Monday, January 30, 2012

A few years ago, I purchased a book, Scraptastic, by Ashley Calder. I just found the book on my shelf and have been re-inspired by her unique style. Looking through this book has just boosted my desire to try new techniques on my scrapbook pages.

Therefore, this weekend I tried stamping in gesso:

First, I spread gesso over a chipboard shape with a brush. I varied the thickness but made sure the whole piece was covered.

I lightly misted a rubber stamp with water and pressed it into the gesso. (Make sure to clean off your stamp right away.) To speed up the drying time I used a heat gun.

I then inked over the chipboard shape and then wiped it off with a paper towel to reveal the texture. I did this several times until I reached the desired color I wanted (allow the ink to dry, again I used a heat gun).

I then brushed a small amount of paint over the shape. I rubbed off the excess paint to expose the shadows and highlights.

Some close ups:

. . . and the finished lalyout.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

One of my goals for the New Year was to try a new scrapbooking technique at least twice a month. Although I have used Washi Tape I have never made my own . . . until now.

Washi Tape (Paper Masking Tape) is a multi-purpose adhesive tape made of washi, handmade Japanese paper known for its use by artists and craftspeople. It comes is a variety of colors and patterns. In the last 12 months or so Washi tape has flooded the scrapbooking industry and many major scrapbooking companies have come out with their own versions. It can be used for gift-wrapping, book-marking, arts and crafts, and numerous other projects. It is easy to tear by hand, write on, and remove. Want to make your own?

I used ¾” masking tape.

1) Tear strips of masking tape from the roll and place them sticky side down on an old placemat.

2) Paint tape in desired color and let dry thoroughly. (I used a heat gun to speed up the process.)

3) Stamp with desired design.

I’m so pleased with the results!  This is a layout I completed using my handmade Washi Tape.

Just want to remind you:

Saturday, January 7, 2012

I supervise twelve lead teachers and 20 associate teachers. I know how hard these ladies work. Most will agree with me that teachers receive pay that is far less equitable than that of the job they so tirelessly perform. One way to counter act such inequalities is to provide acknowledgment and gratitude for a job well done. For the 2011-2012 school year, I have made my grandsons teachers a gift every month. (With five little boys and very little extra time, I know my daughter appreciates this.) Although the boy’s teachers love them and have only good things to say about them . . . a little bribery goes a long way lol!

I think teacher appreciation week is sometime in May, but why wait until then? Believe me . . . a hand written note, baked goods (who doesn’t like a treat), a gift card, a basket of extra classroom supplies (some teachers use their own money for supplies); a container of office supplies (post-it-notes, paper clips, rubber bands etc.) and hand made gifts are all ways to say thank you.

This month the teachers are getting a Mini Calendar.

You will need:
One 12” X 6” strip of cardstock
One 5 ½” X 4 ½” piece of cardstock or patterned paper
One 3 ½” X 4” piece of cardstock or patterned paper (to mat the calendar)
Embellishments (brads, buttons, ribbon, etc.)
Adhesive (liquid glue, glue dots, double-sided tape)
Twelve printed mini calendar months (or a pre-printed mini calendar)

Take you 12” X 6” strip of cardstock.
Score a line at ½”, 1 ½”, 2 ½” and at 7 ¼” down the length of the strip.
Fold the strip on the scored lines to create the base of your calendar.
Use double-sided tape or glue to adhere the ½” tab to the inside of the back base.
Once you have the base assembled, you can put it aside while you create the calendar front.
Take the 3 ½” X 4” piece of paper and adhere the calendar to it.
Take the 5 ½” X 4 ½” piece of paper and embellish, as you like.
Attach the 3 ½” X 4” piece of paper with the calendar on it to the
5 ½” X 4 ½” piece of paper.

I got my calendars from a construction company and they used them as advertisements. My calendars were a little smaller so I adjusted the mat size.

For Ann's Twine Challenge at MSW this month I completed this one.

Monday, January 2, 2012

The January sketch is up at MSW and I'll have to say it's one of my favorites!  I used a photo that Colton took of himself and his friend Cassie with his camera phone. 
In capable hands, a camera phone, the most widely used kind of camera in history, can produce compelling images.  Whether it be a random, spur-of-the-moment snapshot or well-thought-out compositions, a camera phone is a valuable tool for photography. Often, the most inspiring pictures occur in everyday life when you do not have a standard camera with you. The phone that you are carrying in your pocket can capture those impromptu photo moments when it's impractical or impossible to have your other camera with you. And, if you know their limitations it is possible to take great, memorable pictures on your camera phone

January Sketch:

My take on the sketch:

Sunday, January 1, 2012

I love fresh starts and what better time than the beginning of a new year. It’s time to get rid of some emotional baggage and move forward into a new year with renewed energy.

I don’t make new years resolutions . . . but instead choose one word that describes my vision of the upcoming year.
My word for 2012 is “NEW” - New beginnings, a new outlook and new goals.
Along with that I decided to try a new scrappy/paper crafting technique at least every other week (we’ll see how that goes?!) and post the how to details here on my blog.

Making your own ribbon out of coffee filters:
I saw this idea in a Creating Keepsakes magazine some time ago, actually six years ago. One of those things I always wanted to try and never got around to . . . you know how that goes . . . better late than never. I’ve put my own twist to it and used Glimmer Mist instead of watercolors and gathered it instead of hemming the edges.

1) Smooth the coffee filters out.

2) Spray the coffee filters with Glimmer Mist (or paint them with water colors) and let them dry.

3) Cut the filters into 1” or 2” strips

4) Sew the strips together end to end and trim excess filter and threads

5) Run a gathering thread the length of the sewn together coffee filters and gather the strip

This is a layout that I completed for my  “Use A New Technique Challenge" at MSW this month. I hope you will play along and be inspired to make your own ribbon or try a new technique that you have wanted to try.