Thursday, 26 May 2016

Wecome to today's Guest Designer, Amanda !

Today we are welcoming Amanda from Ink a Pink as our Guest Designer. Amanda was chosen by the DT as the winner of the Spring is in the Air challenge. So, let's move on to hear from Amanda !

Hello Everyone, Amanda here, otherwise known in the blog world as Ink-A-Pink.

It is a real honour to have been invited to feature as a Guest designer here today. Thank you so much to ALL the Stamps and Stencils team for giving me this wonderful opportunity to share some of my creativity with you all.

I'm a Yorkshire girl ‘born n bred’ living in Sheffield, England. From a very young age I have always had a keen interest in anything Arty or Creative. I’ve knitted, sewed, made cards, hand painted T-shirts, painted in watercolours and pencil sketched over the years - I just loved to keep my fingers busy and though I occasionally still let my pencil take a walk along the page or let the paint flow freely from the brush I now spend most of my time crafting making either cards, journal pages or mixed media projects. I began devoting a lot more of my time to crafting in 2011 when I came across ‘The creative world of Tim Holtz ‘ and started blogging in February 2015 so despite having an arty background I feel my creative journey is only just beginning as I have so much more to learn and discover .

My creativity is something I can embrace; it gives me purpose and meaning, a way of speaking without a voice, and a place I can go to to‘release’! To quote Picasso - 'Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life' - and for me this is never truer!

When I learned that Stamps and Stencils challenge theme this month, hosted by Branka was 'Think Pink' I couldn't help but smile! It had my name written all over it- literally !! Hahaha! So with that I decided to alter a 5x7 inch canvas using tones of pink and an old school photo of this little girl named 'PINK'!

I primed the canvas with a coat of gesso and once dry began laying down colour. For this I used Tim Holtz wrinkle free distress technique and distress paints instead of distress inks. This gave me a general wash of colour which I built upon using both paints and gesso applying the mediums by finger painting, dry brushing and sponge painting. 

Next the Stamping and stencilling. I used Distress inks and a couple of Tim Holtz and Dylusion stencils, a script, speckle and splat stamp and Watering can archival ink . I created some texture on the canvas by applying texture paste through Tim Holtz dot fade stencil. When dry I caught the top of the dots lightly with distress ink.A few lid top paint circles along with 'crazed' corners (using Tim Holtz crazing medium) added more detail. I used a distress crayons to help enhance the subtle cracks of the crazing and to distress the sides of the canvas. A few drips and splats of Picked Raspberry distress paint along with light touches of silver gilding wax finished off the background canvas.

 Close up of the crazing.

The crackle panel is a piece of mount board cut to size, gessoed and painted using distress paints. I created a cardboard mask to adhere temporarily to the mount board panel to enable application of the crackle paste to the top, bottom and sides of the panel only thus creating a frame for the photo to be placed within.

 Once dry I applied Distress paint to add a touch of colour and enhance the crack.

The inner frame is one I found in my stash simply altered with gesso and touches of distress paint and silver gilding wax. I kept the embellishments simple - just 4 hex nuts topped with black gems to each of the crackled panel corners,a stamped acetate butterfly,

 and a small talk sticker - a personal 'note to self...'

I really enjoyed creating this canvas and am pleased with how it turned out . I hope you like it too.

You are very welcome to stop by my blog to see a few more close ups.

Huge thanks again to all the team at Stamps and Stencils for the Guest design spot today. It has been a real priviledge and honour and I've loved every minute.

I'm sure you'll all agree that Amanda's project is stunning and has provided even more inspiration for the current challenge which is Think Pink ! 

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Watercolor Background

Hi everyone!
Branka here and today is my turn to bring you an Inspirational post. I've decided to show you how to create a watercolor background without actually using watercolors.
If you want to achieve an artistic look of your background in an easy way than this technique is for you.
You can use it on your cards, art journal pages, ATCs, tags or anything you like.

Let's get started!

For this technique you would need:
- a piece of watercolor paper or a heavy cardstock (both will work)
- a spray bottle filled with water
- watersoluble markers (Tombow Dual Tip, Kuretake Zig Clean Color Real Brush pens, Distress markers, Crayola Washable markers or any watersoluble type of markers you have).
- a blending palette or an acetate package (I am using a package)
- paper towel or a rag

First, you'll need to cut the paper but make sure your paper is not bigger than your blending palette or your acetate package.

Next, choose your colors.
Tip: Make sure to choose colors that blend well and won't turned muddy when mixed. If you want to use complementary colors, don't put them directly next to each other on your blending palette.

If you are using Tombow Dual Tip markers, you need to use the brush side of the marker. 

Scribble areas of color on your blending palette or your acetate package.
Tip: If you want to cover the whole paper with colors than apply your colors on area about the size of the paper that you are using. I wanted to have some blank areas on my papers so I applied my colors randomly on my palette.

Spray the palette or an acetate package with a spray bottle filled with water.
Tip: Each portion of color should have beads of water on it.

Take your paper and place it on top of the wet color. Keeping the paper in the same place, use your hand to smooth the paper to spread the water.
Next, lift the paper off the palette and place it on a surface to let it dry.
Here is the result:

You can use your Kuretake Zig Clean Color Real Brush pens to achive a watercolor background.

Scribbled areas of colors on a palette.


Using Distress markers:

Repeat the steps as abowe:


Using Crayola Washable markers (any type of Crayola Washable markers you have):

Scribbled areas of colors:


You can use this technique in creating some scrapbooking accents, as well. 

I hope I have inspired you to play with your watersoluble markers in creating some artistic looking watercolor backgrounds and to join in our Think Pink challenge here at Stamps and Stencils!
Hugs! Branka xx

Thursday, 12 May 2016

Simple Mini Album Construction

Hello cool people!  Autumn here with a little tutorial for you on creating a simple mini album.  Recently, I was sorting my designer paper and decided to remove the chipboard backs off of the pads of paper (ahem - to make more room for paper...)  Anyway, I thought it would be fun to create a painted mini album that didn't have to be covered with designer paper (because apparently I need to hoard it!)  Wrapping book covers can be so tricky, ya know, so I hope you will enjoy this option.

 I cut one of my ticker sheets of chipboard down to 6" x 12".  Next, I used my score board to score lines on both the back and front 4 3/4" from each side.  This resulted in a rather thick binding.  You could narrow and change the dimensions to your preference.  Then I punched two holes for the binding.  The chipboard cracked at the seam, but to me that adds to the texture of what would become a grungy, distressed album anyway.  To further accentuate the cracks, I scraped all the edges, inside and out, with a pair of scissors, then scribed lines into the cardboard.

Here you can see the cracks, but I promise the end result is sturdy, the cracking is only on the top layer of the chipboard.  If it bothers you, you could cover with washi tape, just add some adhesive on top and bottom for security.  Next, I gessoed the entire book  to prepare the surface for my watercolor.

First I stenciled the inside and out with a beautiful ledger stencil.  Next, I applied layer of layer of various colors of watercolor paint, heat setting between each layer.

 I printed various copyright free images from a Google search and The Graphics Fairy, along with several verses for my collages.   I also blended in lots of stamped images and die cuts.

The pages inside are envelopes so I can store little notes, scripture, and journal snippets.  I prepped the envelopes with gesso to support the weight and paint.

Because the book is quite thick, I was able to add 3-Dimensional elements, and I will be able to stuff the envelopes quite full.  I had intended to do  more pages, but my husband used my craft envelopes for bills!  To think!  ;0

For me, painting my own cover and elements was a perfect way to play along with Branka's Think Pink challenge this month.  I don't normally buy pink, so this was the perfect alternative.

One last shot at the simple binding, which will allow me to add more pages after a trip to town!  I hope you are inspired to join our Think Pink challenge this month.  Why not create a pink project for a special woman in your life?  Thanks for visiting, Autumn

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Winners of Trash to Treasure

Hello ! We're back today to share the winners of the Trash to Treasure challenge. There were so many fabulous entries the choice, as always, was a difficult one. So without further ado....

Congratulations Drea

We loved the fabulous transformation of the almond can and the beautiful butterflies are wonderful. Drea please email for details of your Guest Designer spot and winners badge.
Now on to the top 3:


Congratulations everyone, please email for your top 3 badge. 
All of the winners will also be pinned on the Stamps and Stencils Pinterest Board! 
The current challenge is Think Pink and you've still got plenty of time to share your pink projects with us.

Thursday, 5 May 2016

Think Pink

Hello! Welcome to a new challenge here at Stamps and Stencils! Branka here and I am your host for this month. I have chosen the theme Think Pink.
I love to use pink colour in my projects especially the fluorescent pink.
For this challenge we would love to see a mixed media project that has some pink in it somewhere! The possibilities are endless! Don't forget to include some stamping or stencilling or both in your mixed media project and remember we are a mixed media challenge blog!

Here is some inspiration from the design team:


Now, it's over to you! We're looking forward to see your 'Think Pink' mixed media projects!