16 September 2020

Staying in the Background with The Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog

Hi everyone and welcome. It's time for another challenge over at the The Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog. Cec is your host for this one and she has called it 'Staying in the Background'. "My challenge to you is to create your own background and use it in a shabby chic or vintage project - no pre-printed patterned paper this time. You can create the background in any number of ways and it can be simple or intricate. Using embossing folders. stencils, dies, stamps, washi tape, paints, inks or a gel press are just a few ideas. Make sure you give a brief description of how you created your background in your post."

As ever, the Design Team will choose their top four picks, with the winner being invited to join us in a Guest DT spot at The Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog and three additional outstanding entries will receive Top 3 Badges to display on their blogs. Everyone who enters and follows the rules will be entered into the draw to have the chance to win a $25 spending spree at The Funkie Junkie Boutique.

A new challenge provides another opportunity to add to my journal, and getting the chance to make a background or two is always a treat. Here's how the finished spread ended up...


... and looking at each page closer - totally different yet coordinated.



I've put together a tutorial to show how these backgrounds were created, starting with some painty play from my previous journal spread using Dina Wakley Media Acrylic Paints, a brayer and a 3 x 5 Gel Plate. Each 'pull' was made with heavyweight tissue paper (packaging material should never be binned!)


Here's a trick I learned from watching Seth Apter and others demo using Gel Plates and brayers - roll off the excess paint onto a scrap of paper and watch the magic happen as each layer goes on. I used more packaging, this time some of the brown paper stuff, because it gives you a great base colour and is sturdy without being too thick to cut/die cut.


Adding to the detail I used some white gesso through the Finnabair Prima Stencil 'Vintage Wallpaper', deliberately making it patchy, before using a dip pen with some of Seth's Izink Pigment Ink for mark making. You'll see below how the paper has been torn into sections to be used in different parts of my journal - it can also help to break up what can become an 'orderly, designed' background into more random pieces.


I used a couple of these pieces, having scraped some 'Avalanche' Izink Pigment Ink over one of them to shift the intensity of the colour.


Going back to the Gel Plate prints I chose to use this one, created by brayering one of the paler paint colours onto the Gel Plate and stamping into it with Wendy Vecchi's 'All Scratched Up' Background Stamp before adding further layers of deeper colour. You can also stamp over your painty backgrounds with this stamp and a pale permanent ink for a similar look.


More white gesso was applied through another Finnabair Prima Stencil 'Dandelions' onto one of the darker Gel Plate prints.


Finally I chose to use another couple of the Gel Plate Prints, ones with patterns created by the paint application alone. Small strips were cut from each of the selected papers and edged with Wendy Vecchi's 'Acorn' Archival Ink.


After arranging the strips onto the journal page (instructions from an old sewing pattern given a thin coat of white gesso) I changed my mind and chopped them into smaller pieces, messing around with the placement until they looked balanced. You'll see a shadow around the edge of each piece, created by using a charcoal pencil and blending it with water. Try using dilute paint, blended Distress Crayon or regular pencil with a blender for a similar look. At this point I realised the page looked like a quilt, hence the reason for adding faux stitches around each section with a white gel pen.


The corresponding page already had a lot of detail, having been constructed from a handkerchief and a piece of watercolour paper, so I kept it simple by stamping and heat embossing Wendy Vecchi's 'All Scratched Up' Background again (this time in gold). You'll see a small piece of vintage lace added over the top; it's always worth checking old, worn linens and bedding for trims which can be recycled in your projects.


With both backgrounds complete I kept the 'topper' for the 'quilted' one relatively simple, die cutting some of the Sizzix 'Hidden Leaves' Thinlits Dies from black card and dry brushing them with 'Gilt' Dina Wakley Media Acrylic Paint. Adding drops of Wendy Vecchi's 'Carnation' Liquid Pearls, some Glossy Accents and a little stitching helps to lift the finished look.



With the second embossed background being a lot simpler it was easier to add more detail on top, starting with a tag cut from the brayered brown paper. The stitched lines from the quilted page were echoed around the edge of the tag and I included more texture with fabric, sheer ribbon, simple hand stitching and an embroidered flower from my stash. The lovely phrase, taken from Wendy Vecchi's 'Rosy Art' Stamp Set, was stamped onto one of the backgrounds chosen for the 'quilt'. 



Looking more closely you can see how each of the layers work together;



So that's my take on the theme 'Staying in the Background'. My talented team mates have also come up with their own projects with bespoke backgrounds in or on them for this challenge so make sure you hop on over and check them out HERE. And remember to link up your own shabby chic or vintage pieces to be in with a chance of winning one of the fabulous prizes that's up for grabs.

Thanks for visiting,
Jenny xxx

Products used to create this card are available from The Funkie Junkie Boutique and are listed/linked below.


15 September 2020

Project Foldaway Box for Eileen Hull Designs

Hi everyone and welcome. This month Eileen Hull's Inspiration Team are sharing a variety of different projects inspired by the theme 'The Great Outdoors'. I'm sharing a new 'project box' created as a result of taking Eileen's 'Foldaway Box' online class for Country View Crafts. It's such a clever project and you can still sign up to take the class HERE.


For anyone who has to keep track of the various products used in a project (all those inks, paints, embellishments, dies, stamps etc) having a set of containers that can keep them all together is so helpful. I also wanted somewhere to record process notes and deadline dates. You can see below the smaller box and coordinating Tiny Book which has lots of tea stained pages ideal for just this purpose.


Opening the smaller box up you can see that it's divided into compartments - I used the 'Stacking Drawers' die to create the sections, cutting down the width by 1/4 inch so that it would fit snuggly inside and keep the lid secure - whilst a project is ongoing it can hold those embossing powders, trims, inks, embellishments and more. The lid can also be used as a storage tray.


Below you can see the main foldaway box, the larger box which holds the smaller box and book inside when not in use. I decorated all three pieces with woodgrain paper from the Mintay Papers collection 'Life Stories', whitewashing them with gesso and sanding them back before inking the edges to give them a shabby chic look. The pattern was created using a Rebekah Meier stencil from The Crafter's Workshop and the flowers (highlighted in places with Glossy Accents) came from the same paper collection as the woodgrain paper.


Finally, the photo below shows how the larger box can also be used as a storage vessel for the larger bottles, pens, dies etc with it's joined double compartment. Eileen's design for this really is so clever and it will now be in permanent use on my craft table.


Don't forget you can still sign up for Eileen's 'Foldaway Box' online class for Country View Crafts HERE. And make sure to check out what the rest of Eileen's Inspiration Team have made this month  by visiting Eileen's website.

For now, thanks for visiting,
Jenny xxx

2 September 2020

Birds with The Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog

Hi everyone and welcome. It's time for another challenge over at the The Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog. Suzz is your host for this one and she has called it 'Birds'. "For this Challenge I want you to be inspired by our flying friends. You can take the challenge literally and have images or die cuts of birds on your art, you can be inspired by the words describing birds or even showcase their homes. Make sure to share with us how you were inspired by the birds."

As ever, the Design Team will choose their top four picks, with the winner being invited to join us in a Guest DT spot at The Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog and three additional outstanding entries will receive Top 3 Badges to display on their blogs. Everyone who enters and follows the rules will be entered into the draw to have the chance to win a $25 spending spree at The Funkie Junkie Boutique.

With a vague idea in my head for how to incorporate a bird into a journal page I began to develop this piece in my new junk journal, making changes and additions along the way and coming up with a method for using a partial die cut piece along the way. Here's the completed journal page;


And before we get started with the tutorial here are a couple of close ups;



Having taken photos along the way here's how the journal page came together;


I wanted to use part of the delicate die cut strip from the Sizzix Chapter 3 Thinlits 'Intricate Corners' set but didn't want to have to spend time piecing the design back together after cutting it apart. To get round this I glued the whole die cut piece to a single ply sheet of tissue by applying adhesive to the reverse side of the die cut. Once dry I was able to tear away the excess tissue around the edges before using a paper trimmer to slice along the design.


Having identified which pages in my junk journal to work on I began creating the layout, adding a line of Seth Apter's Izink Pigment Ink using the handy built in brush before adding the partial die cut strip underneath with a coat of gel mat medium. You'll see how having created a 'carrier sheet' for the die cut piece I was even able to separate the strip into two pieces to go across the two sides.


Above you can see how I stamped Wendy Vecchi's 'Register' Background Stamp over the left side of the design using a pale grey Archival Ink. Prior to this I had also brushed a little White Gesso across both sides and added some watercolour either side of the black line in various shades of brown. Some of that gesso caught the black line which helped to make give it a softer look. Linda's store carries a number of watercolour paint sets by Prima Marketing, listed at the end of this post. The charcoal pencil circle line was smudged to make it less harsh.


I have recently inherited a number of dip pens and nibs and have started experimenting with adding 'scripting' to my art. It occurred to me that Seth Apter's Pigment Ink could work for this. I found adding just a little water to it made it fluid enough to work beautifully for this purpose.


Picking out the neutral shades (plus Sedona) from the Dina Wakley Media Acrylic Paint range I used my 3 x 5 Gel Plate and a brayer to create a bunch of prints on tissue. On a couple of them I pressed Wendy Vecchi's 'All Scratched Up' Background Stamp into the paint on the Gel Plate to add some pattern to the prints. I removes excess paint from my brayer by rolling it across a piece of brown paper packaging from one of Linda's parcels when making each print, creating another multi layered sheet for use in my journal at some point in the future. Below is a close up shot of the pulled prints; 


Not wanting to add too much 'bulk' to the pages I chose to cut the circle and a bird shape from a couple of the tissue prints, layering them over the top of each other using a gel mat medium.


To echo the lace handkerchief on the right side I added a piece of lace from Linda's store onto the edge of the left side, and then applied some squares of gel printed tissue in a contrasting colour above and below the bird. I then stitched around the bird with some of the embroidery thread (floss) used for the flowers on the journal wrap. It helps to poke your holes around the shape in advance of stitching in order to achieve an even look.


A phrase from Wendy Vecchi's 'All Occasion Art' Stamp Set was stamped onto a piece of crumpled dressmaking pattern tissue before being added to the handkerchief page with gel mat medium. I also began experimenting with adding a touch of watercolour around the larger stitched rectangle on the left hand page.


At this point I walked away and thought about why the finished design didn't look quite right. Having taken some 'time away' from the journal spread I decided to add squares from the mainly Sedona tissue print over the aqua ones, extend the black line across the whole two pages, add Glossy Accents over the bird, apply some Remnant Rubs, a small paperclip and some dots of Wendy Vecchi Liquid Pearls.

And here as a reminder is the completed piece;




So that's my take on the theme 'Birds'. My talented team mates have also come up with their own projects with birds in or on them for this challenge so make sure you hop on over and check them out HERE. And remember to link up your own shabby chic or vintage pieces to be in with a chance of winning one of the fabulous prizes that's up for grabs.

Thanks for visiting,
Jenny xxx

Products used to create this card are available from The Funkie Junkie Boutique and are listed/linked below.

19 August 2020

It's A Wrap with The Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog

Hi everyone and welcome. It's time for another challenge over at the The Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog. Sara Emily is your host for this one and she has called it 'It's A Wrap!'."Whenever I hear this term, I think of something that's finished or completed. But for this challenge, we want you to share your vintage or shabby chic gift wrapping, gift box or bag or perhaps a set of gift tags. Or maybe you might take a different approach and use a wrap die cut or gift packaging on your project -- just be sure to tell us what your 'wrap' is if it's not obvious!"

As ever, the Design Team will choose their top four picks, with the winner being invited to join us in a Guest DT spot at The Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog and three additional outstanding entries will receive Top 3 Badges to display on their blogs. Everyone who enters and follows the rules will be entered into the draw to have the chance to win a $25 spending spree at The Funkie Junkie Boutique.

Yesterday I shared a new junk journal, created after a clear out which provided the perfect opportunity to find 'free' stuff full of memories. Today I'm sharing the wrap cover made to keep it safe and add decoration to the outside, my take on Sara Emily's wrap challenge theme.


Above you can see the wrap tied securely around the journal, below what it looks like unfurled and laying flat. As the art inside the journal develops the idea is that I can continue to add to and embellish the wrap cover with other scraps.


I've taken a few photos to show how it came together, starting with the floral tag on the front. The smaller of the flowers from Wendy Vecchi's 'Bravo' MAKE ART stamp/stencil/die set were stamped onto some cotton calico with Archival Ink before being filled in with embroidery thread (floss) using satin stitch. Using a variegated strand meant that different shades could provide contrast between the separate petals. The spare calico was trimmed away to leave the flowers and a small border around each one.


An old luggage tag was altered with some washi tape, black acrylic paint lines and a little stitching. A couple of leaf stems for the flowers were cut from an old map using dies from the Sizzix Thinlits 'Intricate Corners' Die Set and were embossed with clear embossing powder to strengthen them.


You can see below where the leaves and flowers were added to the tag along with some Rub-Ons for added detail. There's also a little torn cheesecloth glued onto the reverse of the tag ready to mount onto the wrap.


The main body of the wrap was cut from a layer of cotton calico and a slightly larger one from an old lace tablecloth. They were measured to ensure the finished wrap would cover and overlap around the journal even if it were to expand further. After marking where the spine would sit I used Wendy Vecchi's Background Stamp 'All Scratched Up' on a couple of pieces of tea stained cotton watercolor paper and stitched them securely onto the fabric layers.


After adding a panel of thick cotton lace from my stash across the spine area the remaining visible pieces of paper were enhanced with die cut leaf panels using another of the dies from the 'Intricate Corners' die set. These were glued firmly in place with an added layer of matte medium applied over the top to keep them secure. You'll see below that more lace has been added to the left hand side of the wrap - this is lace trim for net curtains, another of those lucky finds during the clear out.


Needing something to keep the wrap in place around the journal I measured a length of old cotton seam binding in place and stamped it with numbers in random patterns. To finish I added an extra piece of contrasting vintage lace around the spine and glued the finished tag onto the front along with a little bronze key from Linda's store.


Here are some close ups of the finished wrap;




So that's my take on the theme 'It's A Wrap!' My wonderfully talented team mates have also come up with their own wrap projects for this challenge so make sure you hop on over and check them out HERE. And remember to link up your own shabby chic or vintage pieces to be in with a chance of winning one of the fabulous prizes that's up for grabs.

Thanks for visiting,
Jenny xxx

Products used to create this card are available from The Funkie Junkie Boutique and are listed/linked below;
Wendy Vecchi MAKE ART Stamp, Die, Stencil Set - 'Bravo'Dina Wakley Media Acrylic Paint - 'Black'

18 August 2020

Memories Junk Journal for Eileen Hull Designs

Hi everyone and welcome. This month Eileen Hull's Inspiration Team are focusing on junk journals in all their forms. Eileen has a wonderful variety of dies for creating journals in different sizes and they are easy to assemble. Using items of 'junk' (stuff you might otherwise throw away or have left over from other projects) to create the pages inside is great because it's accessible to everyone and for the most part free, though not everyone likes this style of crafting and some raise the valid question of why you would do it in the first place.

My project this month shows some ideas for using a variety of bits and pieces that have collected during a recent clear out to make a new art journal. It is a way of capturing memories through the assembly of the pages themselves and eventually by the art that's added to them. It also means I don't have to buy a new art journal and have something much more personal to use. Here's what the 'completed' journal looks like at the moment - since the pages inside will be a 'work in progress' I decided to leave the cover unfinished too so more could be added along the way;


You'll see from the photo above that the pages aren't all sized to fit nicely inside the 'Pocket Notebook' cover because there are no rules to say that they should and those brief glimpses of the contents make you want to look inside and see more.

I started this journal by making the cover, cutting the front and back from matboard using Eileen's 'Pocket Notebook' Die. Below shows how I cut away the spine section from each cut and reattached one of these pieces to the centre of the covers using Architape, the 1/4 inch spacing tools and Teflon bone folder from Cool Katz Craft. This is done to make the spine more flexible and to allow the finished pages to open flat once the journal is complete.


Below you can see how the covers were decorated with assorted salvaged bits and pieces - there's the textured surface which is actually the reverse of an old map (the fold lines are still visible and I kept the bits of brown card that were stuck firm to it. You'll also see the old bits of string, masking tape, the frayed edge from an off-cut of calico fabric and some ribbon that coordinates with the spine.


Turning to the pages inside I knew I wanted different sizes and was inspired by Eileen's suggestion of using envelopes. The ones below are small brown wage packed envelopes that have been joined together by slipping the opening of one into another and covering the join with washi tape. The brown surface has been given a coat of white gesso and on one side of each page a piece of mixed media journal paper has been added. I also cut off a thin strip from the sealed end of each envelope to create pockets.


During the clear out I found some lace pocket handkerchiefs. Rather than send them to a charity shop they were torn in half and had more of the journal paper stitched onto them, ensuring some of the lace detail could still be seen. You'll see below that more washi tape was added to the centre - this is a way of strengthening the centre fold in preparation for being stitched into the journal.


Another way of preserving memories through things which might otherwise be discarded during a clear out is to cover some of the handwritten detail with clear gesso so that it can eventually be incorporated into the art that's created on top. Below I did this with the notes written in pencil on the manuscript paper, again attaching the journalling paper to the untouched sides and strengthening the centre spines with washi tape.


Having used some of the manuscript pages from an old music book I also decided to use the cover too, adding white gesso to the front and stitching journal paper to the reverse sides.


To make some flap pages I used pieces of vellum, again stitching different sized pieces of journal paper to them so that sections of the vellum could still be seen.


Returning to Eileen's idea of using envelopes I used these DL sized ones that had previously been tea stained and again attached them together by inserting the opening side of one into the other before securing them with glue and washi tape. Since these pages are large they were also ideally suited to being cut along the centre on one side to create flaps. On the non-flap side I once again cut off a small strip from the closed edge to create a large pocket.


Finally I salvaged some old dress patterns and applied the white gesso and journal paper to them to create more pages. Once assembled and altered the pages were hand stitched together before being secured inside the covers with a fabric spine backing and some old aged copier paper.


So now you've seen the bits and pieces I used to create the pages inside the finished journal let's take a look at how it all came together, going back to the front cover;


Delving inside the front covers here are the end pages, the old copier paper used to secure the stitched signatures inside. I ran a piece of masking tape along the spine partly as a decorative feature and partly to protect this potentially weaker join from becoming damaged when in use.


Turning the end pages over you can see some of the stitched spine and the first of the lace pages.


Below you can see how one of the flip pages works, concealing some of the previous page and revealing some of what's to come.


Here you can see some of the covered manuscript paper and one of the larger envelopes. As well as providing different sizes of page to work on going forward they are also different surfaces.


The mix of sizes and surfaces can really be seen here where the protected manuscript and covered wage packet pocket also reveal the larger envelope and sewing pattern pages below.


And here is that sewing pattern, obscured on one side by the journal paper and left partially visible through the white gesso on the other.


Finally here's more of the lace handkerchief and one side of the music book cover. You can see how the stitching and flexible spine allow for the pages to lay flat ready for working on in future.


That's it for this month's projects from me. Make sure to check out what the rest of Eileen's Inspiration Team have created for the junk journal theme by visiting Eileen's website.

For now, thanks for visiting,
Jenny xxx

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