Friday, January 23, 2009

I do dabble

As I mentioned I do dabble in miniatures. Here is a card that represented a tool shed. The pinup board was for the birthday wishes. You will find miniature tools, a sanding block, seed packets and a woodworking instruction sheet. The card was about 20 cm high and 13 cm wide.

A card such as this combines lots of techniques of paperart with some computer art. The peg board was made by creating a template of grids on the computer and then punching the numerous holes with one of my favourite tools - the Japanese screw punch. A magic tool to both look at (the mechanism) and use. The hydrangea flowers were hand dyed with alcohol inks.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Does your keyboard wear jewellery?

Last year I was given a collection of Petit Cakes made by re-ment. More precisely it is Elegant Sweets #5 Delicious Artisan Cakes. The box of cakes sits on my keyboard like a brooch.

It is a boxed set of gourmet cakes just 50 mm (2 inches) long. It arrived in a cardboard box with the pieces individually wrapped in clear cellophane. It was when I put the liner in the box and then each of the cakes in the liner that the 'look' came together. It popped!

You can even see the seeds in the slice of Kiwi fruit and the white chocolate swirl on the ganache.

I have not been consumed by the craft and style of miniaturisation but I do dabble in it to create decorations for the front of greeting cards and I do enjoy this box of cakes.

For a view in miniature you might like to visit the site for the up coming stop motion animation film Coraline and watch the interview with the knitter.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Creating highlights

The two main themes for card class at Chandon Craft last week was the use of pearl embossing powder to embellish stamped butterflies and using a white coloured pencil to highlight designs on dark card stock.
Here is another card using the pencil highlight. The image is a single large stamp by Judikins #2672J.

I layered part of the image on foam tape to add some texture.

To finish off I inked only a portion of the image for decorating the inside of the card.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Storage for cards

Yes, I thought that title might get you in.

Actually I am going to share with you the storage I created for a set of Alien trading cards. The birthday cards I create often take some other shape instead of a piece of folded cardstock.
The set was made for the birthday wishes to an eight year old boy last year. Only one set ever released!

Take one tin, I think they are called Bandaid tins and apply paper.

There must be labels for the contents and space for a greeting.

Here are the treasured inhabitants.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Not daggy

Although quilling has a very long history with samples of the craft/art going back several hundred years I have generally found the current work to be, well, daggy.
Blog hopping from Heather Moore's blog Skinny la Minx to a site she mentioned by Yulia Brodskaya I have a different view on what can be achieved with the quilling technique, skill and lots of flair.

From Yulia Brodskaya's site two favourites are Thrifty Christmas and the flower bye.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

And now for the inside story

The oval openings were cut using a Coluzzle oval template and swivel knife. This is an older tool but I have only started using it very recently. I found it gave me great flexibility and accuracy when making the cutouts along the length (over 80 cm) of cardstock that made up the cream and green pages.

The greeting and photo were printed on inkjet transparencies then attached behind the openings.

The rose sprays were overprinted on the Basic Grey very berry sundae paper.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The design journey

At the hand over of the 60th birthday card, to those who commissioned it, I was asked how long it took.
My reply was " five months".
In the end it was about two hours for drafting the design and five hours for the construction. However way behind that were many hours spent finding out the likes and interests of the birthday person, developing how best to interpret those ideas into paper and images, finding resources, and then working out the shape of the card.
Sometimes I start a card with just a fuzzy image of where it will be going, perhaps just knowing the colours and papers.
A card like the star card needs exact dimensions to ensure it will open properly and so I know how much card stock must be used. With this star book I drafted the construction in my design book with all the dimensions and layout ideas. It was drawn in pencil and with a eraser nearby! This record could be very handy in the future should I want to make a similar star book when the original is way out of reach. For this one I even made a mock up of one set of pages from scrap paper.

A lot of ideas were gathered and created along the journey. Near the end the important task was to edit the ideas then toss out the excess paper, flowers, ribbons and clutter.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Now you can see it ...

The design of the card has a theme of the Royal Albert china 'Old Country Roses'. I found this Anna Griffin paper while travelling at Christmas. It was the last two sheets in the store rack and has now been used up. An accidental and valuable find.

Techniques to note:
- the ribbon has been used to stabilise the spine of the book and to provide the ties for closing
- the ribbon comes through the board to provide something firm to tie the closing knot against
- the spine ribbon is 'loose' to allow the book to lie flat (level) when closed, preventing stress at the spine

- double sided tape has been minimised in case it doesn't last over time. The points are held together with stitching. In some star books the spine sections are held together with beautifully simple and practical Coptic stitching
- small gold beads have been threaded onto the linen thread as the points were stitched together. Old Country Rose china has a painted gold edge so the beads and stickers on the front cover reflect this design.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

And the stars are ...

Anna Griffin rose spray and Basic Grey Two Scoops very berry sundae papers.
I spent many hours this weekend making a star book as a 60th birthday card. It is actually a partial star book - three pages rather than the common seven point star. This gave me a page for the greeting, a page for a photo of those sending the greeting and another for their message.
The construction used A1 sheets of cardstock to create continuous pages. Only the inner pages were cut from 12 x 12 papers.

To start the process I had to make the book covers. This is not a card to be made in one day. The covers need at least overnight for the gel glue to dry thoroughly. When the pieces of book board were covered with the lovely Anna Griffin paper they were put in the book press.
If only! It is actually a book-book press and the boards went under the press and not in!

I guess a book-book press is multi-functional and doesn't take up additional space when not in use.

Monday, January 5, 2009

What else to use a clear pail for?

As I mentioned I was trying to make our gifts handmade. Two special friends were given pails with some beaded tree decorations packed inside.

This gave me another reason to decorate some pails.
I love their clear plastic sides just as I like using acetate on cards, clear glass jars (look at photo of my desk) and glass plates.

On the mauve pail the strip of striped paper around the bottom was put through the crimper to add some texture.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Cards as greetings and cards as a gift

After making our Seasons Greetings cards (and getting them in the mail on time) I turned to making a collection of cards to present in a tin as a gift. Decorating the tin was a lot of fun and yes it included more rubons. These appeared on both the acetate of the lid and the side of the tin. I thought the shape of the lid would be a challenge but it turned out easy to do. The bottom edge of the tin gives a hint about the contents. Happy birthday bon voyage miss you congratulations thinking of you ... and so it goes around. As we left for holidays well before Christmas Day I did have to issue an IOU for some more cards to go in the tin ...soon.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Change of view

I have posted a new photo for the 'view ... looking out' then thought it time to change the photo of the view across my desk. I have just completed the design of the February class card for Chandon and well, the view is not a pretty sight. It does not resemble the photos I am seeing in the new Stampington magazine 'Where Women Create'. New photo to come soon.
Edit: As it looks now.

Where to hide it? In a can of striped paint of course!

One of the Christmas gifts given was a gift card for Bunnings the hardware store. Rather than put the plastic card in a paper card I chose a package to go with the DIY hardware theme. The card was wrapped in some lolly papers and hidden inside a clear plastic pail. Using rubons enabled me to add a fun label without putting the paper through the printer.

There was one downside to this design. The pail of sweets was put away with the other holiday treats until a hint was given and its secret revealed.