Monday, 14 September 2020

Lost In The Darkness...

Hello friends and happy Monday...

Hope you've all had a good weekend and you're now ready for the week ahead and the brand new Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge! This week our theme is called FRAME IT and with so many possibilities, we would love for you to join us and play along with this fun challenge.

For my project, I created an Etcetera tag using some of the brand new Stampers Anonymous stamp sets from Tim Holtz, including the really popular Specimen set which is definitely one of my favourites from the release and a must have for your collections! There is also a little surprise to this piece, which you can look out for further along in this post...

So, let's get started and welcome the uninvited guest to my blog...

To begin with I took the small sized Etcetera Tag, 5.5" x 10" and using the Spider Web Thinlits Die Set, I cut a few of the webs from Mixed Media Heavystock card ~ you will probably need approx 5 webs. I then adhered the webs onto my tag using Matte Collage Medium and arranging them all over the tag surface.

Moving onto the next stage, I added some texture around the edges and for this I used Translucent Grit Paste. I usually use my finger to apply the paste ~ I just find they give me an even coverage but you can also use a palette knife or any other tool of your choosing and once you've added the paste, allow to completely set.

Once the webs and the pasted areas were dry and securely in place, I primed the tag with a coat of black gesso, allowed for it to dry before then applying a layer of Black Soot Distress Paint over the surface. You can gently heat dry the surface but be careful of the pasted areas, too much heat will cause these to bubble and disintegrate.

After drying the surface, I then used a combination of Metallic Distress Crayons and Alchemy Waxes in Old Silver, Vintage Gold, and applied the wax and crayons over the top of the raised die cut webs and the pasted areas, and then using my fingertip to blend it onto the surface.

For the hole reinforcer piece, I added some Crackle Paste to the circle, allowed for the crackles to appear and then used a light wash of Black Soot Distress Paint over the top. Attach the piece over the hole at the top of the tag with Matte Collage Medium.

Now to create the layered frames and for this I used a combination of the a Vignette Frame, and two Baseboard Frames.

Paint the surface of the wooden frame with Black Soot Distress Paint and once dry, I used the same combination of waxes to accentuate the beadwork on the frame. Attach the frame to the tag.

I then took two of the baseboard frames and layered a smaller one over the larger one, attaching them with Matte Collage Medium. Apply paste around the edges of the frames using a little more of the Translucent Grit Paste and once dry, I used Black Soot, Antiqued Bronze and Rusty Hinge Distress Paints to add colour and create a gnarly, rusty finish. Layer each of the paints, one at a time, over the pasted areas and heat dry between each application. 

Ensure that the paint is thoroughly dry before adding a touch of the Gilding Waxes over the top.

Now for the treat...this panel is going to be lit from a vellum panel set inside the frames!

...and for this, I used the Vellum Haunts. These are a set of beautiful transparent panels in various sizes that can be used as I have with lights or just to add a decorative panel behind your embellishments. I chose the webs to continue my background theme and cut a section of the panel which I then stuck using red line tape, behind my layered frames.

For the lights, I used the orange set of Halloween Tiny Lights by Tim Holtz and after boring a small hole through the back of the tag using a drill, I then threaded the wire string of lights through to the front. Arrange the lights and attach them onto the inside of the frames.

Mount the baseboard frames over the top of the painted wooden frame already attached to the tag and adhere with Matte Collage Medium. Once you flick the switch, the lights will shine through from behind, giving a warm, mysterious glow.
To complete the frames, I attached some Mummy Cloth. I dyed the cloth using Frayed Burlap and Pumice Stone Distress Spray Stains and then attached the dry cloth around the outside using Matte Collage Medium but also hammering a couple of nails into the top as a decorative detail.

Now for that beautiful butterfly which I stamped onto Distress Watercolour Card and water-coloured the image with Distress Inks and Marker Pens ~ Crackling Campfire, Gathered Twigs, Peeled Paint, Bundled Sage and Speckled Egg.

I then stamped a pair of hands, using the stamp in the Anatomy Chart set and coloured these with Polychromos Pencils.

Fussy cut around the outline of all the stamped images before attaching the butterfly to the vellum panel, shaping the wings slightly either side to make it look as if it's in flight. Add the bony hands to either side of the butterfly to appear as if it's reaching out to capture it.


Beneath the images, I added a Quote Chip from the Halloween Baseboards set. I punched a hole in either end of the chip and wrapped some twine, securing the ends at the back of the chip.

Attach the quote onto the lower section of the frame.

We're nearly there and all that's left is to add some details...

...underneath the frame I placed a Measurements ruler piece, attaching with Matte Collage Medium and adding some Hardware Heads and a few pieces of metal hardware. Just as I added some texture to the edges with the Translucent Grit Paste, I added some more of the paste around the edges of the ruler. Once this was dry, I used the same combination of Distress Paints, layering the colours to add that rusty crusty goodness.

Finally, at the top of the frames, I added a small number from the Curiosities Sticker Book.

So, that completes my tag for this week and I hope you've loved how I bought this wicked tale to life and how I used tiny lights to illuminate the piece which will be perfect to add amongst my Halloween decorations for 2020!

Don't forget, if you would like to see more inspiration from my talented teamies over on the challenge blog and every week, one lucky random participant has the chance to win a $25 gift voucher from Simon Says Stamp and you can join in up to 5 times, which means you could have 5 chances to winYou have until Monday 8am Ohio time. 1pm UK time, 2 pm CET to join in and good luck....









Thank you so much for taking the time to stop by today ~ stay safe and well, and see you again soon, love Emma xxx

Monday, 7 September 2020

Great Things Are Ahead...

Happy Monday friends...

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend, it was definitely a busy one here and time has flown by ~ one minute it was Saturday morning and now, it's the start of a brand new week! But that means it's also the start of a brand new challenge over on the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge Blog and of course, with it being September, we are celebrating STAMPtember at SSS and the DT are hoping you will join in the fun with our challenge theme~ USE YOUR FAVOURITE STAMP!

For my project, I combined a few of my favourite stamps to create background layers but I also chose to use one in particular ~ it might not be large but it comes from my all time favourite Simon Says Stamp, stamp set...Tiny Words Encouragement! This set is packed full of inspirational quotes and sentiments and I just LOVE it so much ~ time, and time again I will come back to it and use it as a feature on a project and this vintage style autumnal tag full was inspired by one of the sentiments in this set.

 So let's get started, it's time to celebrate STAMPtember....


To begin with I created the background for my tag and for this I used a Size 8 Tim Holtz Distress Mixed Media Heavystock Tag as my substrate.

I laid the Countdown Layering Stencil over the top of the tag and then spritzed Distress Resist Spray through the stencil. Remove the stencil and place into soapy water immediately to wash off any trace of the medium and then going back to the tag, I began layering the colour over the top. To be honest, I inked the tag a while ago and have had it in my stash of surfaces for when I need them, so saying that ~ I'm not quite sure about the stains I used but from memory, I believe it was Ground Espresso, Chipped Sapphire, Speckled Egg and Rusty Hinge Spray Stains, each of them layered over one another to reveal the design of the stencil where the Resist Spray has been misted. This is such a cool effect and creates some amazing backgrounds.
Once I was happy, I dried the tag, inked the edge with Ground Espresso DI and machine stitched a border around the edge.

To add some more interest to the background and create some layers, I used another of my favourite 'go-to' stamps ~ the script stamp from the Tiny Toadstools Stampers Anonymous set by Tim Holtz and stamped in Black Soot Archival Ink onto random areas of the background.
...and then used another trusty favourite, the postmark stamp taken from the Field Notes stamp set which I stamped in the bottom left hand corner.
To complete the background I ripped a piece of corrugated cardboard that I painted using Distress Paints and placed this across the bottom section of my tag before adhering the card tag to a more substantial Etcetera Tag as I will be adding quite a few layers

I then cut a strip of Mummy Cloth, dyed with Speckled Egg Distress Spray Stain and wrapped this around the middle of the tag, tying it in a knot to secure it into place.

So I now have the background ready to embellish with that arrangement of leaves...
...and for this I started by using a beautiful die from the brand new Simon Says Stamp STAMPtember release, the Etched Laurel Leaves which I coloured using a combination of Speckled Egg Distress Spray Stain and Oxide Spray, Fossilized Amber, Barn Door and Frayed Burlap Spray Stain and the amazing new colour that's just been added to Tim Holtz's Distress Range, Crackling Campfire. I spritzed each of the inks onto Heavystock Mixed Media card, drying each layer before adding the next but it was Crackling Campfire that shone the brightest and gave the leaves that stunning autumnal richness!

After die cutting my leaves from the inked card, I then added some of the Crackling Campfire Embossing Glaze to add even more intensity of colour. To do this, I lightly kissed the leaves with the Embossing Dabber and then sprinkled some Crackling Campfire glaze over the top before heat embossing until molten. I then repeated the process but this time I used gold embossing powder, once again heated until molten.

After shaping each of the stems to create a more realistic look, I arranged the leaves to cascade down the right hand side of the tag, placing them so that they overlapped the edge of the tag and also had some height and dimension between each die cut.

I now moved onto to colouring the photo booth image. For this particular image I went with Distress Crayons, and applied the medium using a water brush which helps to blend the colour. I also always apply clear gesso to prime the surface of the photos before I add colour ~ this really gives a good foundation for adding any mediums over the top. For more information about colouring these images, then you can pop over to the very talented Paula Cheney's blog, she has so much inspiration and a detailed tutorial HERE ~ I know I'm always inspired by her beautiful work!
I mounted my coloured image onto some burlap, using the sewing machine to attach the image to the material.

I really wanted some dimension to this piece and to create this, I added foam pads to the back of the photo and built them up before attaching it over the top of my layering leaves.
For the sentiment that sits across the photo I cut a small banner strip, with an inverted 'v' at each end, from an off-cut of previously inked mixed media heavy stock card and taking one of the stamps from the Tiny Words Encouragement set, I stamped 'Great Things Are Ahead" onto the strip using Barn Door Archival Ink. I then inked the edge with Gathered Twigs Distress Ink before tying some cotton thread around either side of the strip. Attach the sentiment across the photo using foam pads on the back.
You might have noticed that in amongst the foliage, I've added some tiny flowers. I wanted these to be just a subtle touch, not to add colour and used Tim's Bouquet Findings which I spritzed with some more of that Crackling Campfire Distress Spray Stain. After carefully heat drying the flower heads, I snipped them to separate each individual flower and attached them with Matte Collage Medium, placing them amongst the leaves. As a finishing touch, I added Platinum Stickles Glitter Glue to the centres of each flower.
We're nearly there and it's just the details that need to be added...

...and started by adding a Mini Paperclip in the top right hand corner to the photo and an Heirloom Rose in the opposite corner.
I also attached some Hardware Heads and a Machinery Head embellishment down the right hand side of the tag which I altered with some Alcohol Inks ~ Rust, Pitch Black and Gold Mixative which create a rusty effect to the metal.
Finally, I added a Hinge Clip, painted and altered with Evergreen Bough, Antiqued Bronze and Pitch Black Distress Paint and clipped this to the top of the tag.
So, that completes this week's project and I hope you've enjoyed the creative process and all the techniques I've used to create all the dimension and layers I've added. It sure was a fun project to work on...
Don't forget, if you would like to see more inspiration from my talented teamies over on the challenge blog and every week, one lucky random participant has the chance to win a $25 gift voucher from Simon Says Stamp and you can join in up to 5 times, which means you could have 5 chances to winYou have until Monday 8am Ohio time. 1pm UK time, 2 pm CET to join in and good luck....









Thank you so much for taking the time to stop by today ~ stay safe and well, and see you again soon, love Emma xxx

Recipe for project:

SSS products: Tiny Words Encouragement, Etched Laurel Leaves

Wednesday, 26 August 2020

Open Day Or Night...

Hello friends...

Hope you're all well and having a good week! Today, I'm back on the blog to share a project that I created for the Tim Holtz idea-ology Halloween Facebook Live ~ the Open Day Or Night Vignette Box! Before I share all the details of this box, I just wanted to say thank you because I have had so many wonderful messages saying how much you loved this particular project and asking when I'll be posting it...so, I'm sorry I've made you wait but today's the day you finally get to meet the evil doctor in person, a man of medicine who is always open for business, day...

....and night!

So, let's get started and and I'll be showing you all the details of how I created that tiny light bulb that sits in the back of the box, together with those little books that sit on the bookshelves and at the end of this post, I've listed all the full recipe of everything you need! 

For this project, I used the second largest and second smallest of the vignette boxes which come in a set of 4, together with the largest sized vignette panel and added some of the new Halloween Tape Trims around the raw edges on the front of each of the boxes. I used the neutral shade tape that has a pinked edge and just applied it to the edge, adhering it with a touch of Matte Collage Medium.

I then covered the outside and the backs of each of the boxes using one of the gorgeous designs of the Worn Wallpaper. To add a real touch of vintage to these boxes, I also added some Crackle Paste around the edges and created some small rips and tears in the paper. These are simply made by picking away at the paper, to create a rip and then folding back the edges of the torn paper and smearing some of the Crackle Paste over the top. Once all the pasted surfaces are dry, I used the Walnut Stain Distress Crayon over the top to accentuate and colour the crackle paste.
Moving onto the insides of each box and the vignette panel and to cover these I used some of the papers from the Departed paper stash. Inside I used a design that complimented the Worn Wallpaper perfectly and on the panel, I chose a crackled design which will be ideal to create the look of flooring!
To create the texture around the edges of the panel I used Translucent Grit Paste that I applied quite thickly and after allowing it to dry, I then took a fine detail brush and just painted some Black Soot Distress Paint over the pasted areas. One the paint was dry, I added a touch of Treasure Gold Gilding Wax over the top to highlight the pasted areas and all the gnarly little bits.
I now have all my boxes covered and after using Matte Collage Medium to attach the small box onto the larger box, I placed them both onto the vignette panel and set it to one side to dry thoroughly. Once they're dry, I used one of the Pinked Etcetera Trims which I painted with Distress Paints and after cutting it down to size, I attached the trim across the centre of the larger box, to form a bookshelf, attaching it with Matte Collage Medium on the edges of the trim.

Now the boxes are in place, I wanted to create the light for the small box and for this I used one of the Tiny Corked Vials with the rounded end and a set of Tiny Lights. I bore a hole into the back of my box to place the lights through and then taking a pair of scissors to the lights, I cut them down so that only three bulbs remained on the wire! Cutting the lights does not affect them from illuminating, they will still work as long as the wire at the back remains intact. I attached the battery box with a foam pad.
You now have the three lights on the wire on the front and to create the glass fitting, I took the tiny corked vial and crackled it. To do this, I primed the surface of the bottle with Matte Collage Medium, allowed it to dry and then applied a layer of Rock Candy Crackle Paint. Allow for the paint to dry, the crackle to appear and once it has, I used a combination of Mushroom, Sepia and Gold Mixative Alcohol Inks to colour the crackle. Just drizzling the ink over the surface of the glass. Attach the glass over the top of the tiny lights, feeding them into the glass bottle and then apply some Matte Collage Medium around the top of the rim and attach to the back wall of the box. You might need to hold it for a few minutes, until it adheres and then I would walk away ~ don't be tempted to touch it! I can tell you now, that's not a good idea!!
...and once it is set into place, this is how it makes the whole box shine once it's lit!
To complete the box, I added a handle on the top which is from the Hardware Pulls set and attached this with matte collage medium and added some Hardware Heads so that it looks like it's nailed on.
Around the edge of the box, I cut strips of the mummy cloth from the Halloween Trimmings set, dyed it with a combination of Frayed Burlap and Antique Linen Distress Spray Stains and then pulled the cloth, to create these fine shredded pieces, which I adhered around the edge of the box. YOu'll also notice that I have a domed piece sitting just below the lightbulb and this is simply a piece of Halloween ephemera that I adhered with Matte Collage Medium onto the back of a Prima Melange Pebble. I then allowed it to dry before inking the front of the pebble with some Mushroom Alcohol Ink before attaching it inside my box.
So we now have the main structure, lit and ready to be decorated with the embellishments, and starting with the books which are so much fun to create but really simple. The size of each book cover really does depend on how small or large you want your book to be, so if you need a complete book measuring 2.5 x 3cm, then cut a panel of card, any colour you want to use but I chose red and black and cut this to measure 2.5 x 6cm. Bend the card around a pencil to create the spine of the book. I then inked the edges of the book cover, and added a touch of gilding wax. For the insides, I used some old book papers that I cut into small sections. You need to cut the book paper to measure 2.3 x 5.7cm in size and I used approx 10 pieces for the inside of each book. Fold each piece in half before attaching them inside the book cover, layering them over the top of one another and attaching each of them down the centre to create the pages. You now have one mini book and will probably become addicted to make more.

I added Remnant Rubs and Snippets Ephemera pieces to create the book titles and images on the front of each of them.

Now for my Paper Doll to be put in pride of place ~ I coloured this with Distress Marker Pens and placed him into the box, adhering a Halloween Baseboard piece next to him ~ this creates a support to the figure and he also has support from the boxes across his back, so add the adhesive wherever he leans against something and he should be nice and secure.
The next embellishment will be all the bottles and these are a mixture of Tiny Corked Vials and Apothecary Vials. I added crackle to each vial using the same technique as I used on the light bulb but used different alcohol inks to add colour to each one ~ from browns to green, but this is your choice and you can decide what you love! To complete each little bottle I added either a Snippet ephemera, a label and some black twine from the Halloween Trimmings set. You'll also notice that some have wax dripped over the corks, this is achieved by simply lighting a candle and dripping the wax.

To create the scrolls, I cut used some offcuts of papers from Tim's paper stashes, all of which I pop in a box for one of those days when I might need them, and this was the day! I rolled the papers around a pencil and then after securing them with a dab of Matte Collage Medium, I inked the edges, created a few rips and tears and made them look a little older in appearance.
I now have the majority of my embellishments and attached my vials, scrolls and books into the box with Matte Collage Medium, and I also added some moss, a few die cut spider webs placed into the back and some coconut fibre strands, all scattered around to add that extra hint of creepiness to the room!
I also added some boneyard findings, painted with a little gesso to make them whiter and placed these into the vials, and a resin skull sat on top of the scrolls in the box at the top.
Now for those finishing touches...and that spill of blood on the floor!

This was created by drizzling a good amount of Glossy Accents onto my craft sheet, (make sure the craft sheet is non-stick) and then allowing it to dry. I left it overnight and once it was dry, I then coloured it with Cranberry Alcohol Ink before carefully peeling it off my sheet and adhering it to the floor of my vignette, so that it appears to be spilling out of the bottle.
The finishing touch of a Halloween Clippings Sticker, 'Open Day Or Night' was added along the front of the vignette panel and finally, I placed the whole piece of decor onto some Mini Foundations which were painted with Black Soot Distress Paint.











I really hope you've enjoyed how I created this project ~ it was so much fun to make and as always, thank you Tim, Paula and Mario for inviting me to bring my crazy imagination to life and create with so many wonderful products! Love you all... ❤️

Thanks for all your visits and I'll see you all again really soon...Emma x

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