Saturday, 31 March 2012

Can you believe

that I painted this yesterday:

I have to say that I am really rather pleased with myself!  Am even going to frame it and put it up in the lounge.  Whoo hoo.

Also a big hello to Chris - thanks for following me.

Thanks for looking - Feeling like an artist from Solihull

Friday, 30 March 2012

Creative Chemistry Day 10

Wow how quick and easy is today's lesson!

I love this technique, I have four bottles of Distress Stickles but I have to confess I don't really use them but I think todays technique has changed my mind and I will be using them more often!

Have managed to do two tags (mainly because I messed up the stamping on the first one but it will be ok if I add some embellishments to it), will keep the second one for my techniques book.

First one I used Scattered Straw distress stain on the background edged with Vintage Photo ink.  The image is stamped in Broken China and Walnut Stain and covered in Spiced Marmalade distress stickles.  The second one is exactly the same apart from I used Bundled Sage distress stain on the background.

Thanks for looking - Off to my art class from Solihull

Thursday, 29 March 2012

I have had a creative chemistry play!

Had a little play this afternoon and made some tags with some techniques I have learnt on the Creative Chemistry course.  I love to keep a little pile of handmade tags ready made as you never know when you need to drop a quick note to someone and I much prefer to send a tag made with love now rather than a bought notecard.  Here are my latest results:

These are from day 5 I used distress stains for the backgrounds - I haven't made a note of the colours but I think I used Barn Door, Peeled Paint, Spiced Marmalade, Mustard Seed and either Black Soot or Vintage Photo on the tags and then I have stamped with Jet Black Archival on the first tag with Picket Fence stain over the top, the trees are Picket Fence too and the lampost is Black Archival.  On the second tag I stamped the house in Broken China distress ink with black archival over the top, the trees and lampost are the same as before.  The third tag has Cavallini & co butterflies stamped in Picket Fence distress stain on the background and Indigo Blu flower and butterfly stamped over the top in black archival.  All tags have been finished with random bits of ribbon, lace and charms.  Not sure if that key is a bit big for the first tag but isn't it fabulous! was a wonderful find in Primark with 9 keys on a necklace for about £3!! bargain.

These are a replay of this mornings tag - aren't they so much better!  The first two tags have Spiced Marmalade, Mustard Seed, Broken China and Barn door distress inks on the background along with Heirloom Gold Perfect Pearls, Iced Jade and Emerald Sparkle Cosmic Shimmers.  Interestingly they are both from the same batch of inks with the first one created with the first pass through of inks and the second one used with the remaining inks on the sheet - don't they look different!  I stamped the birdcages and birds with black archival - the first one I managed to mess up as I stamped the bird first and then the birdcage and it looked so obvious that the cage was over the bird but I rescued it by restamping over the bird with Picket Fence distress stain - I am so glad that I have learnt this technique as it made a fabulous finish to a piece of artwork that last week would have probably ended up in the bin!  Both tags have been finished with Vintage Photo around the edge and then some of T!ms new sizzix flowers, vintage lace, a charm and some ribbons.

The third tag is a replay of the inked tag (Tea Dye) dried and then the birdcage stamped out in Walnut Stain, Fired Brick and Aged Mahogany with Heirloom Gold perfect pearls I then sprayed this with water (a lot less this time!) and dried it and then stamped out the bird with Vintage Photo, Crushed Olive and Wild Honey and again Heirloom Gold perfects pearls.  Finished this tag with Vintage Photo around the edge, Vintage Lace, new sizzix flowers, ribbons and a charm.

All in all a very pleasant afternoon!

Thanks for looking - All tagged out from Solihull

Creative Chemistry Day 9

Flying visit from me today as Thursdays are a busy day for me - I have managed to get through the three techniques before school run this morning but am not particularly happy with the second one - I think these tags need a bit more time spent on them rather than just rushing through with the techniques - however this is a technique class and I do like to keep all things I make in a class so I can look back and see what I like and what I don't and learn from it!

For tag 1, I only have the Heirloom Gold Perfect Pearl mist and I didn't want to use the only ink and water mix I made up the other day in the only Mini Mister bottle I have so I have used Jazz Blue and Cranberry Zing glimmer mists instead - lovely results all the same.
For tag 2 I inked the tag in Tea Dye and dried it, then I discovered that I had the same stamp as T!m squirreled away although mine is an acrylic stamp so is slightly smaller.  I stamped this in Walnut Stain, Aged Mahogany and Fired Brick and then covered it with Heirloom Gold Perfect Pearls.  I think I sprayed too much water on it as it is more washed out than T!ms image but this can be perfected on my next attempt!
For tag 3 I put Fired Brick, Vintage Photo, Broken China and Crushed Olive inks on my mat and then added Heirloom Gold perfect pearls, Jays Blue Velvet Lustre from Blonde Moments and Festive Candy lustre again from Blonde Moments, then sprayed and swooshed - love this effect.  I then inked the tag with Broken China, Wild Honey, Broken China, Fired Brick and Vintage Photo.

Am loving all these effects!  If anyone can think where I could have possibly safely stored my tags from day 7 please let me know - they aren't in the box with all the others and I know I definately made them because I blogged them!!

Thanks for looking - Too busy to search for lost tags from Solihull

Edited to add: I have had a lovely play day this afternoon and recreated some more tags (and they are a vast improvement on the ones above!) - they are here if you would like to check them out.  Oh and I have found yesterdays tags too! they were hidden amongst my stamps of all places!

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Creative Chemistry Day 8

Up a bit later today although I managed to watch half the video before I took DS2 early to school for his Judo class, went to the hairdressers and then met my friend for a coffee and a bit of retail therapy - so my tags were nice and crackled when I got back this lunchtime, here are my tags for today:

Tag 1: Here I used canvas! (not used this before but I treated myself to a pack last week when I went to the NEC show – have always put it off as its £10 for 5 sheets but there wasn’t much else I wanted so I thought it was time I moved on and got some!).  The stamp is an old one of T!ms and I used a pearl acrylic dabber.  Then I inked it with Wild Honey, Worn Lipstick, Broken China, Vintage Photo and Peeled Paint stains.  Fabulous stuff though so I am glad I caved in and got some.

Tags 2:  Did two of these – both the same but I used Fired Brick crackle on one and Antique Linen on the other.  Stains used were Broken China, Wild Honey, Peeled Paint and Vintage Photo directly onto manila tags.  Edges and stamps were done with Vintage Photo with the main image stamped with Coffee Archival ink.

Tag 3: The birdies are cut from mountboard with a sizzix die, coated with Rock Candy crackle - although I think I have put it on a bit too thin so will have to replay around with these again another day.  Stains used were Mustard Seed, Broken China, Barn Door, Vintage Photo and Spiced Marmalade, tag is simply inked round with Vintage Photo and Walnut Stain.

A big hi to Creatique Candy - thanks for following me :)
Thanks for looking - off to do the ironing now much less fun!  Chilled from Solihull

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Creative Chemistry Day 7

I am done first thing in the morning again!  Everyone still asleep upstairs too!  Today I have basically copied T!ms tags straight off but just used stamps from his Artful Flight set instead:

For tag one I used Barn Door for the bird, Crushed Olive, Broken China, Tea Dye, Vintage Photo and Wild Honey for the background with Black Soot for the other images.  I then I ironed it too! don't think I have ever ironed at 6.50am before!  Normally I would leave the powder as is as I like the raised shiny look but as this is a class I thought I would use it as a new technique and now I love this way too!  Knowing me I will now have to make two pieces of artwork each time I use this technique - one to iron and one to leave as is!!!

For tag two I followed T!ms instructions and used Evergreen Bough, Vintage Photo and Walnut Stain - love this effect too.

For tag three I used Dried Marigold Distress Embossing Powder on a clear embossing ink, then Crushed Olive, Walnut Stain, Broken China, Wild Honey and Barn Door distress ink.  Love this tag too.

Can I also just say a big hello to Jenny Sullivan - thank you following me!

Thanks for looking - Learnt Lots Already Today from Solihull

Monday, 26 March 2012

Creative Chemistry Day 6

A very quick play from me this morning - in fact so quick the rest of the household are still all in bed!

I don't have any distress markers (woe is me!) but I still didn't want to miss out on the opportunity of a quiet house and a chance to play with my inks so I have followed the distress markers techniques using distress ink pads a blender pen, here are the results:

The butterflies are from a set by Cavallini & co.
First tag is on watercolour paper with the large butterfly the ink was applied on dry paper and the smaller one on wet - inks used are Wild Honey, Spiced Marmalade and Barn Door and then Spun Sugar, Victorian Velvet and Broken China and I edged the piece with Dusty Concord and Seedless Preserves - all bodies throughout have been coloured in using Peeled Paint.

The second tag is exactly the same but here I used glossy paper and left the edges of the artwork plain.

For the third tag I used the same colour inks with the colours been applied directly to the stamp - love this technique.  Tag is edged with Frayed Burlap and Vintage Photo.

Will definately use watercolour paper for the third technique again but I wasn't so keen on colouring directly onto the paper with a blender pen - much prefer to use a water pen - so in the future I will probably just use the technique on glossy paper.  Obviously I will invest in distress markers at some point so I will have a play with these techniques again then too.
Thanks for looking - Enjoying the Peace and Quiet from Solihull.

Edited to add:  Ooooh I am first on the list! see there are some bonuses at getting up at 5am!!

also remember I said on Friday that I had caved in and ordered some Inkssentials tags online to see the differences - well they turned up on Saturday morning and I had a quick chance to have a play using the same items and look at the results:

they are so much better - glad I made the investment now!!! will so be using these tags from now on!  Hopefully I will get a few mins later in the day to have a go at today's blending techniques on my Stampin Up paper (which I use for my Promarkers) to see if that is better than watercolour paper - must dash can hear little people stirring above......  Thanks for looking (again!).

Friday, 23 March 2012

Creative Chemistry Day 5

Not had much success art wise today - have a stinking cold though so I think it's having an effect on me!

I went to my art class this morning but wasn't happy with anything I produced there - we painted a silver birch, a small sea scene, some pebbles and a post in water but I will have to redo them all when I am feeling a bit better.

Have had a go at the tags today too but again they aren't my best efforts!

to start with I have realised that I am using the wrong type of cardstock - look at my second tag the inks didn't blend at all - the two smaller tags are on manilla shipping tags but I still don't seem to have the same results as T!m so I have caved in and ordered some Inkssential tags online which will hopefully arrive tomorrow and I will have another bash at them.

I know the first tag has come out really dark in the picture but this is the one that is actually fine in real life!!  I used Chipped Sapphire, Barn Door, Gathered Twigs and Wild Honey distress inks and the stamps are from T!ms Artful Flight set.

For the second and third tags I used Barn Door, Spiced Marmalade, Peeled Paint and Mustard Seed stains with Faded Jeans stain on the first one and Broken China stain on the second and the stamps are T!ms Haberdashery set.  My Picket Fence images didn't come out well at all so I didn't even bother heat setting them - these are the tags I will retry again when I get better cardstock.

For the last tag I again used a Manilla Shipping Tag but I have to confess that I have managed much better results than this in the past on a plain cream cardstock but I am fairly happy with it to go in my Technique book as is.  I used Picket Fence, Mustard Seed, Peeled Paint, Spiced Marmalade, Fired Brick and Broken China stains and the stamps are from T!ms Nature's Discovery set.

Thanks for looking - All Bunged Up from Solihull

EDITED to add:
I have just relooked at my post and can't possibly leave you all looking at the dark and dingy first tag so here it is after a bit of tweeking:
the birdie is actually perched on a nest!  Oh for a bit more sunshine so we can take better photos eh! 

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Creative Chemistry Day 4

And here is Day 4 - better late than never eh!  Was disappointed I couldn't watch the videos this morning before spending the day at Hobbycrafts/Sewing for Pleasure at the NEC but then it was probably a good thing as I would no doubt have ended up buying a couple more reinkers or something!!

Here are my takes on the tags:

My colouring skills with distress inks just aren't the best - I don't know why as I am getting on really well with my watercolour class but I don't seem to be able to blend light to dark with inks at the moment - need a lot more practice I guess!  Anyway the first tag was stamped with one of T!ms collage stamps and coloured in with Wethered Wood, Barn Door (which I did the dress in before I noticed that there was a handbag and - shock horror - I then realised that I didn't have a suitable colour to give the girl a nice co-ordinating handbag and gloves! so I went for Forest Green to give her a Christmassy look, Spun Sugar and Vintage Photo, I then inked the edges of the cardstock with Broken China and Vintage Photo and mounted it onto a Broken China and Vintage Photo tag.

For the second tag I had to cheat and use Jazz Blue Glimmer Mist as I only have two little applicator bottles but I did make up the Barn Door and Wild Honey ones.  I then used a Creative Expressions cog screen with Rich Gold Glimmer Mist over the top - it doesn't come out well on the photo but looks fabulous in real life.

For the last tag I cheated as I had used this technique to make some Christmas cards when following the 12 Tags of Christmas 2011 so I dug out the old piece of felt I used then and reinked up the stamp and hey presto it still worked!  As the piece was so tiny on the tag though I just had to have a little simple background so I stamped out some snowflakes in Stonewashed Adirondack ink and then inked the tag with Broken China distress, and that still wasn't quite enough so I had to just fill up the rest of the "white" space with a lovely Santa and sentiment stamp.

And here is another little quick practice piece with the watercolouring technique:

Told you I liked skulls didn't I! 

I would also just like to say a big hello to both Kim Rood and Playtime - thank you both for following me :)

Thanks for looking - All Shopped Out from Solihull

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Creative Chemistry Day 3

Oooh what fun these were - I love playing around with alcohol inks, unfortunately I don't have any glossy cardstock so I have used glossy photo paper - I know T!m said not to but I don't want to nip out to the shops today as I am going to Hobbycrafts at the NEC tomorrow - whoo hoo! - so I will get some there instead and have another play with the proper tools at a later date!  Here are my creations so far though:

For the first tag I used Red Pepper, Denim and Snow Cap inks – the stamps are Creative Journey (the London scene), Artemio London Stamps and an old script stamp.

For the second tag I used a Prima brick wall stamp, Stampers Anonymous Mini Muse stamps, using Stazon in Mustard and Pumpkin (I only have two archival inks :( ) and Crimson Archival ink, Broken China distress ink then I used Black Archival ink to stamp out the Stampers Anonymous Haberdashery stamps.

For the third I used the Stampers Anonymous Reflections script stamp and Mini Muse skull.  Broken China, Vintage Photo, Crushed Olive and Dusty Concord distress inks.  For the back tag (I know I said I wasn’t going to finish any tags off as these are just to keep together for a techniques book but I have a soft spot for pirates and skulls so I had to put a bit extra on – it’s not like I have added lots of embellishments or ribbons is it!) – I used Milled Lavender, Dusty Concord and Vintage Photo along with the same Stampers Anonymous skull stamp and two Magnolia pirate stamps.  I have only got the small embossing folders with lots of empty space on as all the bigger ones I have emboss all over and although I have used the technique with reflections stamps on the folders before I haven't put another stamp directly on there as well (in this case the skull) so this was a fun thing to learn - can't wait to make some more now!

I also have a top tip for alcohol inks - put a blob of them onto pieces of acetate and label them so that you know what the finished colour is going to be, here are mine:

It's a very useful guide to use as the colours all look the same in the bottles.

Thanks for looking and enjoying my Creative Chemistry journey with me!  Still Happy Learning from Solihull.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Creative Chemistry Day 2

So here are my first set of tags for this fun class:

Tag 1: Peeled Paint, Spiced Marmalade, Mustard Seed, Barn Door, Broken China, Tea Dye and Vintage Photo.

Tag2: Mustard Seed, Peeled Paint, Barn Door, Spiced Marmalade, Broken China, Forest Moss and Iced Spruce - stamp is from Artful Flight by Stampers Anonymous mounted onto barn door inked tag.

Tag 3: Wild Honey, Milled Lavender, Peeled Paint, Mustard Seed, Barn Door, Broken China and Vintage Photo.

Desperately want to add a bit of perfect pearls to the two end tags - but I won't! Honest! will keep the tags as taught in the class.

Have done all these techniques before but still learn't a couple of things today so am very glad I took the plunge to take the class.

Thanks for looking - Loving to learn from Solihull.

Saturday, 17 March 2012

March Crop Class

It's my turn next week to do the crop class and my technique this time is a different way to distress edges - I have already uploaded a picture of this on the What Housework blog but I looked at it yesterday afternoon and decided it needed something else so this morning (it's looking like my mojo has returned as I have done this and now have the urge to do a scrapbook layout too! we shall see though as I have a busy two days this weekend (don't we always!!), so I have added a little cluster of handmade embellishments in the bottom left hand corner:

and have added some journalling to the hidden tag:

Thanks for looking - Feeling creative from Solihull

Friday, 16 March 2012

Tims March Tag

The theme over on Tim's blog this month is mosaics.  In order to keep my British theme I decided my mosaics would take the form of Union Flags in a bunting:

For this tag I have used:  Artemio London Stamps (the crown, Tower Bridge and the Union flag), Creative Journey London Stamp (the Police Box).  The inks I have used are:  Black and Crimson archival inks, Stonewashed Adirondack, Walnut Stain and Frayed Burlap distress inks along with Barn Door and Broken China stains for the ribbons.  The tag is sprayed with Heirloom Gold Perfect Pearls, the background image is actually a Couture Creations embossing folder of a World Map which I inked with Broken China and used as a stamp.  The flags are finished off with Judikins White embossing powder and glossy accents and then I finished the crown with bling and the bunting is held up with hemp (the expensive one no less!).  The tag is laid out on my dining room tablecloth which explains the leaning Big Ben next to it!

Took me an age to get the flags right - here are some disasters along the way:

The first one shows that Tim is right and other double sided tapes shrink with the heat!, the second is how all of my flags actually turned out until I realised that I could peel off the top layer of all the card pieces to get it looking better (as they are covered over in glossy accents it doesnt matter that they have been peeled down a layer), the third flag is a proper mosaic (using tiny pieces of cut up card) again this time I filled in the gaps with glitter but I still preferred the finish of the embossing powder so I redid the tag with larger pieces of mosaic bits which looked far better but then I didn't like the way I had cut the middle section into five so then I had to make another three flags which were the ones that have ended up on the finished version - took me hours this!  still they were happy hours.....

Thanks for looking - Relaxed from Solihull

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Two years in the making

and it's still not quite finished but here is my Mandy Shaw quilt that I have been working on lately:

it's not quite finished as I still have a few ends to sew in on the back and also I need to add quite a few buttons (for birdies eyes, apples on trees, door handles and such like) and also add some charms to the title piece and centre piece.  I will have this as a work in progress though so it might still take me another two years to finish it completely!

Here are a couple of closeups:

This is the centre piece, it represents my family and the things I love - it still needs quite a few buttons and I have a load of lovely charms to add to it too.  Still pondering on how to jazz up the mannequin - any ideas gratefully received!

I like to think that this is me and my friend Louise going off to the quilt show!  (Malvern quilt show is only in a few weeks too - whoo hoo).

Sewing machine block - this just needs a button on the cupcake and it will be done.

I would also just like to say thank you everyone for all your good wishes, cards, flowers, emails and texts during this sad time for me - they have all helped immensely.

Thanks for looking - a bit chirpier and all sewn out from Solihull