Thursday, 27 March 2008

Mini Bouquet


A group of friends gather at my place almost every Tuesday to paper craft and chat. This past week, I decided to try out some new "mini" floral stamps from Inkadinkado. Click below to see one of the sets I used, Flower Pot Sentiments:
http://www.inkadinkado.com/products/detail.lasso?unq=0_New_Products_3247_Flower-Pot-Sentiments

My crafting friend, Stella, got me interested in these mini florals. She was using wood-mounted peg stamps from Rubber Stamp Tapestries (http://www.rubberstamptapestry.com/), which many consider the original of this style of stamping. Now there are a number of unmounted and clear stamp options for those who want to make these mini collages.

This style of stamping takes a bit of getting used to. I am more of a structured stamper, so I found these mini florals a bit of a challenge! I have to learn to "let go," and think about overlapping and allowing the pieces to free flow in the space. I am anxious to do more, but this was my first effort.

Friday, 7 March 2008

Paper-Crafting Baskets



My creative friend, Nancy, came to one of our Tuesday craft gatherings with the cutest basket, which was made using strips of cardstock. She had been trolling the internet and came across this basket tutorial created by Laura Canale who has the "wish you were here" blogspot. You can see her basket tutorial here:
http://wishyouwerehere-laura.blogspot.com/

I must admit, when I first saw the basket, I thought that it was much too fiddly and detailed for my crafting enjoyment. However, there was something about a challenge hanging out there in the front of me. I felt compelled to tackle this project. And I thought these little baskets would be ideal stuffed with candies to give to some of my son's teachers for Easter. (I say "some," because there is no way I will make 16 baskets; he has that many teachers!)

As of today, I have made four baskets; I only have pictures of three because one is really sad looking. It was a basket that another crafty friend of mine had given up and discarded. By the time I tried to recreate it, the tiny strips of paper were bent and no longer pulled easily through the weave of the basket.

However, I am proud of the three success stories. As you can see from the results, I like the idea of using double-sided patterned cardstock, in lieu of solid colors.

Was the project hard or easy? Hmmmmmmm . . . the first one was definitely a challenge. I hadn't printed out Laura's instructions, so I was darting to and from my computer desk and crafting table. Also, I was using a combination of adhesive and Tacky Glue with so-so results.

By the time I made the second basket, crafty Nancy suggested that I use Art Glitter's glue. I figured there can't be that much difference between Aleene's Tacky Glue and Art Glitter's Designer Adhesive. They both dry clear and permanent, but the Art Glitter glue dries in seconds! You can easily glue the paper and move on to the next piece without having to wait or have the glued pieces slip.

The hardest part of the basket are the tiny strips that you weave at the beginning. Once you get past those, the basket is fairly simple and satisfying.

The baskets are really sweet and pretty, but I don't think I can make anymore! My neck hurts from working over these baskets during the week.

Monday, 3 March 2008

Flutterbyes and other stamping projects



I recently participated in a mingle with some online rubber stamping friends.

What is a mingle? It is a swap with your friends of creative rubber stamping projects, such as cards, altered art, Artist Trading Cards, or any other kinds of handmade items.

Mingles enable you to set a creative goal, try new techniques and ideas, and share your artwork with others.

The recent mingle featured Butterflies, and I had purchased the perfect stamp set for this project from Close to My Heart. The copyrighted set is called, "Fluttering Love." In addition, I used paper from BoBunny and a Live, Love, Laugh stamp (copyright Inkadinkado). All the butterflies were trimmed out, and the larger butterflies were cut apart so that I could use different colors on their wings. Butterflies were also adorned with wire antennae, glitter and beads.

Well, I couldn't stop there! I also made an Artist Trading Card for a monthly ATC lottery with one of my rubber stamping groups. What is a lottery? The members of the group are invited each month to contribute a piece of artwork for a themed challenge. Our group hosts monthly card and ATC challenges. After you create your card or ATC, you scan it and drop it into the online group's folders. One of the lucky participants' name is drawn, and she is mailed ALL of the projects in the folder. How special is that? Below is my Flutterbye Flourish ATC (2.5 x 3.5 inches). It also features the Close to My Heart Fluttering Love stamp set, BoBunny papers, QuicKutz Flourish die, and a Creative Imaginations jeweled brad (which I really love!).



And finally, I made another ATC for the challenge, which was any thing with a flourish! This is the truly lovely A Quiet Life stamp set (copyright Stampin' Up!). The image is colored with Tim Holtz distressed inks and then embossed with thick UTEE embossing crystals to create a cracked glass effect. Prima flowers and QuicKutz Flourishes adorn the card.