Monthly Archives: April 2014

Thanks and a Link

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I’d like to thank everyone who stopped by from What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday for their kind and supportive comments. That was really nice.

Thanks to the ladies at Glitter and Glue from WOYWW, I’ve found a new stash-crashy challenge!  It’s called Craft Hoarders Anonymous.  The rules are: use products from your stash; follow the rules of the challenge– theme, color, manufacturer, sketch, etc.; and the usual stuff like no back-linking, linking to the post and not to the blog entire, etc.  You can combine any number of challenges.  Challenges are biweekly. Occasional prizes are awarded to top contestants, and not by random draw.

This is a fairly recent challenge; they’re only on Number Six.  I like that other people around the papercrafting blogosphere have had the same idea as me — to quit buying so much stuff and use what you have!

I will add this challenge to the original Things to Visit post and my blogroll.

And now, here are three cards I made, using paper and embellishments from the Basic Grey “Spice Market” collection.  I love any products with that Oriental or Middle Eastern style.  No stamps here — well, one, the sentiment on the white card. Doesn’t it go perfectly with the style of the embellishments?

 

spicemarket

 

My office isn’t fully clean, but I really felt the need to make something.  I’m not even really sure why, but I feel I *need* to craft these days.  The blank card is my canvas, it is my way of expressing myself.  And it brings delight to others, as well.  I also make jewelry, although I have fallen away from that somewhat lately, and write fiction.  I’ve found I need to create something regularly, even something as small as a greeting card, or I feel my life has no purpose.

So, that being said, thanks for reading and commenting on my blog. It means a lot to me.  Have a good Sunday, everybody.

 

 

WOYWW 255

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WOYWW255

 

What’s on your Workdesk Wednesday.  Gosh, I hadn’t realized it’s been last Wednesday since I posted.  A week goes by so fast these days! I think most of what’s on my desk is what was there last week.

Long weekend or no, I haven’t made much progress in cleaning my office.  I bought a new bookshelf and put it together, put some things on it, but that’s about all.  I’m still settling into my new job, and I’m just so wrecked when I come home in the evenings!  The weekend was mostly about recuperating.  And, we went out of town to see family on Easter Sunday, and the hubster and I both found the drive home unusually taxing this time, so we didn’t get much done after that.  Went to bed way early, for us.

Excuses, excuses.  I guess i can shuffle a few things around tonight before i g to bed.  If I do a little every night, eventually it’ll get done.

What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday

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WOYWW2

What’s on my workdesk.  This is a card I made because I wanted — needed — to make a card.  It’s what I do to relax, and this has been a long damn week and it’s only Wednesday.  Washi tape and gems on kraft cardstock.  I like the combination of bright colors and kraft.

You can’t see it, but I really need to clean my office.  I mean, it’s getting hard to move around in here with all the boxes and the piles of crap teetering everywhere.  My ATC binder is on the floor, I see.  How did that get there?  Damn cats.  I can’t work in this environment.  Well, this weekend is a long weekend, hopefully I can take a crack at it.

Dazzles: The Negative Space

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The last technique I want to try with Dazzles is, working with the negative space of the stickers.  When you peel an intricate peel-off sticker off its backing to use, interesting patterns can be left behind in the form of the sticker material that filled the “empty” spaces of the design. These are stickers in themselves, and can be used on other projects. I’m going to use the left-behind parts of some of the previous projects I’ve done to make new cards.

Negative-space Dazzles require some special handling to use. Specifically, to pick up and use the many tiny, intricate pieces of a pattern like the inner parts of a snowflake, a butterfly, or a flower, you need a transfer sheet, which is a clear length of plastic with an adhesive back.  It looks like this:

 

daztransfer

 

Paper Wishes, who make Dazzles, sell these, as do the other companies that make peel-off stickers.  Transfer sheets are also useful for lifting and placing thin, intricate peel-off stickers like sentiments.

To use the transfer sheet, first prepare your Dazzle for transfer.  Cut it out of the sheet, so you can work with it without damaging other stickers on the sheet.

daztrim

 

 

(You’ll want to be more careful than I was here; I got pretty careless and sliced through another sticker.)

Next, remove the surrounding background remains of the sticker from around the outline, leaving only those parts you want to pick up.

 

dazborder

 

Then, lay the transfer sheet down onto the sticker pieces, and burnish down with a bone folder.

 

dazburnish1

 

The stickiness of the transfer sheet will grab the stickers and pull them from the backing.  And, by being stuck on the transfer sheet, the design will remain together and intact.  I recommend doing this step on top of a non-stick craft sheet, so the edges of the transfer sheet don’t get stuck to anything else.

Carefully peel up the transfer sheet, with the sticker pieces stuck to it.  If you see any pieces are not lifting away, lay the transfer sheet back down and burnish it some more.

dazlift1

 

Now lay the transfer sheet down over your project and position the stickers where you want them.  Burnish again with the bone folder.  The adhesive backs of the sticker bits will attach to the paper, and come away from the transfer sheet.

dazburnish2

 

Now again, carefully, peel the transfer sheet away, leaving the stickers placed on the project.  Again, if you see any pieces of sticker are lifting away with the transfer sheet, lay the sheet back down and burnish some more.

dazlift2

 

That’s all there is to it.  The transfer sheets retain their stickiness and can be used several times, although they won’t last forever.

You can see a video of this process on the Paper Wishes website, here.

Here is my final project.  I used the negative space from the leaf Dazzles I used on this project.

 

daznegcard

 

I added stems with a gold gel pen, to enhance the image of the leaves, but other than that, I am pleased with the Impressionistic style of the stickers.  The sentiment is from Technique Tuesday.  This is the first time I have used it. (NBUS)

I also made an ATC with the negative space of another sticker.

 

dazATC1

 

I finished it off with a border from the same sticker sheet.  If you are observant, you’ll notice that this flower is the negative space from the flower on the ATC in this post.

So, at long last, I have done every project I wanted to do with Dazzles stickers, and truly crashed my stash.  I’m going to take a couple days off, and then will be back with a new set of projects using materials I’ve never used before.

Thanks for reading along with me!

 

 

Dazzles with Colored Glitter

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I have this and one more project with Dazzles to consider, and then I will be quite ready to move on.  Any suggestions about what you’d like to see next from the stash list?

This card involves using the Dazzles as a border to contain white glitter on double-sided adhesive, and then coloring in the results.  I’ve seen this technique used in one of the Online Card Classes, and also done by Julie Ebersole on her blog.  It works like this:

Apply an adhesive sheet to a layer of cardstock (or maybe use a Xyron if you have one big enough?), uncover it, and then lay an outline Dazzle carefully down on the adhesive sheet and press it down.

 

dazglitter2

 

Adhesive to adhesive, this is a very tricky step.  You can see my first, failed attempt stuck to the scrap paper on the left there.  For this project you do want a nice, open outline dazzle with a lot of negative space to fill in. (But you might want to use one made with thicker lines than the one I used here — it was so delicate, it was really hard to manipulate.)  You can see how I did not get it quite right there at the bottom.

Once the Dazzle is down, cover the project surface liberally with a white or clear fine glitter.  Julie Ebersole recommends micro-fine.  What I had on hand was extra fine, so I used that.

 

dazglitter3

 

Press the glitter down onto the card surface.  Then shake off the excess, and burnish the attached glitter into the card surface with your fingers, so that it clings firmly, the excess is rubbed off, and the glitter assumes an even, tightly packed surface.  It should look something like this:

 

dazglitter4

 

Once it is all tightly burnished, you can color the glitter inside and around the sticker with alcohol markers.  The sticker, which resisted the glitter, will look rather like the leading in a stained-glass window, separating and containing the colored shapes.

This again is another tricky step — the glitter is a rough surface, not easy to color. You have to kind of dab at it gently with the brush tip of your marker, and build up color in small spots. Kind of a pointillist technique.  The markers I am using here are American Crafts Chromatix markers, but you can use any alcohol markers.

 

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This is the finished project:

 

dazglitterfinal

 

I’m not going to lie, this project was not easy, and I am not happy with the final result.  I had real trouble getting the sticker to cleanly attach to the adhesive surface, as you can see.  And in the end, my glitter did not burnish thickly and evenly to the adhesive cardstock.  There seemed to be a lot of empty, unglittered space on the panel.  Whether this was because my adhesive was not sticky enough, or because I did not use micro-fine glitter, I don’t know.  Maybe a combination.  I tried to supplement the glitter with a second layer, filling in gaps with liquid adhesive, Glossy Accents — but this gave the piece a bumpy appearance, which you can’t see too well in the pictures, but it’s there. Also, the coloring — it’s blotchy and just not good.  It looks better IRL than it does in the photo (honest!) but it’s still not great.

I have tried a variation of this “coloring glitter technique” before, in one of the Card Classes, and that also did not turn out too well.  Here it is on my other blog.  Here, I stamped on DCWV glitter cardstock with Staz-On ink, and colored with cheap alcohol marker (Bic Marks-It, I think.) The problem here is, the coloring came out very splotchy and uneven, not attractive.

So I have not had good success with this technique. In lieu of afflicting you with more of my botched efforts, let me refer you to Julie Ebersole’s much more effective and beautiful version, which she even has a video for — here.

Thanks for sticking with me through the failure! Hopefully our last Dazzles technique will be better.

 

 

 

A Stamper’s Dilemma

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OK, so I have a dilemma.  I just learned that an indie stamp company that I wanted to buy some stamp sets from has gone out of business.   So those stamps are gone forever!  And I know of at least one other company that has gone out of business.

So now I am in a panic, thinking that all these indie stamp companies whose stamps I wanted to buy after my buying moratorium, will be out of business by then!  Well, not all of them, but maybe some.

What to do, what to do?  Should I break my resolution and buy these stamps sets before they’re gone, or tough it out?  Once these companies are gone, they are gone forever.  (Not that I wish that one anyone, of course, but it could happen.)  But once I have those stamp sets, I have them forever.

Plus, buying now would help support these companies.

Of course, this could all be an exquisite rationalization to allow me to cheat.

Thoughts? Advice?  Please leave them them in the comments below.