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




Monday, 7 January 2019

A Warm Wintery Red House Light for my Home

Hi, servus, thanks so much for stopping by and welcome to the usual invite over to the Calico Craft Parts Blog!

This time I have used one of the lovely Town & Country House Kits to create a little decorative light to put on top of my new electrical heater in my newly renovated living room.
I have always wanted a fireplace in my home, but sadly in our flat we don't have the possibility to put up a real one...and for several years I wasn't willing to even consider the alternative of a "fake" fireplace as I didn't like the really cheap and artificial look of "unnaturally red glowing plastic wood in a poorly designed kitsch-y fireplace".

But after our last stay at our favourite hiking holiday apartment with a (real) fireplace I decided to reconsider that,  as we all - my husband, our dog, especially my son (and I of course) just loved cuddling and relaxing in front of the cracking fire and even if I never was to get a real fireplace myself, I could at least see if I could find an electrical one that wouldn't look too cheap and too "fake".
Much to my delight I found that the design of these electrical fireplaces has much improved during the last years - especially the faux flames effects are now quite acceptable and the look of plastic wood has much improved too. Yay!

My husband still was sceptical at first, but then I found a particular little electrical fireplace in a design that even convinced him to give it a try! Now we LOVE our (fake) fireplace and enjoy our new cosy living room even more! (we have even built our own fake "cracking sound" device - 'cos what good is a fire without the cracking of wood!?). Even our friends admit that this little fireplace spreads a lot of cosiness and that especially the sound is extremely soothing and relaxing.




Our new fireplace kicked off a little renovation of our living room then. A new, smaller couch replaced the old and worn large brown one. And as the new couch is grey, I decided we needed a bit of colour in this area of our living room - so the wall behind it was painted in a warm, deep red. I also had one of my own favourite forest photographs (with red fallen leaves on the grey forest ground) printed on a large canvas to put on that wall. And a new wing chair with a footrest has now become my sons favourite seat. ;)



It is always good to repeat colours in a composition (in this case the furniture-and-wall ensemble) to kind of visually "bind" all the elements together and highlight one by the other - so I decided I needed some red home decoration on my little black round heating friend ;)



There are several sorts of gorgeous houses in the Calico Craft Parts store to choose from - but I went for one with a quite plain design (as the heater is a very clear and straight design too). As the window openings in this kit are already cut out, this little house was perfect to create a little red house light with! 



The how-to with steps images (especially on how to add the LED lights and where to drill holes and such) can be found over at the Calico Craft Parts Blog as always (simply click HERE to get taken to the according post on their blog). 

Hugs and happy crafting!
Claudia
xxx



Tuesday, 1 January 2019

New Year - New Challenge at SanDee&amelie's Steampunk Challenges!

Hi, servus and belated Happy New Year, my dear creative friends! May all your wishes come true this year. I wish you loads of luck, success and happy moments and - most important - good health for 2019!

Welcome to my project post for the first challenge over at SanDee&amelie's Steampunk Challenges for this year! Maura is hosting this months challenge and awaits you over at our challenge blog with the inspirational makes of the design team (alongside with the new fantastic prize bundle from our wonderful prize sponsor DecoArt...and of course lovely Glenda from boozybear will be with us as our other prize sponsor again. Yay!).

The theme is - as always - an "Anything Goes - Steampunk/Industrial", but I remember Maura saying she wanted to add a little twist to our kick off challenge for 2019...



My first steampunk project for this year came together quite spontaneous. I had a colour copy of a cabinet card portrait in my paper stash that showed a rather staid guy...but I wanted to turn him into an adventurous steampunk inventor by painting over it (with DecoArt media fluid acrylic paints).

He needed goggles of course! And not to forget - a most amazing moustache!



I had first drawn the goggles and the moustache's outlines with a soft pencil and then filled in the shapes with the acrylic paints, using a very fine detail brush. Painting over a portrait can be great fun - you can go ahead without having to struggle and fiddle with correct facial shapes and proportions. Even the shading is already there! All you have to do is let your imagination run wild. ;)

I combined some of Glenda's fab boozybear steampunk chippies with left over die cut gears that I had once treated with alcohol inks (I think these are left over pieces from this project over HERE). I cannot throw away anything...so I have several boxes with paper scraps and bits and bobs that sit and wait to be given new homes on future projects.



I have used Seth Apter's Emerald Creek Vintage Beeswax Baked Texture artists embossing enamel on the "Documented" panel. I just love the texture it adds!

The challenge is - as always - open until the end of the month. On 15th January we will reveal the Top5 and prize winners of our winter special challenge. So don't forget to come back to check if you are one of them. For now I would like to invite you over to our challenge blog to get yourselves a good dose of steampunk mixed media inspiration! I hope to see you play along with us and share loads of steampunk galore again this year! Can't wait what to see the oodles of steampunk inspiration that the new year will bring. Simply click HERE to get taken to our challenge blog.

Hugs and happy crafting!
Claudia
xxx





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