Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Mail art.

I love what you can do with a humble envelope.  The randomness of this form of art is what excites me.  Each envelope is unique even when you begin with the same ingredients ( I am not hungry in the slightist).

You will need
envelopes (any size will do; bought or handmade)
paint in the colours you like and white(acrylic)
wide paint brush and water for cleaning
stamps variety of designs a mixture of heavy and light, text and numbers work well too for this kind of design
heat gun and or patience
kitchen paper
stazon black or similar waterproof black ink
pages from a novel
embossing powder
sewing machine
Step one
undo your envelope.  Carefully lift the flaps at the back of the envelope and open as if one sheet.

Step two
use your wide paint brush to paint the surface with gesso.  One layer should be enough even for a buff coloured envelope. Dry with heat gun or wait and wash your brush.  Use kitchen paper to dry your brush.

Step three
dribble small amounts of one colour of you paint and spread.  This should be an un even coat for the best effect.  Use heat gun to speed up drying or wait.  Add second colour and third repeating the process with the heat gun or waiting.  Remember uneven coats work best. Aim for layers of colour as oppossed to one uniform colour.

Step four
Use heavy stamps at this stage with black ink.  Stazon works well as we will continue to work the surface with paint.  Stazon is not affected by water.

Step five
Dribble your masking fluid from a height so that large and small splashes are creates.  Once you have a liberal amount of fluid, move you paper around so that drips and dribbles are formed.  Think blow painting; straw watery paint and a three four or five year old.  Go on make  a mess.  Aim for coverage as wide as possible. Keep turning your paper so that the direction of your drips and dribbles remains interesting.  Use heat gun and or patience.

Step six
with your dry wide brush and white paint smear paint onto the surface working over paint layers, stamping and dry masking fluid.  Work off most of the paint onto your paper towel and add a tiny bit of water to your brush so that the colour is wishy washy and smear.  Go for that uneven coverage.  Repeat as necessary.  Do it until you like it.  I find one coat works for me.  Dry.  Use a heat gun for speed and patience in all other instances.

Step seven
use your fingers to remove the masking tape.  Repeat paint process in step six.  Just one layer ought to dull the un-masked areas.


Step eight
More heavy stamping with that black stazon.

Step nine
Tear a page from your novel and continue to tear it down to label size.  Position without gluing onto the front of the envelope.  More dry paintbrushing with white paint over the new stamped images and the paper label shape.  Dry with heatgun or wait.

Step ten
Wash your brush but don't dry it. Choose your fave embossing powder. Dribble the water from your wet paint brush onto the paper and quickly add your embossing powder.  It will take a while to go off.  So be patient.  I used Tim Holtz embossing powder which is distressed.  I am not sure but I knocked it back with more white paint and I like  it better now.

Step eleven.
stamp with ink contrasting, complimentary or in black with finer images.  I am useing a mixture of bought and hand carved.  Stop when you are happy.
Step twelve
stitch around the entire face of the envelope. And add your lace trim.  Stitching adds texture.
Step thirteen
glue all flaps back to their original position.  Your envelope is now an envelope and a splendid example of MAIL ART.

Aside from your label for the address your envelope is now complete.

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Jus ta quick update

I haven't been crafting much because I have been spending time with family.  What a lovely evening we had yesterday. We all really enjoyed it.

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Coin purse

Today I have been very slow.  Little man is not sleeping properly. 

I crafted these goodies today.  Thanks Kerrie for the link to the crochet flower.  Look what I did.

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Give away result

It was only a two horse race. And thewinner was

I will email you sue and I will need your postal address so that I can send your goods off to you.

((((\\\\\\Well Done//////))))

Saturday, 18 December 2010

Saturday makes

Don't forget to sign up for my GIVEAWAY

I like Saturday's, my boys spend time with their dad, which means I get to spend time with my toys.  I bought this magazine yesterday.

With the instructions and pattern inside,which I modified, I made these,cute little shoes.

Another little pressie for Evie Grace.  I have just to add some buttons or something to secure the straps so the little things stay on.

 Finished. I love the vintage button detail.

Friday, 17 December 2010


Winter seems to put lots of people in the duldrums so as a way of bringing a little bit of spring into the lives of my readers I am hosting a give away.  This is a straight forward give away. make a suggestion about what I should carve next and if I like your suggestion I will carve your idea and give it to you along with my spring collection.  Don't forget to leave your email.  I will need to contact the winner for their postal address.  This give away will run until Monday morning.  I hope to recieve lots of comments from all you hopefuls.  

Just incase my idea is not enough, take a look at what you could receive.

There are five stamps in total.  I am sorry but you cannot have my ink pad, I love that colour and only aqcuired it last weekend. 

Thanks for taking part.

Wednesday, 15 December 2010


After my last blog post I needed to get the job done.  So here it is.  Better pictures tomorrow.

Crafting disaster! Ooops!

I am sharing this disaster so that you can avoid it.  Humph!  I am still really rather cheesed off, but I am hoping that this blog post will be somewhat cathartic.

I am making a 'new birth' present for my friend's baby daughter.  I had been thinking about what I should do.  I wanted to do something that would be with her for a while as opposed to something she will have for the short term.  I decided on a piece for her room. 

Given that I have been carving like a good'un I decided to sew instead!

I decided to the gift personalise and use her name.  She is called 'Evie-Grace'.  That was easy. 

I I'd decided to sew her name; some form of embroidery, but I did not want a long winded project.   I took a short cut and printed the name onto fabric which I would embroider laser.  No disaster there.  I chose a pink.  Obvious I know but which little girl does not like pink!  She will have no choice believe me.

I made a fabric flower and the pink was complimentary to that embellishment.  I had made the flower first.  No disaster there.  5 petals , 5 different fabrics.  I even layered 3 buttons for the centre it is cute.


I used this tute .  As I said.  No disaster there.  I chose my embroidery floss.  With the printed image all ready to go I got to hooping and started a sewing. 

All was going well.  It was going to be done in a short while.

Then disaster. 
The culprit, my iron. 
No matter what I am not to blame.  It was the appliance that let me down.

Today's lesson:  Do not use steam, or drips as the case was with this crafting disaster, when pressing fabric with a non fast ink treatment.  

It is back to the drawing board for me.  I have already printed the image again (I have slightly adjusted the size, it was a bit large). 

 And that was the tale of my crafting disaster.  I hope, by sharing you avoid any such silly mistake!

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

inkjet image transfer to your eraser (speedystamp) etc.

I love how tos.  Especially when they work and this one does.

Read through all the instructions before jumping in.

You will need:

inkjet printer
speedy stamp/erasers
baking parchment
masking tape
spoon or finger for burnishing.

Step one
Choose your image, reverse and resize to fit your carving material.  (It is absolutely essential to reverse your image if you want to create word stamps.)

Step two
Print your image in draft (so as not to waste ink) on regular printer paper.Cut your parchment slightly larger than the size of your image. Attach this piece of parchment to your original print, directly over the image with masking tape.  (Remove some of the stick by placing your tape on your clothes first, it will be easier to remove from the paper this way).

Step three 
Put this sandwich of papers and tape through your printer and re print the image.  I find draft mode to work really well.

Step four
Once your image is printed peel off your tape and place the image now on the parchment onto your carving surface.  Burnish the image gently with your finger or the back of a spoon.  The image transfers quickly and once it is transfered it is permanent.  Some care is waranted at this stage.  Don't distort the image by rubbing too hard.

Now have fun.  Find or create your own images and transfer your images because it really does work.

More making

I made this last night!  I just love carving.

Monday, 13 December 2010

New week, new outlook.

I had a lovely day yesterday.  My aunt visited bringing lovely little gifts for us all.  She is so thoughtful.  She knows I have been feeling down and totally cheered me up with some handmade purchases she made with love.  Who doesn't like to receive gifts.  I love gifting; as the bible tells us, there really is great pleasure in doing so, but getting gifts is also very nice.  Thank you auntie XXX

We move onward and upward.  We never sit still!

More weekend makes:

Note books soon to be added to my shop!

Sunday, 12 December 2010

Not feeling so fantastic!

The dark nights do affect me.  I won't go on about it.  This week has been a struggle; we (not the royal 'we', the family and I, I know I said the winter nights affect me, but not that much) aren't feeling 100%.  I hope next week will be better.

I have tried to be productive; putting my hands to use.  I do have spoils to share, they are in my shop on Folksy.  Hit the link to see what I've been making: Hearthandmade

Friday, 10 December 2010

Dark Nights

Dark nights and indeed dark days mean I am staying in much more which might account for my recently much improved blogging record.  

At this time of the year, darkness is not the only thing that seems to be constant.  Sickness has been with us for about a month now; off and on.  Well I can state that I am fed up with nursing sick kids and/or being sick myself, but enough of the negative!  Being in more means my hands get more time to play and as my recent blog posts indicate, they have been very busy indeed.

Today I am carving.  I have crocheting and patchwork distractions but I love the speed of carving.  It gives that instant crafting fix.  Today I am experimenting with a new transfer technique.  I will blog the results whether it works or not but don't expect too much from any images shown here.  I did mention the darkness.  Off to play!

Thursday, 9 December 2010

More Carvings

I love carving stamps.  Here are some more that I have made.  My favourite is the leaf.

I love stazon blue teal ink pad it is fab.  The images were stamped with this colour.

I have used erasers bought from the pound shop to make these stamps.  I made two more last night.  A mushroom requested by Marcus and initials for a friend.  I will post pictures later.

I love this craft, it is quick; therefore satisfying, cheap and unique to each carver.  I can't get enough.

Yesterday I went food shopping and ended up in our local Sainsbury's.  I have been checking out erasers on my travels wherever and whenever so this was not an opportunity to be missed.  I found a mega bargain.  Maped erasers, a pack of three, on offer for 3p.  Yes you read it right!  3p for a pack of three making it 1p per eraser.  What can you get for 1p?  As you can image I bought the entire contents from the shelves.  I bought 15 packets which means I have 45 erasers to play with.  This cheap craft, just got cheaper.  Will post pictures of my latest carvings when the light improves.  We are still very dark here.

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Last week was very busy.  The boys grandmother came to stay for a few days.  I spent 2 days sorting the house out so that she wouldn't be able to criticize me.  It worked!  We are a messy bunch and we are okay with it, but others find our disorganized lifestyle difficult.  I did not want to make her feel uncomfortable so went with tidy.  Well I am sure we will slip back into our untidy ways, just hope she doesn't decide to come again too soon.  lol

The patchwork, patience project now looks like this:

 I love how it is turning out.

kids love boxes, don't they!