Tuesday, May 31, 2016


I SO love my Stampotique stamps and I particularly love the range from Daniel Torrente and Jill Penney who design for Stampotique.  Recently on the Stampotique Facebook page there was a post with some playing cards made using the playing card background and some of the Stampotique stamps.  I couldn't use the background stamp from Stampotique because it's too large for an atc so no good for my classes so I cut out a template and improvised!   I think these turned out quite well for such little colour used on them.

Of course, you could always colour in your images but I like the clean look that imitates playing cards using mainly black, white and red (with maybe a little bling thrown in for good measure).  You need to mask off the bottom half of the card to do this technique but that's no big deal and I also made sure I printed out some good card playing quotes for my girls to use as well!

"Such a card"...

"A full deck"...


"Play your cards right"...

"Drama Queen"...

Tuesday, May 17, 2016


 When I was in the United States recently I bought a couple of boxes of Reynolds Waxed Paper as it's almost impossible to buy decent waxed paper here in Australia (and it was $1.69 a roll!!!).  I've used waxed paper before for resist techniques and stumbled across another way of using it for backgrounds.... run it through your die-cut machine (Sizzix Big Shot or Cuttlebug etc.) with your die-cut shapes!  (I used these on gloss card, a much better result than with plain card stock.) It works really well and I tried out various methods of colouring but found that Distress Stains spritzed with a little water made really pretty background colours and when you wipe off the excess when it's dry using a damp paper towel, the wax design is revealed!  Imperfect?...perfect!!!


 "Nothing good"...


"Parlour games"... (as in "step into my
parlour said the spider to the fly").  This
particular card was coloured using
Distress Ink Pads with sponges and then
water flicked on to get the little spots.

"Need a crown"... This one was coloured
using Brusho's.  You do need to blot the
Brusho off to get most of the water off
before you'll see the wax design.

Friday, May 6, 2016


Polished Stone is a technique that has been around for quite a while and while using alcohol inks has made it a really simple technique, not everyone has all the beautiful colours of alcohol inks.  Most people do have some dye re-inkers though and these are what is used for this particular version, along with rubbing alcohol (which is like the Blending Solution that you use with the alcohol inks).

I have used the Ranger Distress Re-inkers because this is what I have most of but you could try out any other dye re-inkers you have on hand.  I always like to start with the lightest colour and generally use two contrasting colours first, like blue, green or yellow and orange and then use a darker third colour to build up interest and intensity.  Depending on what particular stamp or image you use, you place your colours on the card where you like.

One of the obstacles of working on an atc sized piece of card (2-1/2" x 3-1/2") is because the area is so small, you need to not be too heavy handed and totally cover your card with the darker colour as you'll lose the lighter effect of the first application.  You might want to try this technique on a larger greeting card size first to get an idea of how it blends etc before tackling the smaller atc card.  I used a cotton wool ball for application.


"Little key"... 


"Pixie Dust"... (the sparkly bits on the wings
are Angelina Fibre cut and added onto 
Glossy Accents while still wet)

Sunday, March 20, 2016


This class is about a few different ways of doing embellishments, those little finishing touches that complete an atc or card.   

The first one is the humble plastic fly-screen.  Love how simple this stuff is to use and it takes any of the waxy metallic finishes really well to alter the colour.  Attaching is a breeze using the Ranger Tiny Attacher (mini stapler).

This next one is really difficult to appreciate on a computer screen!  If you paint chipboard shapes (in this case, the heart) with Smooch Inks, dry with a heat gun and then do two layers of Clear UTEE (Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel) you get a wonderful dimensional, glossy embellishment!  I've also used the Smooch Ink to do a stripe down the stamped bugs back and then the shimmer Smooch Ink either side of that and coated with clear embossing powder while they were still wet, then heated with a heat gun.  Shimmery colour on stamped images that still show the stamped image underneath (if you don't do the Smooch Ink too thick that is!).
"I love bugs"...

This one has two separate techniques, organza that has been attached under the image, clipped in fringe the edges to separate it and then heated with a heat gun to melt and distort.  The second technique is the butterfly up the top right corner.  It was a gold metal butterfly so to change it to match the colours, it was pressed into a clear embossing ink pad, some orange embossing powder sprinkled on parts of it, then some black sprinkled on the remaining sections.  Heat with a heat gun and you get a lovely marbled effect!  Any of your metallic embellishments can be treated this way to suit your colours.

This one also has a combination of two techniques, the black organza that has been fringed, attached with the Tiny Attacher (mini stapler) then heated to melt and distort and secondly, the chipboard heart was cut in half, coloured with Pumpkin Smooch Ink then two coats of clear UTEE to add shine and dimension.

Another good technique is to tear a piece of dry-wall jointing tape (it's self-adhesive) and press it into clear embossing ink, sprinkle on embossing powder and then heat to melt the embossing powder.  It won't affect the jointing tape as it's a paper.  Peel off the backing and stick it down as an embellishment. (You may recognise this atc as being in last week's post - Orange Power.  I put it in here as it's a great way to add an embellishment under wording to draw the eye to it without overpowering the word.

Finally, on this last atc, a piece of thin chipboard is torn so it's slightly larger than the wording, then using a Zig two-way glue pen, add a layer of glue around the edges and into the centre where the wording will go.  Wait until the Zig glue has become tacky (a good 5-8 minutes), then press two colours of foil, I used red and silver on this one though it looks gold on the computer screen.  I also added a little Zig glue to the top of the skull in the picture and foiled that with red too.  Very shiny in the flesh!

Friday, March 11, 2016


The technique for this fortnight uses a product called Orange Power by Planet Ark (Sticky spot & Goo Remover specifically as there are other products they make... on a side-note I particularly like their air freshener spray for the smallest room in the house!)  Years ago I did a technique using a product called Citro-Solve which was sprayed onto old National Geographic Magazines (circa 1980's) which dissolved and distressed the ink to create wonderfully organic looking backgrounds.  

Now Citro-Solve is not readily available here in Australia, but I had read on-line that this product might work.  Luckily I had a box of old National Geographic magazines hanging around, one was dated 1960!!!  I chose the ones from 1980-1990 as I remember having the best success with these.  

Basically I just sprayed some of the product onto the picture pages (dark coloured pictures work the best) and smooshed them around a bit and peeled apart to let them dry.  What you see below is the results!  Pretty happy that this works still.  Obviously if you don't have an old box of Nat Geo's hanging around, you'll have to try other magazines.  I haven't tested it out on newer magazines but it's worth giving it a go!






Below are the samples of some of the pages made using this technique.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016


Once again we'll be playing with Brusho's this fortnight but this time as more of a watercolour base with plastic wrap covering it while it is still wet.  For added shimmer I've used my Perfect Pearl Water Mix (simply a water spritz bottle that has a small amount of the white Perfect Pearl added to it to make a shimmer spray with no colour, but just the shimmer).   I've done this class before using a different watercolour medium instead of the Brusho's but I love how gorgeous these colours are and normally this for technique you need to let the card dry for quite some time to let the wrinkles take effect. 
 Last time I dried the cards in a slow oven with no fan on and this works quite well.  For obvious reasons you can't use a heat gun as it would make the plastic melt.  These also look very different in the flesh as the computer unfortunately doesn't show the gorgeous shimmer these have.

"Spirit Animal"...

"Unloved flower"...



"Like a star"... 

This sample below is double the size of an atc, so it's 5' wide by 3.5" high.  This gives a better idea of what the wrinkle pattern looks like but you still can't see the shimmer.  :-(

Here's another sample using Turquoise and Purple.

Friday, February 12, 2016


The class for this fortnight is a Faux Woodgrain finish on plain white cardstock.  I like to try and use products that we all have so this technique is made using white craft glue, Distress Ink Pads in various colours and a bone folder and scoring board to create the vertical lines.  Love the resist effect that the white glue gives and how different colours create a varied theme and feel to the cards.

My favourite one is the top one "A closed mouth" as the little fly on it is just absolutely awesome!   When Julie put one in my hand I almost pulled it back straight away as there sat this little fly and it looked so realistic it was hard not to react instinctively.  Of course it had to also have fly screen and a Venus fly trap as well! 

"Closed Mouth"... (colours used are Weathered Wood, Peeled
Paint and Black Soot)

Here's a close-up of the fly.

"Love my dog"... (colours used are Hickory
Smoke and Black Soot)

"Sarcastic"... (colours used are Antique Linen,
Weathered Wood and Rusty Hinge)

"Soul Flight"... (colours used are Antique Linen,
Frayed Burlap and Walnut Stain with a little white Picket 
Fence Distress Paint wiped on to tone it down)

"Forecast"...(colours used are Smoked Hickory,
Weathered Wood and Stormy Sky)