2014 Goals

Open doorsFor me autumn is the time of year to look forward. With our German team at stahldust campus we were looking at our visions last month and this month we are going to make plans to make part of these visions reality. My work demands are hopefully going to change next year and I am proactively redistributing my available time. I have learned over the years that early planning helps me to get to where ‘I’ want to go rather than responding to what happens around me.

There are so many possible doors, who knows which one will open!

I have a vision for my art, I want to make it part of my other training, coaching and consulting work. I have made small steps already but it is time to go forth and make this vision come true. How? I have no idea just yet. But that is the nice thing about visions, they do not have to be realistic. I have no doubt, that I will work something out this month to get this plan rolling.

Oh and whilst I am at crazy dreams….. I would like to exhibit one of my pieces at the RSA Summer Exhibition. There I said it :)

Cacti and Succulents ATCs

Succulent and Cactus Swap 1It took me a while to get back to it, but I recently participated in another ATC swap. Which means, I must be having some time for art :)

Succulent and Cactus Swap 4

The theme was succulents and cactus (but I think it should say cacti … you know, both being plural or me being picky?) Succulent and Cacuts Swap 2

I used inks, acrylics, pan pastels and a PITT Artist Pen and remembered why it is such fun to focus and work on a theme!Succulent and Cactus Swap 3

Personalized scatter cushions

Have you seen the prices of those embroidered cushions? Astronomical!!

So we made some of them as presents ourselves. My niece and I played with Accucut dies and had to be inventive because we knew we wanted moustaches!!



This is the first one we made:Image

We used the Accucut paisley die cut and doubled it up to make the moustaches and were very pleased with our result :)

The next one was lots of fun too. More Accucut brackets, birds, butterflies, wings and a border – all die cut with different materials. ImageI have never worked with fabric and as a lesson, felt works best for die cutting and the stick on ‘no sewing’ method we used.

As an avid paper crafter, I am quite pleased to find a different use for my dies. It gives a lot of the shapes a new lease of live.

An now we are going to enter the Accucut competition. Thank you for opening it up internationally Accucut xx



Merci Pocket Album

I wanted to create a little album to give someone special some ‘Thank you’ vouchers.

I was in need of pockets and this little album is perfect! This particular pocket album design is by Lori Whitlock for my Silhouette cutter. But you do not need anything fancy, the colour and embossing combination would work great on a  normal greetings card too.

This month we do not have a design brief!! So I indulged  by starting with one of my favourite colours ever:  Golden turquoise acrylic paint. Just use paper that does not warp when painted. Water colour paper is good, but I am working a lot with lining wallpaper. When the paint has dried it is smooth and becomes quite stiff and works beautifully for 3D projects. And it works great with heat embossing. Did I mention that it is very cheap too?

I gave all my pockets two coats with the acrylic paint for a rich deep turquoise and the cards which slide into the pockets got one coat for a lighter colour. Both versions are very nice! I think it also helps to not paint too neatly. This way you will get some instant and interesting texture more like fabric than paint.

To emboss, I opted for my my favourite WOW stamps: Vintage wallpaper plus the rose from the Simply Amazing Set and chose gold embossing powder as a contrast to the  colour.

Voila……. instant designer look. It feels very rich and expensive! I will come back to this colour combination often, I am sure!

Now I just have to think about what I am going to write on those vouchers and slide them into the pockets of my album.

Embossed bedside table

When anything goes in the design team, I am drawn to embossing furniture (just because I have not worked out how to emboss my walls without making an almighty mess!)

I chose this little solid wood table. I use it as a bedside table and it came from my husband childhood bedroom. Considering how much time people spend these days distressing furniture, this came already distressed and I do not want to change that.

A couple of tips when embossing furniture:

  • Clean the item thoroughly removing grime and dust
  • Go outside and wear a mask (when heating old paint there could be some nasty fumes)
  • Distressed is the way to go! Any paint underneath the embossing powder might bubble under the heat
  • Try not to pick a windy day like I managed to do!
  • Chose a piece of furniture you can lift because you will have to tip it and  tap off the embossing powder

Here is the finished item ‘in situ’. I used Primary Indigo  to emboss.

Next I am going the do the piece on the other side of my bed which is a proper old bedside cabinet. I am thinking a repetitive pattern in silver could look stunning. Watch this space!

Heart Pendants

A very easy project this month! These pendants look like they are enameled and are quickly achieved with multi-layers of embossing. I used a sturdy die cut shape, you want it thick enough that it will not warp under the heat of the embossing powder. I used the Accucut Layering Hearts die cut and either  recycled cardboard or, a little more sophisticated for this project, mount board.
First I made a hole for the ribbon and then I started embossing. To achieve the enameled effect I actually embossed the heart five times with : WOW Primary Burgundy red and to get the really smooth, glass like finish, move the heat tool in small circles around the shape. I just added a little diamante and the ribbon but you do not have to stop there!
You can personalize your pendant with letters for example. Or maybe more sparkly stones!
I used: WOW Primary Burgundy red  as a base and then made the heart sparkle with Mojave from the Desert Sands Kit. The letters are embossed with WOW Gold Rich Pale. To give any metallic embossing powder an aged and tarnished look, I finish with a layer of  WOW Clear Braille Ultra High. This ampersand I like in particular, it is on one of my Accucut die sets:
I leave you with this thought:
is the triumph 
of imagination
over intelligence