Monday, November 22, 2010

Song Birds

Today I Created | Glittery Song Birds

I wanted to create something cheery since the weather has been gloomy here. I created chipboard birds to brighten my day.

I used a sheet music image from the Graphics Fairy. This was printed on paper and glued to chipboard. Next I die cut them using Sizzix Birds die.

I inked the edges using Worn Lipstick, Distress Ink then applied Mod Podge over the entire bird shape and added glitter.

I glued these to painted clothes pins, added some weight to the bottom of the clothes pins (weights are  necessary only if nothing is hung below the birds) and hung them up. I also plan to use these on my Christmas tree.

This project has been shared with the Graphics Fairy, ApronThriftGirl and Making the World Cuter.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Estate Sale Thrifting

Today I Created | Additions to my Ephemera Collection and more

It is a rainy weekend here in Southern California. In spite of a bit of rain, we went to a half-off day at an Estate Sale.

I admit that I have a collection of a lot of odd things but they all have two things in common; 1) They are vintage and 2) I like something about them.

I first dug through the small collection of postcards and cabinet cards. I found four lovely postcards that were so sweet. Plus I found a cabinet card of a photo of two sailors but on the back was the most beautiful Art Nouveau illustration that I just couldn't pass up.

I found a box of dominoes. They must be from around the midcentury because the dominoes are very dense but they are in a green vinyl-wrapped box. I plan to do some altered art with the dominoes.

Then there was this Automatic Adding Machine (and Subtracts!) Considering the technical advances in inexpensive calculators today, I thought this "Automatic" Adding (and Subtracting) Machine was rather quaint. This is made in American and must be about midcentury.

I selected one piece of hand-embroidered linen that I thought was very sweet and I needed for a project I have in mind.

My final find was an unopened bag of Christmas tree Candle Clips. These are heavier than the modern versions and have a nice pinecone pattern on the underside of the clip. 

I hope you enjoy my Treasure Thrifting adventure from this weekend.

This is linked to Vintage Thingie Thursday.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Blog Hop #3 - Flower Pillow

Welcome to the third week of the Triple Play Blog Hop. This week's featured die is the Sizzix Originals Die - Flower, Beauty Bloom by Brenda Pinnick.
This was an interesting personal challenge because I didn't want to create a typical flower with this die. I had cut a few test pieces out of paper to see if I could find any inspiration. As I moved the flower bits around I suddenly saw a pattern appear. Being a graphic designer I tend to think in ways of how to organize bits to create a pleasing visual.

Once I had an idea of a pattern, I then had to decide on a technique to best showcase the pattern. Since this was Brenda's die and she also designs fabrics, I decided to try fabric applique and create a pillow.

The image above is of the finished pillow on my vintage, garage sale desk chair and below is a detailed image of the machine applique. I had never machine appliqued before so this was a new experience. I used an old wooden button from my mother's collection for the center detail.

I hope you enjoy my use of the Flower, Beauty Bloom die. Please continue through the Blog Hop by clicking on the Forward or Back button on the Triple Play Blog Hop blinkie to the right.

This project is linked to The Girl Creative.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Child-size Cooking Utensil Collection

Today I Created | A Collection of Child-Size Cooking Utensils.
It was another warm and beautiful Southern California Autumn weekend so we found ourselves at a garage sale where the person was an avid Garage Saler selling off her collections. There were large quantities of vintage glassware and old Pyrex cooking bowls in a variety of colors and styles.

I was attracted to the smaller, child-sized, toy cooking utensils that had the old red wooden handles. I bought a mini-muffin tin (4" x 5.75"), two mini-rolling pins and a cake decorating tool with six nibs still in the box.

I also found two more Tin Noisemakers for my collection and an old camera, with instructions and a flash attachment. I know that I have more old cameras stashed away somewhere so this will be part of that collection.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Sizzix Triple Play Blog Hop - Twist Cube, 3-D

Today I Created | Karen Burniston's 3-D Twist Cube using mostly Tim Holtz product.

Welcome to Week 2 of the Sizzix Triple Play Blog Hop. The featured die is the Sizzix Cube, Twist 3-D pop-up Bigz XL die by Karen Burniston. I had a lot of fun with this project so I included a lot of details regarding products used and various techniques.

My design concept was to try and use as many Tim Holtz products from my stash as possible. I started off by doing a lot of sketches and some test cuts to see how everything went together. When I was ready I cut all of my pieces from tan cardstock (the only product I had to purchase) and made little piles of embellishments that I planned to use on each side. Next came the fun part of decorating the sides.

The image above is the top with the cube folded flat. I used the Sizzix Retro Circles Texture Fades to create the pattern in the paper and Distress inks in Spiced Marmalade, Tea Dyed and Barn Door. I applied the inks using the technique in Tim's Compendium of Curiosities (CC) book, page 33. I attached the Button (my stash) by inserting the stem of the button through the cardstock and attaching it with wire hidden inside and then looping a Ball Chain around the button. Other products used: Journaling Ticket and ABC Skid alphabet stickers by Creative Imaginations. The other items you see along the edges are actually parts of the various sides of the cube and will be described later.

On the front of the cube I used the Cracked Texture Fades and applied the same colors of Distress inks plus Dusty Concord using the CC technique on page 40. The die cut shape is the Styled Label stamped with the Crown from the Regal Flourish stamp set using the technique on CC page 37. I also added a Game Spinner.

The left side has two paper images from the Graphics Fairy. The crown paper just worked so perfectly in this design. The stamp in the corner is part of the Regal Flourish set using Black Soot Distress Ink. I also used some Traveler Tissue Tape, Ball Chain and Type Charm. I punched a small hole on the front and side of the cube and hung the Type Charm from the corner.

The back was a little more free-formed. I used the same inking technique on CC page 33 but without the Texture Fade so the ink blended on the paper surface. The Clock is from the Journey stamp set. The Wings (top right corner) are die cut from plastic packaging using the Sizzix Heart Wings die and then embossed with the Patchwork Texture Fade. I inked them with Alcohol inks in Purple Twilight and Sunset Orange.

On the right side I inked all of the edges before assembling so I was able to get crisp edges. The wing is created with the Regal Flourish stamp and Perfect Pearls using the CC technique on page 38. The Crown is die cut from Grunge Paper using the Sizzix Heart Wings die then I applied Rock Candy Distress Crackle Paint and Dusty Concord ink using the technique on CC page 42. It is attached using a Memo Pin. Other product used: Filmstrip Ribbon with a bit of Alcohol ink for color.

The bottom side worked well because I used only three main colors of Distress inks in this project so, although the panels are all very different, they visually work together. I used a French postcard image and a French map image from the Graphics Fairy on two panels. The other panel is a continuation of the side. I added more Traveler Tissue Tape and a stamp from the Journey set.

I didn't want to ruin the surprise of the completed cube so I left these last two photos for the end. As I said at the beginning, I did sketches and made samples to see how everything would work together. Before assembing the final cube I laid everything out to see how it would work. Here are the photos prior to assembly. You can see in these photos that I had additional embellishments (Swirls and Key) that I did not use in the final piece.

I hope you enjoy this example of the Twist Cube as much as I enjoyed making it. And thanks to Karen Burniston for designing such a clever die.

Please continue on through the Blog Hop using the Forward or Back links in the Triple Play Blog Hop blinkie. And please be sure to visit again next Thursday when the featured die will be the Flower, Beauty Bloom.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

French Collages

Today I Created | A series of collages combining French images and birds.

I wanted to create three collage images to be used in a framed set. I hope to find the perfect set of frames to highlight these images.

All of the images are from the Graphics Fairy blog. I absolutely love the birds and wanted to use them in a unique way. The French paper background and the other French images create a visually pleasing composition to the bird images.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Tin Toy Collection

Today I Created | Additions to my Tin Toy and Noisemaker Collections

It is a lovely Autumn day here in Southern California so I spent the morning browsing at the local outdoor antique fair.

I found three items to add to my collections.

Earlier in October I found a nice lot of tin noisemakers. Today I found one more to add to that collection. It is a slighter smaller version of one of the designs I already had.

I also found a tin spinning top. I've seen smaller versions but this one is about 5 1/2" across and very colorful.

The best find was a tin Junior Dial Typewriter. I love old typewriters and this is an adorable toy version.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Blog Hop - House, 3-D

Today I Created | A 3-D House for the first Triple Play Blog Hop Thursday

This was my first experience using the Sizzix ScoreBoard dies by Eileen Hull and I can see the wonderful possibilities. I decided to try some unusual chipboard to use as the basis of my 3-D House project.

I found some old LP records in my attic recently so I dug through them and found John Lennon's Double Fantasy album. He was such an icon of music and peaceful protests that I knew I could create something with his album cover.

I had to be a little creative to die cut the shape so that both John and Yoko's image could be clearly seen once the house was assembled.

After most of the house was built but before gluing on the roof, I attached the wire so that it curved in a graceful bend. Next I used Photoshop to print images of butterflies that I found on the Graphics Fairy blog and carefully cut them out. I arranged them by color so that they start off in shades of blue/green and rise up to orange. I attached the butterflies onto the wire to appear as if in flight from the door up to the rooftop.

My Triple Play Blog Hop project is a tribute to John Lennon and the magic of his message that is still relevant today.

Please click on the Triple Play Blog Hop button on the right to continue to view the work of other designers and their creative use of this same 3-D House die. And next Thursday we will be featuring the 3-D Twist Cube die.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Holiday Luminaria

Today I Created | A set of Holiday Luminarias

These were inspired by the Halloween Luminaria on Tim Holtz's Blog. I wanted to try a different twist on the idea.

I started by making my own bags. I used light-weight, 12"x12" papers that were a solid tan color similar to a real paper bag. I die cut them using the Sizzix Bag, Tall die. The nice part about cutting bags with this die is that they are smaller than lunch bags so the battery-operated tea lights fit nicely.

Before assembling the bags I glued die cuts of two styles of reindeer and a snowflake cut from black paper. The snowflake and one reindeer were cut from the eclips Christmas & Traditions Alphabet cartridge. I was able to cut them small enough to fit within the smaller bag. The other reindeer is from the Reindeer Flight die by Tim Holtz.

I assembled the bags and placed the flameless tea lights inside. One tea light per bag worked well but you can use more if you want it brighter. Below is a photo of how the same bags appear in regular light.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Happy Birthday Banner

Today I Created | A Birthday banner for a special co-worker

This birthday banner is for a friend who loves roses and is quite an accomplished gardener. I wanted to make something that reflects her green thumb. I still need to add her name to the banner so this is not the complete project. Luckily she just uses her initials so I only need to add two more pieces.

I created these by first printing the flower images from the Graphics Fairy. These are such lovely floral images. I scaled and printed the images so that they were 5.5" x 7" (I used InDesign to crop and print the images at the same size but you can also size them in Photoshop.)

I trimmed each image to create a rectangular pennant and then used the Tim Holtz, On the Edge, Ornate die to add a festive edge along the bottom of each piece. To finish this off, I sewed a ribbon along the top of all of the pieces.

Now that Halloween is upon us, I am turning my creative energies to work on my projects for the upcoming Triple Play Blog Hop. This is an exciting creative challenge and I can't wait to see what the other designers create. Click on either the Triple Play Blog Hop Sizzix button or the link to see what the blog hop is all about then visit each Thursday for the next seven weeks to see each new challenge.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Elixer Bottle

Today I Created | An Elixer Bottle Label

I created a collection of old medicine bottles not too long ago. Then recently I saw this fish bone image on the Graphics Fairy blog. Today I decided that they somehow belong together in a project.

I first took the fish image into Photoshop and added more background to fit the dimensions of my bottle. I then studied a few old labels and discovered that old serif faces were popular back then so I found a font called Fusty Saddle. I thought up"Bone Trader" as the name on the bottle since it seemed to work well with the image of the fish bones.

I printed, trimmed and roughed up the edges a bit and attached it to an old medicine bottle. Just another Halloween decoration to spook up around the house.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Tim Holtz Halloween Costume

A couple of days ago I had tried a technique of stamping with bleach on a t-shirt. I first stamped bleach and then paint and sewed an applique shape on a t-shirt.

That t-shirt was my Halloween costume for work. I was a Tim Holtz Grunge Groupie. I also carried an alcohol ink applicator and a Distress ink pad. Unfortunately, it didn't win any prizes but it was very comfortable.

The best part was that, unexpectedly, I had a Skype video conference with Tim regarding a project.  I was able to show off my costume and he had a good laugh. Good times!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Halloween Collage

Today I Created | A Halloween Collage

I was digging around on the Graphics Fairy site again looking for some Halloween decorating inspiration. As usual I found some wonderful images.

I started with a background of an Antique Sheet Music and removed the headline in Photoshop. Next, I added the skull and colored it to match. I then took this image into Illustrator so that I could play with type in the headline.

I love fonts and this one is called Aquiline Two. Isn't the capital H beautiful! I used the word "Nocturnes" that was inspired by a Natural History print of moths. I colored the font to match the browns in the sheet music.

I also printed these butterflies because they were a beautiful shade of Halloween orange. I cut out the butterflies and mounted them with pop-dots so they "float" above the background. The second photo is kind of dark but you can see how the butterflies float.

I am also announcing that I am joining an extremely talented group of designers in the Triple Play Blog Hop thanks to a dear friend, Karen Burniston. Beginning November 4th there will be a creative Blog Hop of over 60 talented designers all using Sizzix dies. The designers will create something different every Thursday for six weeks. Be sure to click on the Triple Play Blog Hop button beginning November 4th.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Thank You card

Today I Created | A Thank You card

I created this thank you card using the Sizzix Ticket Strip die and the Tattered Floral die. I used the Tim Holtz acrylic stamps for the ticket image and left the center of one ticket empty so that I could add the word "Thanks".

I am also announcing a slight change to the format of my blog. Because I have been attempting to create something everyday, I tended to work towards quantity rather than quality. My day, like most people's, is very busy so I don't always spend as much quality time creating as I would like.

So beginning today I am going to attempt for more quality projects but with a little less frequency. I will still create something everyday but I will now allow myself more time to design and create even if it means that I don't post everyday. My goal is to enjoy creating something everyday.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Bleach Stamping

Today I Created | A Bleached-Stamped T-Shirt

Two things I know about bleach: 1) It can ruin your clothes if you spill it and 2) It is a liquid.

The reason I mention these two points is because I began to wonder if you could "rubber stamp" with bleach, sort of a "reverse rubber stamp" by removing color rather than applying color.

First I die cut the Decorative Accent and Elegant Flourishes shapes out of adhesive craft foam and mounted them to a piece of acrylic. This created the "rubber stamp". I also used the Accent die to cut an extra piece of adhesive-backed t-shirt fabric.

Next I poured bleach onto a paper towel in a shallow dish to use as the "stamping pad".

I had a pre-washed t-shirt with a layer of aluminum foil and paper towels inside so nothing would soak through. I then stamped the bleach onto the flat t-shirt. I found that the color lightens as it dries.

After the bleach dried I used acrylic paint on the same foam stamp and printed on the shirt. I sewed on the extra fabric die cut shape as an accent. Finally I sewed random stitches on top of everything to add some detail.

Things I learned from this: 1) bleach can be a unique and unpredictable art medium and 2) bleach does not affect adhesive craft foam so you can use it for other projects.

Additional Note: I wore this t-shirt as my workplace Halloween costume. I was a "Tim Holtz Grunge Groupie". Please see my post on October 28th to find the unexpected result of my costume choice.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Halloween Gift Tag

Today I Created | A Halloween Gift Tag

I created a variation of this tag yesterday for the gift bottle. I changed the look a bit to allow for more space to write a note to the recipient.
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