!  Do you have some you need to pull back out and put to use?  If not then I highly recommend them!  You can get them on Amazon!  If you try this technique out do come let me know - I would love to visit your blog and see it.  Tune in tomorrow - I will be posting some cards using this same technique!

Friday, November 21, 2014

All that shimmers...!

Hi all!

Long time no see!  We've been having nothing but fun over here!  After a rough start in school Pezza seems to have settled in and we have a grandbaby due in a month!  Trevor, his girlfriend Jess and the baby will all be staying with us.  EGADS!!!

Since last minute is my favorite way to do things I thought HEY I think I'll make all my Christmas cards this year...RIGHT before Thanksgiving.....Gotta keep things exciting!

The following challenges inspired me:

SCS - Sketch challenge
4 Crafty Chicks - Make It Sparkle
Time Out Challenge - Embossing with sparkle

Since I have to make more cards than I have even figured out yet I wanted to keep it simple and repeatable but I still want some pizzazz so I reached for my jars of gorgeous shimmering Silks Acrylic Glaze.

I started with a white piece of cardstock and just swiped over it with Moss Green for the green cards and Carribean Mist for the blue ones.

The sparkle really comes through at the slightest tilt!

I stamped the background images in black Archival Ink.  I stamped the focal image in VersMark and used white embossing powder.  I wish the camera could adequately capture the amazing sparkle of the Silks!

Here is the whole collection for this batch - just 6 or 7 more batches to go!

Have you tried the Silks Acrylic Glazes??? A wonderfully sparkling, versatile, easy to use paint - check them out!

Saturday, September 6, 2014


Hi all!

We have all survived the first week of school!  MAN was it busy!  For a SAHM I sure don't spend much time actually at home.  I checked my calendar and I don't have a free day until Sept. 17th!  We also started gymnastics and soccer this week and now she wants to add a musical instrument plus Girl Scouts starts in a couple weeks!  She may have to make some hard choices here soon.  I have also started my first run on the PTO board so that has been keeping me busy with commitments for that, helping at school, beginning of the year IEP meeting -mercy!  I am iffy about her teacher so far - for one she has still not even read the IEP much less put into place the things Hollyn needs in order to make it through her day successfully and it has been a bit rough on her.  Hoping that gets resolved quickly.

This evening Hollyn is attending a SUPER idea of a birthday party - it is an UNsleeping sleepover party.  We will drop her off at 5 in her pjs and then all the girls are picked back up at 9.  I am very nervous about leaving her on her own without me to help her navigate being in a group but I am hoping for the best.  She is very excited.  Of course I had to make a tag for the gift and I was inspired by the following challenges:

I so need some new wrapping paper :P  I actually got 2 things so I wrapped them separately and then attempted to tie them together using 37 miles of curling ribbon.  This technically requires 3 if not 4 hands but I didn't have that advantage so it was lots of fun.....and NOT very effective so I ended up duck taping those suckers together but the unwrapping could get tricky....

I got some new-to-me birthday patterned paper - ADORABLE!!!  It is called Sugar Shoppe by Doodlebug Designs (I think I have loved every collection they have ever made.)  I got a 6 x 6 pad for making tags for Hollyn's friends.  While she was helping me design the card she got all whistful and said she feels jealous of her friends because they always get such cool handmade tags and she just gets store-bought ones.  I was surprised and happy that she still thinks my handmade ones are so much better!  I also need to make some for her apparently - I never do that :(  In reality the odds are quite high that 1. the tag may never even be seen, 2. whoever sees it may not even know it was handmade and 3. it will get ripped off the gift and thrown in the trash.  Guess what?  I don't care!  Because for just over an hour I sat in blissful semi-seclusion in my studio playing with paper and colored pencils! 

I colored the images with Polychromos colored pencils, doodled a border around the edge and put it all together!  I have her write a little to/from message on a sticker and stick it to the back of the tag.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!