Saturday, 31 July 2010

Sick of those free CDs - Think Again!

I've collected a number of the free CDs that come with newspapers and find the CDs and the cases are useful.  Here is one little project you could try. A mini photo album made from a double CD case. 

The stamp I used is from Crafty Individuals and the flourishes were cut with a Quickutz Die. 
I cut the patterned paper approximately 2.5 cm wider than the open case so that I could fold the paper over onto the inside. I also inserted a rectangle of co-ordinating paper inside the two  pockets to cover the fold of the case and give a more professional finish.
As this is for someone's birthday I made tags (4 in total) which can be mounted with photographs.  These tuck inside the case pockets and the two triangular pockets.

Alternatively, what about cutting some pretty plain papers to fit inside the pockets as notepaper or put cinema or theatre tickets inside, combining the card and the gift in one.

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Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Ice Cream for your Shopping Lists

I promised you an ice cream coloured memo board and here it is.

I chose the lovely colours to remind of summer and to brighten up my kitchen.  The peg is to hold my shopping list while I add to it and the pocket at the bottom will hold paper or a thin notebook for writing on. 

I used a cheap cotton canvas board, readily available in different sizes from most hobby shops and some discount stores.  This one measures 25cm 30cm.  If you want to make one yourself here are the details.

Crafty Essentials
 Canvas board
Acrylic paints in chosen colours
2 x patterned papers
2 x co-ordinating card stock
1 x wooden clothes peg
Ink pad in a complementary colours
2 x co-orinating ribbons
Ordinary paper stapler
Artist brush
Chipboard shapes (optional)
PVA glue (dries clear variety)
Glossy Accents
To mix the pistachio colour for the canvas board, I used Ultramarine Blue, Titanium White and Emerald   Green but you can use any colours you like.

Top Tip

Start with the lightest colour first and add pea sized blobs of the darker colours gradually to mix the shade you want.

  • Paint the canvas board in your chosen colours
  • To make the bunting flags, take the patterned papers and cut squares measuring 4.5cm x 4.5cm. (If you are using a larger canvas you may want to make the squares bigger and you will need more of them.  For this one I used 7).
  • Draw a diagonal pencil line on the wrong side of the paper and fold each half  to the pencil line to form a kite shape, then fold the top down to make the flag.
  • Next lay the flags at slight angles across the top of the canvas, overlapping them as you go.  When you are happy with the arrangement, glue them down using PVA glue.
  • Then take a piece of ribbon and lay this across the top of the flags, leaving enough to overlap the sides and fold around the back of the frame.  Staple the ribbon on the back in two places so it is nice and secure, dab some glue about half way across the front to stick the ribbon down and then staple again as before on the other side at the back of the frame.
  • Take the second piece of  ribbon and attach this as before, each side at the back about 2cm below the bunting.  DO NOT GLUE IN THE MIDDLE.
  • Take a piece of co-ordinating card stock and cut a rectangle, slightly narrower than the frame and about 7cm deep and glue to the bottom of the canvas using PVA glue.  
  • Cut a scallop shape, or any shape you want, from your second colour card stock and glue this in place along the bottom and at the sides, leaving the top open.  This forms a pocket in which you can keep paper or a small notepad for your shopping lists.  Decorate the edges if desired.
  • Using a co-ordinating colour of ink, colour the clothes peg on all sides.  Decorate some chipboard shapes (optional) and glue to the peg using PVA. When dried, cover the peg and shapes with Glossy Accents.

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    Saturday, 24 July 2010

    Another Crafty Spoonful

    As promised here is another altered art wooden spoon. 

    First I painted the spoon using a mix of Titanium White and Ultramarine Blue acrylic paint to make a light blue shade. When the paint was dry I glued a piece of narrow blue ribbon on the back as a handle to hang the spoon from and when this was dry I used PVA glue (the one that dries clear) to stick a piece of cream lace across the bowl of the spoon. 

    Next I used the PVA  to stick on the wooden hearts.  I bought these ages ago from an international seller on Ebay.  They are really beads with tiny holes drilled either side for threading but they reminded me of Dolly Mixtures and the colours were just right for this spoon.  When the glue was dry I coated the whole spoon, including the beads, with Glossy Accents to give a nice sheen and to seal them because they will be displayed in the kitchen. 

    I then took two chipboard hearts and inked them all over in dark blue and then as they were almost dry went over the top with a little pink to give a mottled effect.  I used the PVA glue to stick a button on each heart and when dry, coated them with Glossy Accents.

    Finally I punched a hole in the chipboard hearts using my Crop-a-Dile and threaded them with narrow ribbon of different lengths.  I stapled them to the top of the spoon handle, using an ordinary office stapler opened out and then tied a piece of wide blue ribbon around the staples and into a bow to finish off.

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    Thursday, 22 July 2010


    Watch this space for more altered art wooden spoons and a lovely memo board in ice cream colours.  Yummy enough for any kitchen!

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    Tuesday, 20 July 2010

    Pine Tree

    We went for a nice walk around a local loch on Sunday afternoon.  The weather was lovely:  blue sky, warm and sunny but with a nice breeze across the water.  The loch is a nature reserve and full of lovely wild flowers and grasses as well as migrating birds at different times of the year and deer.

    The pine trees looked lovely arching over the walkways and in some cases skimming the water's edge and I couldn't resist painting a small section of a branch.  I used SAA (Society for all Artists) watercolours and Bockingford 300gsm Not watercolour paper. 

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    Sunday, 18 July 2010

    A Spoonful of Crafting

    Now my kitchen has been decorated I wanted to add a few personal touches, shabby chic style of course.  Whilst stirring the risotto with my wooden spoon I realised that these would make interesting and appropriate decorations so I bought some long and some short wooden spoons quite cheaply and set about altering them.
    Here is the first one which I'm really pleased with.  If you want to try it yourself, here are the details.

    Crafty Essentials
    Wooden spoon
    PVA glue (the one that dries clear)
    Medium sized artist brush
    Patterned paper
    Glossy Accents
    Co-ordinating narrow and wide ribbon
    You don't have to use expensive patterned paper, anything in a colour you like would do.  I also added a cat to the handle but it could be left quite plain.

    This is a cheap and easy craft project which would keep the kids amused in the holidays.  They could use magazine or comic images to glue on the spoon then add a photo of themselves or a friend or pet.  Great idea for a kid's party as it's messy and produces a pressie to take home.


    Choose two co-ordinating patterned papers, I used pink striped and blue dotted and tear them into pieces about the size of a  2p piece.

    1. Cut a length of the narrow ribbon for a hook and glue this to the back of the spoon using PVA glue.  Paste a small square of white paper over the ribbon and cover this was PVA glue to strengthen.
    2. Brush small areas of the spoon with a thick layer of PVA glue and stick the paper on in a patchwork style.  Keep it random so as to look nature.
    3. Cover the whole spoon back, front and edges, overlapping the paper.
    4. When completely dry, cover the whole spoon with a layer of Glossy Accents to give a shine and seal in the paper.  Remember I made mine for the kitchen.
    5. When this is dry, tie the wide ribbon in a bow around the top of the handle.
    6. To make the cat I used a rubber stamp to stamp onto pale pink paper which I cut out.  I then added the eyes, whiskers and a small piece of ribbon for a collar and then covered with Glossy Accents and stuck onto the handle using PVA. 
    I am so pleased with the way this turned out that I plan to do several more to make a display but in slightly different styles.  Watch out for another post on A Spoonful of Crafting next week.

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    Friday, 16 July 2010

    Craft Community


    Goes to Angie at Angie's Craft Hideaway.  She came to my rescue when I tried, unsuccessfully, to add her blog banner and link to my site and very kindly offered to do it for me.  What a star.  Make sure you click on the link and have a look at her blog which has some lovely ideas and great craft projects.

    What a caring, helpful community crafty folks are!

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    Wednesday, 14 July 2010

    12" x 12" Scrapbook Layout

    Here is the finished page for the sketch layout I posted last week. The pictures are from Seaworld, Florida and are a mixture of our photos and postcards from a pack bought at the theme park, along with a pack of Scrapbooking papers and embellishments.

    If you want specific Florida theme park papers, there are several websites you can purchase from and I have given a link to one at the end of the post.

    I chose two different shades of blue card stock for matting the pictures and cut these with a wavy line cutter on my Carl Rotary Trimmer.  I arranged the pictures in a grid fashion and stuck the matted pictures to the page using double-sided permanent tape.  I tucked the picture of the Manatee in between two strips of blue wavy-line card stock and stuck the sub-heading 'Underwater Viewing' onto the top strip.

    The hidden journaling tag is made from the same blue card stock and tucked behind the top, central picture. To finish, I added the title 'Magic' diagonally across the page using these beautiful Amy Butler chipboard  letters.

    I love the finished page and although crammed with pictures, I don't think it looks too fussy. 

    Happy memories of the animals we've enjoyed seeing at Seaworld, Florida over many years.

    For Disney and other Florida Theme Park papers try

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    Friday, 9 July 2010

    Altered Art

    If, like me, you are a fan of The Body Shop you are also probably wondering whether you can do anything with the empty body butter and body scrub tubs.  These are a fair size, sturdy and very useful for storing crafty bits and bobs.  Here is an altered tub of Body Shop Body Butter which is pretty enough to use for trinkets or even to fill with talcum powder and a powder puff.


    Empty Tub
    A4 sheet of chosen paper
    Glossy Accents Glue
    Co-ordinating ribbon
    Double-sided tape
    Distress Ink (optional)
    Small artists brush

    1. After washing the tub use the base as a template to draw two circles from white paper.  One for the bottom of the tub to cover any label that won't come off and one for the top.

    2. Then  stick the white circles on the bottom and the top of the lid and leave to dry.

    3. Next cut a circle from your chosen paper.  I used the top layer of a paper napkin which gives a nice translucent finish.  Stick your paper onto the white paper circle on the lid using Glossy Accents glue and leave to dry.

    4. When the paper is completely dry, brush another layer of Glossy Accents over the top to seal it and give a porcelain effect. 

    5. Cut a strip from the same paper to go around the side of the base and glue on with Glossy Accents.  When dry, brush another coat of glue on the top as you did for the lid.

    6. Choose co-ordinating ribbon to go around the edge of the lid and stick in place using permanent double-sided tape.  I find glue marks the outside of the ribbon.
    7. As a final flourish I edged around the top of the lid with a Pen-touch Gold Pen, along the seam where the ribbon meets the lid.
    8. OPTIONAL:  I dabbed a little Tim Holtz Distress Ink in antique linen over the lid and side with cotton wool.  After about 20 minutes wipe off any excess that hasn't dried.  This adds to the aged look.
    TOP TIP!
    Using a paper napkin or similar tissue-based paper gives a lovely cracked glaze effect as the paper naturally creases and crinkles when glued and using Glossy Accents gives a nice sheen.

    Have a go yourself.  It's amazing what you can achieve and even if the end product isn't perfect, you may discover other techniques and ideas on the way.

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    Wednesday, 7 July 2010


    Time for another challenge! 

    Here is a sketch for a 12" x 12" page layout.  Those of you who saw the challenge layout on my old blog will see that yet again it's a busy page.  There are a lot of photos on here but that's the way I like big pages.  Have a go and see what you come up with and I'll post a picture of my finished layout in one week.

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    Monday, 5 July 2010


    I'm busy  trying to decorate the lounge at the moment but probably have more paint in my hair than on the woodwork.  I'm still managing to do some crafting though and have almost finished 1 of
    3 ATCs for this month and as usual will post pictures of them after the swap date.
    In the meantime, here is a picture of our cat Smudge, laying in her favourite place.  She's a bit miffed at the moment though because everything smells of paint but she'll soon come round. 
     I think a tin of tuna fish should do it!

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    Saturday, 3 July 2010

    Watercolour Painting

    Whilst out walking a couple of months ago I saw these rose hips on a bush by the side of the path and picked a couple of stems.  I always keep a supply of  easy seal plastic bags with me so that the flowers I pick stay fresh until I get home and put them in water. 

    I used Winsor and Newton Alizarin Crimson for the berries and SAA Sap Green mixed with a little Ultramarine Blue for the leaves and stem. 

    The SAA, or Society for all Artists has a fantastic on-line shop, with huge discounts for members.  Membership is very reasonable and includes Paint magazine, full of useful advice and step-by-step painting projects.