Thursday, 14 November 2019

Autumnal Splendor...

...is what I love especially about this time of the year.

Even when in late autumn the leaves have almost all fallen to the ground and start losing their warm red, yellow and orange colours and Vienna seems to drown in a foggy soup of cotton wool most of the days I love the tranquillity that comes along with a slowed down pace at everyday life.


It''s time to light candles again and have a cuddly time in front of a fireplace after returning home from a refreshing walk with my dog.



On our walks we usually meet the crows...sometimes when it is very foggy outside I am rather hearing than seeing them, but they are always there and I love hearing how they communicate or when they come close and drop me their walnuts so I can crack them open for them...they have also already made friends with my dog girlie,
Bluna, and often they come down and tease her, touching her lightly at her back and landing not too far away from her, waiting for her to chase them (but Bluna knows this is a game she can't win, so she sometimes just kind of fakes she's starting to chase them and just stands and watches them fly away).





I tried to capture this special mood and time of year in a tag that I made for the DecoArt Mixed Media Blog.

Over there I am sharing the whole process in detailed steps (as always). This time I have used chipboard and laser cut MDF shapes (from Calico Craft Parts and Creative Embellishments) that I used various DecoArt and DecoArt media products and paints on to create different textures and effects (like the "feathers" for the crows). I especially tried to create a foggy sunset background - which maybe was the hardest part when creating the tag.

But I think it all came together quite nicely in the end...and I hope you will think that too when you hop over to the DecoArt Mixed Media Blog ;)


What is your favourite time of the year and what is it that you especially love about it? What would it be that you would want to capture on a tag about your favourite time of the year? 



Hugs and happy November crafting!
Claudia
xxx


Monday, 11 November 2019

In November Autumn Mood...

...I have created this fortnight's project for Calico Craft Parts.

The muted colour palette and melancholy feel of this time of the year are something I really love and I have tried to capture a little bit of that special beauty in a little project.



I've played with a lot of different textures and a rather reduced colour palette. The full tutorial with many steps images is as always up on their blog and I hope to see you there and that you will like my project!

Hugs and happy crafting!
Claudia 
xxx


Friday, 1 November 2019

Time for our SASPC winter special challenge!

Hi, servus and thanks for stopping by!
It is that time of the year when we are launching our annual "Steampunk Winter Special" challenge over at SanDee&amelie's Steampunk Challenges.




As I am one of the two founders and proud owner of this challenge blog (and the very happy and proud "boss" of a fantastic design team) I always like to take this opportunity to thank YOU all out there - our players without whom we wouldn't be where we are today - for always submitting such fantastic inspiring steampunk and industrial style art and craft projects and of course to wish you all happy holidays as our next challenge will go live on 1st January in the next year!


As our winter special challenge is open for two months (until the end of December) the usual rule of the allowed three entries per person and challenge gets changed to five - twice as much time to create - more projects to enter (maybe). At least this is part of the idea behind our winter and summer special challenges: to give you more time to focus on what we all love about this season and mabye still even find the time to squeeze in one or the other project that fits our challenge (and challenge rules). If there is a touch of winter or Christmas to your makes that is more than welcome of course.

My project definitely has a touch of the approaching holidays (and hopefully the snow that will come with it...over here in Vienna Christmas holidays mostly are muddy and grey, sometimes even with spring like temperatures and green...I miss the snow! Well, maybe it will be a white X-mas this year. Who knows...

I made it snow instead on my steampunk project... ;)


Some heaps of snow have gathered in the nooks of the gears...


I've made some steps images so I can take you through the process if you like (if not, simply scroll to the end of this post and follow the link to our Winter Special Challenge post).


I mainly played with layers and different textures.

I used a left over MDF heart and some left over old MDF gears from That Craft Place (I'm afraid these aren't available anymore but they have other new MDF pieces that are worth a look) that I had in my stash alongside some of the Mini Cogs Woodshapes  and some of the Clock Faces & Clock Hands from Calico Craft Parts and of course a lot of DecoArt and DecoArt media products.


I primed the large MDF pieces with a thorough layer of DecoArt media white Gesso. Then I used DecoArt media fluid acrylic paints Cobalt Teal Hue, Phtalo Blue and Phtalo Turquoise and painted some of the cogs' edges in watercolour technique so I got a kind of fading effect.


Once the Gesso had dried on the heart, I applied some DecoArt media white Crackle Paint here and there with a palette knife and let it dry naturally.


The dried crackled heart was given two layers of diluted Prussian Blue Hue media fluid acrylic paint that behaved differently on the Crackle Paint and created a darker effect where there was just Gesso.



Then I went wild with some Viva Rusty Paper and DecoArt media Antiquing Creams Raw Umber and Titanium White to create a lot of texture and patterns. I sprinkled diluted Prussian Blue Hue and white media Shimmer Mister on top and finished my heart off by blending the edges with black archival stamping ink using a piece of blending foam.



Some of the cogs had been painted using DecoArt Dazzling Metallic paints  Moss Pearl and Teal,


others had been sealed with a coat of Triple Thick before I loosely added media white Crackle Paint on top of these.

I used my fingertip to add some Viva Rusty Patina here and there (and on the clock hand as well).



The larger arrow was also covered with a thick coat of DecoArt media Liquid Glass for additional texture and dimension.


At that point I decided to also crape on some white Crackle Paint to my heart in some spots and to highlight the cracks later with a thin wash of Phtalo Turquoise. After that it was time to glue the finished gears in place.


To make the blue gears stand out from the background I added a thin wash of Transparent Yellow Iron Oxide media fluid acrylic to the heart's background.


One of the last steps before I left everything over night to let it dry, was to add DecoArt Snow Tex to the gears and the Liquid Glass (as mentioned earlier) to the glued in place arrow.


As I needed more glittery snowy bling I decided to also paint the gears and heart with a thin layer of DecoArt Glamour Dust Ice Crystal and the dried snow with diluted Glamour Dust Turquoise Sparkle.  As these are quite translucent and only add a faint tint they still leave visible what's going on underneath.


This is how my steampunk holiday heart looked like in the next morning...


Time to add a final layer of gears, clock face and hand for some contrast and more depth.
The Calico Craft Parts were glued in place using matte Decou-page (that I had also used the day before to glue the pieces to the heart of course) and left in their natural state - actually I really like the MDF brown and neat surface texture and it made for a lovely contrast to all the weathered texture I had created so far.




Picking the rough yarn that fit best wasn't easy...I finally decided to go for the pale blue one that repeats the lighter blues from the gears.


Voilá! 





















Hope to see you play along with us soon! 
Simply click HERE to get to our challenge blog! 


Happy X-mas and steampunk crafting!

Claudia
xxx




Tuesday, 29 October 2019

I Love Fall - Tag

I haven't been taking part in challenges for ages but recently I just was inspired by Simon Says Stamp's Monday and Wednesday Challenges and so I decided to enter their actual Wednesday Challenge that is all about Fall and Autumn Colours. The perfect theme for me as I just loooove autumn and its rich warm colour palette!









I also wanted to finally try out my newly bought Distress Oxide Spray Inks. I remember I gave the Distress Oxide Inks a try when they came out as ink pads but never really managed them properly. Now that there are Oxide Spray Inks - and after watching Tim demo these and being just like "wow" and "ooohh" most of the time, I decided to give them another try. I am still not fully content with my results but they were perfect for using them to create a fallen leaves fall tag. ;)




Don't ask me which colours I threw on all my papers...I mixed Spray Stains with the Oxide Ink Sprays and mostly went for reds, oranges and yellow tones and added some "frayed burlap" Oxide Spray Ink into the pot as well. Iced Spruce, Peeled Paint, Fired Brick, Fossilized Amber and Pumpkin Spice were in the mix...also Vintage Photo and Rusty Hinge Spray Stains...hm...I'm sure there were some more that I have now forgotten...

My idea for the tag was inspired by a photograph I have taken years ago during one of our autumn hikes...



I remember how much I loved the dew drops on the leaf and wanted to recreate this effect on my autumnal leaves on the tag....some still clinging to the almost bare branches...




...others already having fallen to the ground, gathering in beautiful piles of oranges, browns and reds.


I used Tim's Alphanumeric Classic Uppercase and Lowercase sets alongside the Fall Foliage and the Dimensional Heart dies sets. To die cut my tag once from heavy greyboard and another time from white cardstock I used Tim's BigZ "Tag and Bookplates" die. I also die cut some branches using his new "Branches" BigZ die.
The background base was done using Tim's Birch embossing folder.







The die cut leaves and branches were blended around the edges using black archival stamping ink. Then I went in with some Distress Glaze to make the autumn leaves shine! You can see the difference - to the left the leaves die cut from the papers done with the Oxide Inks - to the right the leaves already treated with the Distress Glaze! So cool!




I glued the embossed Birch texture tag to the greyboard tag and let that dry. Then I used some of the Distress Oxide Ink Sprays again to add some milky birch bark colour...on top of that I used one of the three Mini Stencils from the #43 set to add some Grit Paste. Once that was dry I painted it using Distress Paints Peeled Paint and Twisted Citron.



I finished the tag background off by blending the tag's edges with Gathered Twigs Distress Ink using a blending tool.

As I didn't have any Glossy Accents I used the Liquid Glass from DecoArt instead and created droplets on all the leaves that I had glued in place.





While that was set aside to dry naturally I die cut the small Dimensional Heart from one of my left over "fall colours Oxide papers". That was folded, glued together and fixed in place with some Tacky Glue.


I felt I needed something more at the bottom of my tag, but first wanted to add the quote. I die cut the letters needed using Tim's Alphanumeric Classic Upper- and Lowercase dies sets and glued these in place as well. I used a fine tip black marker to outline the letters.


At that time I had decided on what to put to the tag's bottom - more fallen leaves. This time I glued them behind the tag. To add a thin border on top I cut a thin strip of rough ribbon and glued that on top.






 I also decided to add a bit of crackle texture here and there. So I applied that in a few spots with the very tip of a palette knife. The inks from underneath beautifully mixed with the white from the crackle paste - so I didn't have to add extra paint on top of that.








Voilá! My finished "I love Fall" tag!

















I hope you like it! 
Thanks for stopping by and as always

hugs and happy crafting!
Claudia
xxx

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