Thursday, September 25, 2014

making magic...

Hello my wonderful friends!

It's time for another Unity hop!
(and sale!)

I can't believe we're at 40,000 FB friends… You guys are seriously AWESOME!

If you are arriving here from Kary's blog you are right on track... if not, go ahead and start at the beginning by clicking HERE.. You don't want to miss any of the fabulous inspiration (or chances to win!)

So, ya wanna know what I've been doing the past few days?

(KOM subscription freebe, 25 Days of Christmas)

This, my friends, is 60 Christmas cards! Yes, you read that right! Funny story about it… I went to a Scout fundraiser to help decorate. I stayed for it because my ride was helping with the auction. I took the cards to work on watercoloring them… might as well be productive while waiting, right? A friend of mine saw me and asked about them… The next day, he saw me again and asked if they were done yet… UMMM I've got SIXTY to hand color…nope, I'm not done yet! Ha! 

It actually did go fairly fast. I started them Saturday, and finished gluing them together Tuesday night…. Yup, I'm pretty proud of that! Now on to the 60 gifts to go with them.. then the birthday cards and gifts for next year… Sigh… I hope the kids like them!

I love background stamps… and the Chicken Wire Background is one of my most used Unity backgrounds! I love how subtle yet effective it is with the tone on tone stamping!  The sentiment is a fun one from the new Thanks & Giving kit (released today!!!). I love how it can be used as either an element or focal point in a card. Yay for awesomely designed stamps! And that flower from this month's KOM… yeah, be still my heart, LOVE. (actually, there are several heart-stealers in that kit!)

When I was making this card, I decided to pull out my Lindy's Stamp Gang Flat Magicals. (these are a HIGHLY pigmented powders with a built in binder, so you just need to add water or other wet medium… So much fun to work with!)

There are TONS of ways to use the Magicals powders, but here is one that I ADORE because it is super simple yet the end result looks complex, and is distinctively unique each time…

Step 1: Ink up your stamp with a clear embossing ink and stamp onto your paper. Different papers will give you different results… I like to use a mixed media or watercolor paper because I like the play it gives the water…

Step 2: Use a DRY paint brush to dust Magical colors over your image. You have all the control you want… brush colors on randomly, or carefully apply to specific areas.. your choice. They will be dull and blasé right now, but don't worry. 
(yeah, so my stamped image didn't come out completely clear… that's what I get for not cleaning my stamps real well… it still works, and ended up showing up better for the picts. LOL!)

Step 3: Here is where the "magic" part of Magicals takes place… once you are done painting on the powder, dust off the excess, then lightly mist with water… the colors will POP.. so will all the stray specs of powder that you didn't even know were still on the paper. 

One of the fun things about Magicals is how they are made… each color is NOT made up of an individual pigment… instead, it is the combination of multiple pigment particles. They blend wonderfully when stirred into water or other medium, but when you just spritz lightly with water, you get speckles of differential colors.. SO FUN! 

Be careful not to over spray.. if it gets too wet, the colors will all just run and bleed… great for backgrounds, not so great for a stamped image. 

And, as a bonus tip… if you are looking for a fun way to add just a touch of dimension and texture, try Ranger's Enamel Accents… it comes in Black and White…it's like Glossy Accents but opaque. Supper fun. If you make dots with it, the peak will sink into it, leaving you with a beautiful dome. Yup, pretty awesome!

Don't forget---
 Leave a comment on EACH blog in the hop (including the Unity blog) for your chance to win.  The winners will be announced Saturday night on the Unity blog.

Your next stop is Lisa!


Thursday, September 18, 2014

Play date with Faber Castell and Unity...

Hello my fabulous friends!

Have you been having a blast with the Unity & Faber Castell Hop? I hope so! So much awesomeness!

We've got some ADORABLE new Angiegirl stamps at Unity…along with some great deals! Don't forget to do some shopping this weekend after the hop. :)

I ADORE this cut bird! It's a freebe for those who are members of the KOTM club. How stickin' awesome is that?!?   The sentiment is from Warmth and Winter Wishes.

I used Gelatos and a water brush to color them… by mixing the colors just a few colors, you can get a lot of depth and variations. Super fun!

I stamped an extra bird and fussy cut it… I then attached it to the card using foam tape for some fun dimension.

Another fabulous thing to do with Gelatos is stamping… Simply scribble the Gelatos directly not a stamp, mist with a little water, then stamp. I used Moments in Bloom  Now, of course I needed some matching ribbon, so I tried one of my favorite tricks. Guess what? It worked!

Gelato Crinkle Ribbon

Step 1: Scribble various Gelatos onto 100% rayon seam binding (this can be found with sewing stuff)

Step 2: Spritz with water and scrunch up in a ball

Step 3: Allow to dry, or hit it with a heat tool… 
You end up with a beautifully variegated  crinkle ribbon!

Well, that's it for me! If you haven't stopped by the Faber Castell blog, make sure you do! So much fabulous talent! Seriously! (plus, they have a prize up for grabs too!)

Thanks Faber Castell for teaming up with us! You guys are awesome!

 Don't forget to leave a comment on all the blogs...You have until 9-21 to comment and have a chance at this amazing prize!  Good luck!


Thursday, September 11, 2014

fall and winter...

Hello my wonderful friends!

It's time for another Unity hop!
(and sale!)

If you are arriving here from Kary's blog you are right on track... if not, go ahead and start at the beginning by clicking HERE.. You don't want to miss any of the fabulous inspiration (or chances to win!)

I love fall… the crisp air, the cooler days, the colorful leaves…and sweaters. I love sweaters!
One thing I'm not so fond of, is the critters that have decided that the huge forest behind the house isn't big enough for them, and they move in. I've had bugs. My parents have had this…

Yes, that would be baby mice. Super cute…just not in the kitchen drawer! We'll call it motivation to deep clean the kitchen…and the living room…and the bedrooms… and…

While my parents are having 'fun' cleaning, I've been getting messy!

If you haven't noticed by now, a NEW challenge is up at the Unity blog, and we'd love to see what YOU do with it!

Here's my take on the colors…I promise there are browns and greens in there, but I ran out of sunlight to take the picture! I used a stencil and modeling paste to get the patchy brickwork, then covered it in Distress Inks. I used Archival ink to stamp the sentiment and flowers from the kit "Create Today" (one of my favorites!

Along with the challenge, I decided I needed to get started on Christmas cards… I have SO MANY to make!  The sentiment comes from an older kit "25 Days of Christmas", while the background snowflake comes from this month's KOM "Happy, Thankful & Blessed" (totally LOVE this kit!).

Have you started Christmas yet? Either way, I'll tell you a little secret.. more winter & Christmas stamps are coming, and they are FAB! *shhhhhhhhh!* 

And for a little inspiration for you… allow me to walk you through the different techniques I used on the snow card… use any or all and have fun making your own backgrounds!

Step1: "Ink" up stamp with a light acrylic paint. I'm using a metallic silver. Very subtle, but gorgeous! (white works as a great, bolder resist!) This snowflake is from the "Happy, Thankful & Blessed" kit.

Step 2: Stamp onto paper. I'm using a mixed media paper because I like how the inks blend on it in the next steps.

(Repeat steps 1-2 until satisfied.)

Step 3: Apply various colors of Distress ink using a blending tool or sponge. I used Broken China, Faded Jeans, and Chipped Sapphire.

Step 4: Spritz/splatter some water onto the inked background. Allow the water to sit for a few seconds, then dab with a paper towel or cloth. this will lift the ink leaving snowy watermarks.

Step 5: Spritz a stamp with water. (I'm using the same snowflake, but you could change it up… there's another great snowflake in the same kit!)

Step 6: Stamp your watered image onto the background, then, just like with the water drops, dab it with a paper towel. This leaves an awesome ghost image! (this is a great stand-alone technique!)

Step 7: For a vintage-y feel, add a little brown Distress ink to the edges.. I used Gathered Twigs.

Step 8: For a little texture and wintery glitz, spread a very thin amount of Faber Castell's Glass Bead  Glitter gel along the edges.  

Check it out! You can't see the awesome texture the glass beads give it, but you can see that sparkle.. also, notice that since we went around the edges with Distress ink, and Distress ink activates with moisture, the gel picks up the color and blends it into gorgeousness! (It's really a ton better in person!)

Don't forget---
 Leave a comment on EACH blog in the hop (including the Unity blog) for your chance to win.  The winners will be announced Saturday night on the Unity blog.

Your next stop is Rachel!


Tuesday, September 2, 2014

a little re-fashioning….

Hello my FABULOUS friends, and happy Tuesday!
I hope you had a wonderful weekend!

Lately, I've been drooling over the CUTE unity shirts that have recently been added to the Unity site… (check it out HERE) and since I don't have one *YET*, I figured why not breathe new life into an old shirt with a little Unity of my own?

Did you know that you DON'T have to buy a whole bunch of fancy fabric paint to paint fabric? Check this out!
It's a clear textile medium that you mix in with the acrylic paint you already have sitting around your studio, and BOOM! You got fabric paint! SWEET!  You can find this with the bottles of cheap acrylic paint at stores like JoAnn or Michaels. Or you can check it out HERE. There are a bunch of different brands that sell this stuff, so see what you can find!

Now on to the fun stuff!

Step 1: Following the directions on the bottle, mix your paint and textile medium. (this brand is a 2 parts paint to 1 part medium ratio)

Step 2: Ink up your stamp with the paint mixture… 
I'm using a BRAND NEW stamp from this month's Layers of Life kit… check it out HERE

Step 3: Stamp onto your fabric. I like to tape my fabric down to a piece of cardboard to help keep it in place and taunt.

*If you find that parts of the image didn't stamp well, you can use a small paint brush to fill in the gaps… personally I like the grungy, worn look, so I left it imperfect. 

Step 4: Allow to air dry following directions on the textile medium bottle… for me that was 24 hours.

Step 5: Heat set with an iron.

Now, we could totally leave it there… but, as I was told the other day "You are artistic, you like pretty things" Why, yes, yes I do. I like pretty things that have just the right amount of glitz, without being too flashy… 


Step 6: a few strategically place rhinestones…

(yeah, I'm no model… but I had to see what it looked like on!)

Now… what other clothes do I have that need a little jazzing up? (this could get dangerous! LOL!)