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30 June 2014

Wallpaper - The New Paper Pad

I love paper pads, but with a 6x6 pad costing roughly £5-£10 and a 12x12 pad at around £15 a time, they can get a little expensive.  One alternative is to go down the digital route, but that has its own hidden costs and limitations.

The other day, while looking for a new mirror at B&M Home Stores I happened to walk down the wallpaper aisle when a few rolls caught my eye.  Among them was this one:

Isn't it lovely? There's 52cm x 10m of paper on this roll, which works out to the equivalent of one 12x12 pad with 32 sheets, and two 6x6 pads each with 32 sheets, and paper left over.  And because it's all a continuous length it can double up as wrapping paper.  All that for only £4.99 - an absolute bargain! Even at £10 or £15 a roll, that's still amazing value.

The only downside might be that it's all the same pattern, whereas a paper pad will generally offer some variety, but if you choose a design with lots of different elements in it, you can make it go a lot further. 

Here are some of my favourite designs that I found on the B&M website:

14 June 2014

CASE Study Challenge #195

This week I'm joining in with the CASE Study Challenge (CASE stands for copy and steal everything, by the way).  This is the design that was set: 

And here's my interpretation:

I used white pigment ink on Kraft card. At first the white really stood out, but as it dried it seemed to fade a little. Maybe the Kraft card soaked it up. So although I like the result, it's not as punchy as I would have liked. 

Then I thought about stamping with acrylic paint instead, to get a bolder finish, so that's what I did here:

The result is definitely bolder, but it has a different look to stamping with ink. This was my first attempt at stamping with acrylic paint. At first I applied the paint directly on to the stamp, but I was a tad heavy-handed and some of the finer detail was lost.  So then I applied the paint onto an acetate sheet and then pressed the stamp into that before stamping on the card.  The result was much better doing it that way.  It's not as crisp as the ink-stamped version, but I think it has its own charm.

Finally, because the white was not very bold, I wanted to do a comparison with black ink, and here it is:

The design definitely stands out more in black, but I'm not sure which version I like the best.  I was thinking that perhaps the black version would make a nice sympathy card if the white mat behind the sentiment was changed to black.  I also thought that another version of the white using embossing powder might be a good way to make the white stamping pop.

I am entering the following challenges:
Moving Along With The Times - Clean and Simple

06 June 2014

Fleather / Faux Leather

Faux Leather from Kraft card

This is my first attempt at making Fleather or Faux Leather using Kraft card.  I first saw the technique demonstrated by Sheena Douglass on Create & Craft TV a few months ago. Since then she's posted a video on You Tube which shows the technique in more detail.

I've been itching to try it for ages, and I finally bought some Kraft card so it was time to give it a go.  I'm really pleased with this first attempt. 

Basic Kraft card on the left, Fleather/faux leather on the right

I used the Far Out Florals embossing folder by Sizzix, and coloured it using metallic copper and orange pigment inks from Hobbycraft.  I think I was too vigorous with rubbing in the water/glycerin because the surface was shedding fibres, and in lieu of spray varnish I used some old clear nail varnish, but the effect is amazing. It really does look and feel like old leather!  I'll definitely be trying this again.