Monday, 18 February 2019

Happy Bird Project at Calico Craft Parts

Hi, servus and I hope you've all had a nice weekend!

As usual I am inviting you over to the Calico Craft Parts Blog to check out my latest project with a very detailed step by step and loads of images. ;)


Inspired by a book from wonderful artist Geninne D. Zlatkis I painted this bird using one of the lovely wood shapes from the wide range of Calico Craft Parts bird shapes.




It is part of a larger project of course. So this is - as always - just a sneak peek to lure you over to the Calico Craft Parts Blog ;)

I would love to see you stop by and I hope you will like what I have created for your inspiration!

Hugs and happy crafting!
Claudia
xxx


Friday, 1 February 2019

"Let's play good bulb, bad bulb!"

...is probably my worst pun ever. LOL

...but I have been hoarding a cute little bulb dies set in my stash unused for ages it seems and when I recently tried to reorganise my cutting dies it (re-)caught my attention and the idea for a fun little mixed media steampunk tag was born.


Welcome to the start of our "Anything Goes - Steampunk/Industrial" challenge over at SanDee&amelie's Steampunk Challenges! And no need to mention that the reorganising of my dies came to a sudden halt because I had to create this tag...lol

It has been quite some time since I have shared a tutorial over here on my own blog and I guess I needed a bit of a time out from it...but this time I just felt I wanted to share the process with you (even if I still sometimes think that there are so many people out there who do much more inspired and professional projects and tutorials...). 




I used the Tag & Bookplate die to cut a tag from black cardstock. The cut out tag was embossed using the Foundry 3D Texture Fades embossing folder and to make my tag  more sturdy I glued an MDF tag from Calico Craft Parts to its back and then cut off the excess once the glue had dried. 


I simply made sure the holes of the MDF and the cardboard tags matched when gluing both together.


I had also cut two light bulbs and their filaments and threads from black cardstock and covered the glass part of the bulb with a thin coat of matte DecoArt Decou-Page because I later wanted to use DecoArt media clear Crackle Glaze on top.


While the bulbs were set aside to dry, I die cut some extra gears using my newly bought Sizzix Sidekick (which was a treat to myself after ten months of bravery with (almost) regular visits at the dentists, having three implants and several root treatments and extractions done...thanks to my former dentist who managed to make me feel on the safe side when in fact there would have been several teeth to be taken care of urgently).


But enough whining...let's focus on some good and fun stuff instead! I put the two bulbs in place (without gluing them on) to find good spots for my gears to go in and then glued these to the embossed background. The bulbs though still needed more treatment before they could be fixed to the tag for good.


I even used some of the cut off sections of the same gears and glued them in places where they looked as if they came out from behind the embossed riveted plates.


The bulbs got a thorough coat of clear Crackle Glaze that I brushed on with a soft wide flat brush. Then I put these on the heater to speed up the crackling process.


In the meantime I dry brushed the tag using DecoArt premium acrylic paints Cobalt Teal Hue, Diarylide Yellow and Quinacridone Gold Hue. These are perfect for dry brushing! I always started from the outside and worked my way towards the centre area but left that black. This way the focus gets drawn to the centre with the bulbs in it.



Voilà - first layer of Cobalt Teal Hue finished!


A mix of the Quin Gold Hue and Diarylide Yellow gave a lovely colour  to brush on top of the Teal.


In the meantime the heater had done its job and the crackling had turned out just beautiful!


To make the cracks more visible I used DecoArt media Titanium White Antiquing Cream.


Brush on, let dry and then wipe back with a soft damp cloth until you're content with the look. It's as easy as that!


On top of the Antiquing Cream I added a quick wash of the same mix of Quin Gold Hue and Diarylide Yellow. As the Antiquing Cream gets reactivated during this process and could be washed off, I only loosely and in one single soft stroke added the wash and dabbed off any excess with kitchen roll.


I also painted some rusty tones to the threads of the bulbs...

...and a thin border around the tag in the same colour and in dry brushing technique again.


DecoArt Metallic Lustres Radiant Red, Brilliant Turquoise and Orange Flicker were used to add a bit of metal bling and sheen to the raised areas of the embossed tag and the bulbs' filaments and threads.




I hand wrote my words on some black cardstock scraps using a white gel pen and cut them to size.


Now all my finished pieces were ready to go on the tag. I used black sticky foam pads to fix everything in place.


Done! 






Some close ups:







and once more the finished tag.




It was great fun to create (oh...by the way...the bulbs dies set is an old one and was from memory box I think) and I hope you like it as much as I do. With that said I would like to invite you over to our February challenge and to take a look at my wonderful teamies' makes for another dose of steampunk/industrial mixed media inspiration! Simply click HERE to get taken to our challenge blog. There's time until 28th February to play along and maybe make our Top5 or win one of our two fantastic prizes! I hope to see you over there and can't wait to see what you will create!

Hugs and happy crafting!
Claudia
xxx




Monday, 28 January 2019

Facetted Heart Birthday Card

Servus!

We celebrated my sister's birthday yesterday and I was lucky to get the cool "Faceted Heart" die from this year's new release right in time to make her a birthday card! Yay!




The Faceted Heart called for Distress Inks and Distress Oxide Inks and an "all Tim Holtz" card. ;)


I just love starting from a piece of plain white card stock or paper and ending up with something completely magic and out of this world and to me the Faceted Heart die does just this! (well, honestly all Tim's dies, embossing folders and Distress products do this... ;) 


I blended my white piece of cardstock with barn door Distress Oxide and added a layer of vintage photo Distress ink on top. Then I sprinkled on some water...

...and continued layering more red and brown Distress Inks on top, repeating the process until I was content with the look.


The final layer was more barn door Distress Oxide Ink. Then I ran this through my Big Shot to create the Faceted Heart and blended the edges - once they had been folded - with vintage photo Distress Ink.

Voilà! The finished and glued together heart! Love love love!


I still have and love some Tim Holtz "oldies" embossing folders from my very beginnings in my stash and never tire of using these as their designs still "speak" to me the way they did when they mesmerised me and made me dive deeper into this creative hobby several years ago.



I used white card stock again and blended it with Distress Inks before I ran everything through my Big Shot. Afterwards I added more Distress Ink and also some Metallic Lustre from DecoArt.


The kraft card's edges were blended with vintage photo too. Then I stacked all my layers and glued them in place and finished the card off with some of Tim's gorgeous vintage paper dolls and a quote chip.



Done!









My sister's reaction to her birthday card told me that she too felt this "wow" effect that you get when you find that it is possible to create something magical out of paper just by using some really cool products and tools. She was happy - and that made me happy too. Exactly how things should be ;)


Thanks for stopping by! 
Hugs and happy crafting!

Claudia
xxx

Friday, 25 January 2019

"You Can" - a StencilGirl® Project and a Message

Hi!

When have you last found yourself focusing on what you can do, instead of what you can not or no longer do?
And on which of these two opposing perspectives do you tend to focus more often and more easily?

....well,I guess I am not the only one whose recognition is - most sadly - more trained to detect all my "CANNOTS" and flaws that - if you look at it honestly - are also part of what makes us unique and loveable.
What a boring place of non-individuals our world would be if we were all equally perfect and equally skilled and how boring life would be if we could do whatever we wanted or were asked to to everyone's full satisfaction! No goals to reach, nothing to learn or teach...???




But as a teacher and mother I have learned that our society is already training our children to focus on failure instead of already made achievements - which is a very sad thing and has a massive impact on the self esteem of children at that age.
Most teachers - by having to give marks on their pupils' efforts - are forced to keep up a society that tells people what they still have to improve in and learn - instead of honouring what they have already achieved. The message is "unless you aren't really good at this, you are worthless and not as good as all those who can or do it better than you" - and that's nonsense!

But if we look at it honestly this is also the most common way we look at ourselves as grown ups too! Without consciously noticing we are making ourselves feel small, incapable and worthless on whatever occasion possible....I don't know a lot of people who have managed to get through childhood without being snatched away their self esteem and awareness of the beauty of their uniqueness and individuality.

Things get especially hard to handle when you are taken down by chronic or severe illness. Suddenly you find you aren't "functioning" properly...and with that often come feelings of being broken...of imperfection, worthlessness and incapability....and fear of being inferior. As if our worth for others were solely defined by what we can do for them and by how functional and perfect we are.

I have a dear friend who is going through a hard time at the moment and is facing all that. Even though she would never mention it, I know she is...because I have been there too and haven't forgotten what that did with me and to my self esteem. So I created a little "YOU CAN" journal for her as a gift.






It is another Wrapped Journal made from heavy grey board (and with the use of Eileen Hull's Wrapped Journal die) and some mono printed papers I have recently done on my Gelli Plate using DecoArt Americana acrylic paints and a variety of StencilGirl® stencils from my stash.
(I have a post up on the new German-language blog of Kerstin's and mine in which I am showing a collection of finished prints from that particular Gelli Plate session. If you're interested, you can find it over HERE).

And of course there's a full tutorial (including a short video) on how I have done the prints that I have used on the journal, which particular stencils I have used and how I put it all together over at the StencilGirl® Talk Blog. Simply click HERE to get taken to the full length project post with loads of images. Hope to see you over there!

And I would like to invite you to try to ask yourselves more often what it is that you really ENJOY doing and have already learned and achieved! I will try to do the same ;) 
(I wonder if it has an impact on the art we create....)



Hugs and happy crafting! 
Claudia
xxx


Thursday, 17 January 2019

Fox in a Box - a DecoArt Mixed Media Project

Hi, servus and bonjour! So happy to see you stop by my little creative corner today!

Time to let you know that my latest project for DecoArt is up today over at the DecoArt Mixed Media Blog!



I have used some of my beloved Calico Craft Parts and several DecoArt media and premium products to create a little starry winter's night scene by upcycling an old (and long ago emptied) tin from my never shrinking stash ;)



There's a full tutorial with many steps images over at the DecoArt Mixed Media Blog and also a grand variety of  beautiful Flora and Fauna wood shapes of all kinds and sizes (and for all the four seasons) over at the Calico Craft Parts shop to choose from...so you can go ahead and create your own favourite little magic world in a tin! It's really easy and you can incorporate almost any of your favourite mixed media techniques and products. And it is always lovely to see the joy and surprise on the faces of the persons who open up the tin - just to find themselves drawn into a little magical world inside!




If you want to find out which ones I have used and how I have used them, simply click HERE to get taken to the DecoArt Mixed Media Blog. Hope to see you over there!

Hugs and happy crafting!
Claudia
xxx




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