Monday 27 April 2020

Dreaming Myself Away Creatively in Times of Corona

Hi, servus and how is everyone doing these days?

Austria is taking first steps at getting back to a "normal" everyday life; "normal" meaning as normal as possible with the Corona virus still out there. Face masks, keeping one to two metres distance to everyone who is not living with you in the same household and special time tables for school kids will be staying part of that "normal" life (with schools and kindergardens and shops reopening again) for quite some time I guess. No one knows how summer holidays will look like and if these can be spent the way we usually do.... I decided to at least do some fantasy holiday travelling creatively on my desk and go to the beach!

Using one of Calico Craft Parts' printer's tray kits and other craft parts from their amazingly wide range of maritime and seaside themed wood shapes and combining these with stickers and designer papers and some DecoArt media goodness was great fun and creating my shadow box was a lovely relaxing time spent in my studio.

To see which Calico Craft Parts I have used and how I made my Beach-Holiday-Tray simply click HERE to get to the according blog post.

Stay safe and keep creating!

Friday 24 April 2020

Monochromatic Rainbow - StencilGirl Creative Team BLOG HOP

Hi, servus and welcome to the "Monochromatic Rainbow" StencilGril Creative Team Blog Hop, dear friends!

The team was challenged for this Blog Hop to pick one colour and use that with just the addition of black or white to create a stencil fun project. I chose my favourite colour - which is orange. As yellow, orange too gives murky tones when being mixed with black. Yellow is even more special as mixing black and yellow gives a dirty green! And as orange is a mix of red and yellow it behaves quite same-ish.

But the result wasn't as mucky as I had feared and trying to use as many various mixes that add different amounts of black to the orange paint as possible helped with still having my "orange" project look quite lively and not too sinister.

I once more went for one of my favourite themes - beetles - to create an ATC trio. But I've made my ATCs double-sided, so you can chose between a "bug-side" and a "Seth (Apter)-side" (as I have used some of Seth's stencils to create the other sides). A list of the stencils used can be found at the bottom of this post (including the links to the stencils in the StencilGirl online store).

I started my ATC trio by cutting six ATCs from black cardstock using my guillotine. ATCs measure
2 1/2 x 3 1/2 inches (that's about 6,5cm x 9cm). My plan was to create three double-sided ATCs.
I picked some of the fab StencilGirl ATC backgrounds stencils and as many different orange acrylic paints as I could find in my DecoArt paints stash.

Starting with DecoArt Americana "Jack-O' Lantern Orange", "Snow White" and "Lamp Black" acrylic paints I did the backgrounds for my "Seth-ATCs". I used a mix of the Jack-O' Lantern orange with the Snow White and stencilled the whole ATC using a cosmestic sponge. Then, while the paint was still wet I went in with pure orange and then mixes with black from the bottom and mixes with white from the top to create an ombre effect.

I did the same with the other two ATCs - here's a picture of the stencilled base colour which is the mix of white and orange. I did that to make the colours I was going to add on top pop from the black background.

For the ATC sides with the beetles I used plain white as a base to work on. As you can see I didn't pay attention to just stencil on the shapes of the one bug I had picked. You will see why I did that a bit later.

On top of the white stencilled base colour I went in with a layer of stencilled on DecoArt Chalky Finish paint "heritage" (which is a beautiful vintage orange tone and is also very opaque).

While the beetles were set aside to dry, I continued working on the Seth-side ATCs. As you can see I used the same stencil twice on each ATC - only with moving it lightly to the right and down for the second layer. To intensify the orange look I added a stencilled layer of DecoArt multi-surface Neon "orange" on top.

For some additional texture I used the Neon orange with a different background pattern on top of the previously stencilled one.

Next I added some stencilled words using one of Seth's fab stencils. I stencilled two words in white and one in black and outlined the letters in contrasting colours (or more precisely "not colours" as black and white aren't considered to be colours as they either absorb no or all light and therefore do not have specific wavelengths like the colours do).

Time to have a bit of beetle-painting fun with different tones of oranges - mixed by adding various amounts of black or white.
I used a detail brush and added patterns to the ones that were already there from the design of the beetles stencil.

I also took a picture of my palette so you can see how the orange "behaved" with white and black.

The final touch for my beetles was to add a thin wash of the Neon orange across the whole ATC.
That helped with make the orange tones pop from the black background even more.

I wanted to add a textural element to my ATCs - maybe because I thought of tiny hairy bugs' legs - or simply because I felt my ATCs needed a visual frame. ;)
I cut four pieces of frayed burlap ribbon each for an ATC to build a kind of frame with frayed edges and glued that to a piece of cut out cardboard (from packaging left overs). Once that had dried I glued the finished ATCs to both sides of the "framed cardboard ATC blanks".

I loosely stippled some DecoArt media "Pyrrole Orange" media fluid acrylic paint to the burlap fringe for a finishing touch.


The starring bug guys: 

(who is often feeling uncertain)

(feels incomplete)


(luckily got found by a lovely bug girl) 

The "Seth-sides":

The "Bugs-sides":

Check out all the wonderful artworks in our Creative Team Monochromatic Rainbow Hop:

Shel Cee – Violet

Peg Robinson – Purple

Sue Plumb – Blue

Linda Edkins Wyatt – Green

Jennifer Gallager – Yellow

Claudia Neubacher (this blog here)Orange

Carol Baxter – Red

Sunila Mahajan & Aditi Mahajan – Gold

Natalie May – White/Black

Debi Adams – Indigo

Comment on the blogs for your chance to win one of the $25 gift certificates for

Contest ends April 27, 2020, at 11:59 p.m. Central Time USA. Winners will be contacted via email the 28th.

List of stencils used on my project here:

- ATC Mixup 1 stencil by Mary Beth Shaw
- ATC Mixup stencil by Seth Apter
- Scarab Beetles stencil by Margaret Peot

Hugs, good luck and happy hopping!


Tuesday 14 April 2020

Stencilled Poetry - an Art Journal Cover

Servus and welcome to my blog today! I am so happy you're stopping by as today I am sharing a  make that is really close to my heart as it is about poetry - not only "stencilled poetry" (which I hope I have managed to achieve on my journal cover) but also the poetry from song lyrics and music that have deeply influenced my love for the English language and for music and for song lyrics that evoke images, feelings and stories in my head.

One of the very first songs - or maybe THE very first song - that did this for me was "Eleanor Rigby" from the Beatles (and the lyrics were written by wonderful Paul McCartney). I have been loving the song and also the "Yellow Submarine" movie since I was about twelve years old - and that love has never changed until today.

"Stencilled Poetry" is this month's theme for the Creative Team at StencilGirl Products to go by and a special line from "Eleanor Rigby" immediately came to my mind for this theme. So I created an art journal cover, trying to capture visually what that special line from the song evokes in me and how it makes me feel.

I have done a video of the process again - so you can watch and find out how I built up the layers on the journal cover and how some of the effects were achieved. So I hope you will hop over to the StencilGirl Talk blog to check out the video, some of my other thoughts that went into the design and also some more images of the finished journal.

Hugs and happy crafting!

Sunday 12 April 2020

Happy Easter!

Things to do to stay positive these days:

Keep your brain and hands busy!
Keep crafting!
Keep doing things you love!
Try out something new!
Revive a theme or technique you haven't done for ages!
Journal your heart (with all its hopes and fears) out!
Embrace silence and deceleration!
Make a list of all the little things that make you happy!
Practice family cuddling!
Play and dance to some of your long forgotten CDs!
Re-read a book you loved as a child!
Declutter those "special" bad feng-shui drawers!

Do little things that make you feel proud of yourself
and happy!
Rest when you feel you need to!

Love and feel loved!

Stay safe! 

Happy Easter!


Thursday 9 April 2020

Bobbin Journal in a Jar for DecoArt

Hi, servus and welcome to the invite to check out my latest project on the DecoArt Mixed Media Blog!

I have decided to create a project that is perfect to showcase stamps from a favourite theme. I think I am not the only one who has favourite themes and therefore stamps collections of these. With me that would be collections of grungy texture pattern stamps, bugs and insects and ... mushrooms.

So if you want to find out how I've created my bobbin journal in a jar with loads of gorgeous stamped mushroom images, simply click HERE to get taken to the tutorial.

Hope to see you over there soon!
Stay safe!