Sunday, April 28, 2013

It's still April ... I'm not too late

Here it is the end of April and I'm finally attempting Tim's April 2013 tag.  I love the dragonfly blueprint stamp.  I just couldn't let the opportunity go by without giving it a shot.

I also love the Distress Paints.  I used Broken China and Wild Honey.  I didn't have the Distress Metallic Paints, so I opted for the Copper from Ranger's Adirondack Metallic Paint Dabbers.  It actually worked pretty well with water and the Distress Paints. After the paint was dried, I covered parts of the tag with a layer of Distressed Ink in Vintage Photo, Broken China, and  Rusty Hinge and flicked some water on it.  I really like the interaction of all the Distress products! 

Shrink plastic was used for the dragonfly wings.  I like the effect.  I have no idea how many layers of paint and alcohol ink are on the metal "8" at the bottom.  I think I spent more time on it than anything else on this tag.

It was a great deal of fun playing with new techniques and products on this tag.  Thanks Tim for continuing to challenge us to new levels of creativity.

I am truly enjoying the journey.

-- Mary Elizabeth

Friday, April 26, 2013

A Colorful Return

It has been an exhausting couple of weeks with very little time allowed in my craft room.  Even the when I did make it in there, my pieces (like my very tired self) became muddied and muddled.  So, over the last couple of days, I've made a little more time for me and my artwork.  Although not perfect, the tag that I've made for Simon Says Stamp and Show Color Challenge made me happy.  And it's made with some of the scraps of materials used to soak up excess ink and "failed" projects from over the last couple of weeks.  So, my creative endeavors haven't been a total loss :)

This tag started out soaking up an excess mixture of Dylusion's Postbox Red and Pure Sunshine Spray inks.  It made for a vibrant red-orange background for this lovely vintage floral stamp from Inkadinkado.   I used Tim Holtz Distress Markers in Vintage Photo and Old Paper to go over the shading of the stamped image.  Spiced Marmalade and Mustard Seed markers were used to add a little yellow to the center of the flower.  I went around the outside edge with Picket Fence.  Then I added script and swirl stamps to the background (using Distressed Ink in Frayed Burlap), flicked with water, stuck on some pearls. and added text on a scrap of paper left over from my pile of last week's attempts.

Hopefully color makes you smile as well and you've had some quality time to make something colorful of your own this week.

- Mary Elizabeth

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Soaring ... my first blog post

Hanging out in my craft room keeps me sane. I can get away from the world and lose myself in ink, paper, paint, beads, brads, glue and even power tools on occasion. So here I am ... opening my craft room door and welcoming you. I would like to share my work and thoughts and hopefully have some company along this journey ... my walk on the creative side of life.

Over the last couple of weeks, I've been working on a project in honor of the warm spring temperatures that have finally made their way into the mountains of North Carolina. It's an altered bird house with bird that has just taken flight. After seeing the Simon Says Stamp & Show Fly Challenge for this week, I thought it seemed a perfect fit for this little project of mine.

Hopefully I will get better at photographing my work as the adventure continues. In the meantime, let me show you around some of my birdhouse's details. The bird in flight is attached to the birdhouse with a little strip of plastic that I recycled from one my Tim Holtz Ideology packages. The bird itself was made by tracing a cardstock bird embellishment that I had on to a piece of folded manila card stock. When I cut it out, I ended up with two identical bird bodies. I embossed opposite sides of the two birds using a Darice "Falling Leaves" embossing folder. I then pasted head and tail of the two birds together (embossed sides out). I then free handed some wings (also embossed with "Falling Leaves" folder) and cut some slots in the bird bodies to insert the wings and securely tape them to the inside of the bird. I finally glued the remainder of the bird together, leaving a little pocket to insert the end of the plastic packaging strip. The bird was colored using Picket Fence Distress Stain and Forest Moss, Walnut Stain, and Frayed Burlap Distress ink.

This project started out as a little fiberboard birdhouse that I picked up on the clearance rack at Michaels a few weeks ago.  When I thought about covering the house, I found Washi tape and some scraps of paper that coordinated in blues and browns.  Some of the scraps of paper were inked with  Distressed Ink in Broken China to give them a little more blue color and some were stamped.  All were then adhered on to the sides and roof of the house with Rangers Glue N' Seal.  The house's surfaces were then sanded and I used some Walnut Stain, Frayed Burlap, and Vintage Photo Distress Ink to give the house a "grungy" feeling.  I finished the house's surfaces with a glaze made with   Claudine Hellmuth's Multi Medium in Matte and a mixture of Wild Honey, Walnut Stain and Vintage Photo Distress Inks.  The front is embellished with some jewelry findings and Tim Holtz ideology leaves held together with a cute button brad.

Ok ... I admit it ... I love shrink plastic.  There are some many cool things you can do with it.  The sign holder and "SOAR" sign on the front of the house are both made with shrink plastic.  I cut out a rectangle of shrink plastic and stamped the word "SOAR" and the flourish with StazOn Jet Black ink before I baked it.   I die cut the sign holder out of shrink plastic with Tim Holtz's Hanging Sign Sizzix die.   After it was baked, I colored it with black alcohol ink and some black acrylic paint.   It is tacked on to the front of the birdhouse with a small Tim Holtz grungeboard hinge. 
This hinge is great.  It actually allows me to fold in the sign if I'm moving the piece.  I have a small tack nailed into the left side of the birdhouse that I can catch and hold the sign when it is folded back.

On the back, I created a "feather" tag with jewelry findings, Tim Holtz wings and cute feather from a Mark Richards feather sticker.  (Some other feathers from the this sticker adorn the top of the birdhouse.)  The tag is tie on with some twine.

On the last stop of our tour, you can see some metal tag letters spelling "FLY" on the right side of the birdhouse.  I definitely feel this way now that Spring is finally here :)

Thanks for dropping by to check out my inaugural blog and sharing in my first steps on this journey.

~ Mary Elizabeth