March 26, 2012

Simon Says Stamp and Show... A Tag!


Another week has flown by and it's time once again for another challenge with Simon Says Stamp and Show.  This week is all about tags.  I love making tags - they are small enough to finish quickly, yet big enough to do lots of layers and embellishing.  Here we go...

I started with a standard #8 manila tag and did a color wash background using lettuce, wild plum, butterscotch and sunset orange.  I love how the vibrant colors blend together so nicely.

Then I added some stamping using stamps from Tim Holtz' Mixed Media set.  I used the "bubble wrap" circles with snow cap paint dabber, and the chicken wire stamp with deep purple archival ink.  Next up was the numbers stamp from Tim's Little Labels set, stamped with jet black archival

I love Tim's new sentiment from the Words for Thought set, so stamped it on white card stock and cut out each word to adhere them down the right side of the tag.

The main feature of this tag is the grapevine hearts that I found at a local craft store - I love their natural look.  They are adhered to the tag with matte multi medium - have to be very patient waiting for it to dry as the hearts are very uneven - had to really glob it on. 

I added a resin flower by Prima to the bottom corner and finished everything off with some zigzag stitching on the sewing machine.  I felt like the tag needed something extra so I added a word key with the "love" accented with snow cap paint dabber.

Hope you have a chance to join in the fun this week - as usual the generous folks at Simon Says Stamp are offering up a $50 shopping spree for a randomly picked winner!  The new idea-ology has arrived so now is a great time for some extra shopping money!  Join in!

Are you playing along with Tim's online class - Creative Chemistry 101?  I've joined in and made a load of tags using the techniques Tim is sharing with us.  Even if you've been following along with Tim's techniques for a long time, you will not regret signing up for the class - I'm learning so many things - not just "what" to do... but more importantly... "WHY", which is so helpful!  And you'll have lifetime access to the tips and videos.  I'll be back soon to share some of the tags with you.

Have a great week - see you soon!

~ ellen.

March 19, 2012

Simon Says Stamp and Show... A Handmade Background

Hi everyone,

This week's theme on the Simon Says Stamp and Show Challenge is to do a project with a handmade background, which is awesome since I *love* making backgrounds! 

I made a trio of tags, and used three of the tags from THIS blog post I did a few weeks ago, which will show you all the details of how to make a background master board using Dylusions sprays and stencils and then cut it down to lots of tags.

Then I started layering stamps over the background.  I used the leafy vine stamp from THIS
Dylusions set and painted in the leaves with perfect pearls and highlighted them with a white pen.

Next I stamped the bunting stamp (pennants / banners for US folks) several times onto Ranger's new specialty stamping paper, and colored them in with several colors of the new distress markers, which are awesome!  I cut out each pennant and adhered them across all three tags and added the string in with a black pitt pen.

Then I stamped the mini tags onto specialty paper and colored around the borders with distress markers, and added several sentiments, also colored with distress markers.  I accented each tag with some colored hemp twine. 

Creating a handmade background is a lot of fun, and can be a project all to itself.  Sometimes I just sit and make backgrounds!  Then when I'm ready to make a tag, I'm already started!  Join in with this week's challenge and have fun playing with backgrounds. As always you'll have a chance at winning a $50 shopping spree with Simon Says Stamp

Have a great week!

~ ellen.

March 12, 2012

Simon Says Stamp and Show... Anything!


How time flies... this past week just whizzed by, and here we are so soon with another Simon Says Stamp and Show Challenge!  This week is open for anything you care to create as the theme says... Anything Goes!  So, no excuses this week - get your art on and create something... anything!

I started with a 10" x 10" wood framed mirror from IKEA.  I stained the wood with bright turquoise Dylusions ink spray, applied with a baby wipe.  I love the shabby, beachy look!  (Sorry for the reflection of me in the picture above - photographing mirrors is a tricky business!)

I used  Dylusions ink sprays and stencils and 12 x 12 sticky back canvas to create a large background, and added some texture with gesso, circle stencils and the edge of a craft scraper. 

Once the background was finished I cut it down and covered 8 chipboard squares.  The beauty of sticky back canvas is that no adhesive is needed!  Simply peel the backing and stick it down! Easy!    Then I used black paint dabber rather than ink with Dylusions stamps to stamp the flying birds and the leafy border all the way around the edges.  I painted the leaves in with perfect pearls mixed with water and adhered to the frame with multi medium.

Then I stamped 3 different sentiments onto plain sticky back canvas with jet black archival ink, cut each sentiment up, and arranged them in various areas on the mirror.

I hope you've enjoyed this week's project.  As always, if you join in the challenge and post your creation on the challenge blog, you'll have a chance at winning a $50 shopping spree from Simon Says Stamp!

Have a great week!

~ ellen.

March 5, 2012

Simon Says Stamp and Show - Bottle It!

Hi everyone,

There are many things in life we'd like to "bottle"... so this week's theme on Simon Says Stamp and Show gives us an opportunity.  I took a trip to Studio 490, using Wendy Vecchi's Art Parts to create a piece of wall art.

I started with the Art Parts flourish frame, covering it with Basic Grey paper, painting the flourishes with a black paint dabber and stamped the frame with the script stamp.

I added the Art Parts jar, which I painted with picket fence crackle paint and then, when dry, accented with tumbled glass distress stain, and over stamped with the matching jar stamp.  Then I added the art parts flower, colored with distress inks and the art parts scissors, painted with silver paint dabber and stamped with the matching scissors stamp.

I tucked the art parts queens and crowns behind the frame, like she's peeking over the top.  I finished the piece off with some idea-ology pen nibs, a game spinner, wooden stars, and vintage buttons.

Hope you've enjoyed this week's piece and have a chance to join in the fun.  As always, if you are able to join in the "bottle it" theme and link your piece up on the challenge website, you'll have a chance at winning a $50 shopping spree to Simon Says Stamp!

Have a great week - hope to see you soon.

~ ellen.

March 2, 2012

Mixed Ranger Media Background Tutorial


I hope you all had a great week - I'm so glad the weekend is here!  I was playing around in my studio this week and wanted to do some cool backgrounds.  I love the color palette of the Ranger Color Wash sprays, but I wanted lighter tones, and an idea was born.  I've always been a fan of combining different colors of the same product, but started wondering how I could combine different products as well.  All products are available (or will be very soon!) at Simon Says Stamp.  Here's what I came up with...

I started with the darkest of the color wash sprays, espresso, and combined it with the picket fence distress stain.

I started by applying a generous amount of the picket fence stain to my craft sheet.

Then sprayed the espresso color wash over top of the stain.

Pressed a manila tag into the mixture and "scooched" it around a little bit.

Here's the result after one pressing.  Cool, right?

Then I lightly pressed random areas of the tag into the leftover inks/sprays to get some random spotting.

Did the same thing using cranberry color wash spray and picket fence distress stain.

 I got two tags out of the pressings of inks.

Then I thought... color wash sprays are reactive with water, just like distress inks, so I spritzed some water over the whole tag hoping to get some watermarks.

It worked!

Here's another combination - sailboat blue color wash and picket fence distress stain.  This is just from ONE pressing.

Then I combined dusty concord distress stain with bubblegum pink dylusions ink spray.

Here's the result after one pressing.  Nice, but a little boring, right?  Keep dipping and dripping...

And you get this...

Then, instead of adding random splatters of water, I added splatters of perfect pearl mists.  I misted several squirts of perfect pearls (one color at a time) into the palm of my hand and then splattered it onto the tag, heat drying in between colors) so I got nice big splotches.  I used pink gumball and forever violet.

And, finally, I combined mustard seed distress stain with postbox red dylusions spray inks.

I think this is my *favorite* !!! I used the back of a previous experiment tag that had lots of blue, and the edges still show, and I *love* that!  Did some water splatters on this as well. 

So... if you're stuck for a new color combo, don't limit yourself to one product line - mix it up!  These tag backgrounds are now ready for stenciling, stamping, doodling, etc.  Hope you have a chance to play this weekend!  Let me know what you think!

~ ellen.

March 1, 2012

Tim's 12 Tags 2012 - March


Hope you're having a good week - we've almost made it to Friday - yippee!

Unless you live under a rock, you've probably heard the big news that Tim Holtz has officially retired his 12 Tags of Christmas tradition which we all loved... HOWEVER... the 12 Tags tradition is continuing, just in a different format which allows us to enjoy it all year long!  He'll post one tag per month instead of 12 tags in 12 days - makes such perfect sense!  Click HERE to see the tag for March.

I was completely *buried* in work during February, but the cloud is lifting (YAY!) and I wanted to jump right in and do the tag for March.  Here's my version, with some substitutions and additions as usual...

What an awesome idea to do paper mosaics? Love it! But I'm getting ahead of myself... first step was to use Tim's wood grain stamp (which I haven't gotten my hands on yet) so I used my Hero Arts wood grain background stamp.  It's not quite as bold a pattern as Tim's but still gives a wood grain result.   Since the pattern isn't as bold, I wanted to add a little more interest to the background so I used one of Tim's flourish stamps with coffee archival ink.

I wanted to try out some of Tim's new sentiments, so I used one of the new stamps from THIS set.

Now for the mosaic butterflies... love them... I didn't have the "cement" embossing powder - truth be told I didn't even know this existed! (add it to the wish list!) So I used silver embossing powder instead - it doesn't give quite as realistic a "grout" result, but I like it all the same...

Added the perfect pearl mist, and metal foliage/flowers, same as Tim, but added some metal corners by 7 gypsies, and a trinket pin and brass key (eBay find) to the top of the tag.

Love that we will get to enjoy Tim's tags all year long, now.  If I get some extra time I may go back and do the February tag, but if not.... I'll just be happy to keep up with the new ones as they arrive.  Hope you have a chance to join in the fun - there are prizes involved!  And prize packages from Tim, packed lovingly (and usually *very* quickly) by Mario - come on.... what could be better???

Have a great day! 

~ ellen.