Friday, 22 June 2018

My First Junk Journal

I've been wanting to make myself a "junk journal" after discovering them on Facebook a little while ago and realising that they are what I've been hoarding stuff for without even knowing it!  All the papers and ephemera that were too pretty to throw away suddenly have a use at last.

What's a jun journal?  Well I have realised that it is whatever you want to make it!  Some people recycle old hardback books to make the covers and add their own signatures, others make inserts for ready made "traveller's  notebooks", and others make the whole thing from scratch.  The sky's the limit.

I was a little unsure where to start so I joined a mentoring scheme on the amazing Friendly Junk Journal Facebook Group and was assigned a volunteer tutor, Angela, to guide me through the process of making my own journal over the course of three months.

In the first month I made myself a cover from card, decorated it and made my first signature, sewing it into the cover.  Month two the task was to create a decorated signature and sew that in too.  In the third month I learnt about tuck spots and journalling cards and added them to the signatures.

I soon learned that I could have done with somewhat thicker card for the cover, as the fatter the journal get the more the cover bends, and that trying to stamp onto pages after they are sewn into the signature is not at all easy to do well.

I wouldn't say it is finished yet, as I want to add a bead dangle to the spine and will almost certainly add more decoration to the pages, but it was a brilliant introduction to a fun craft and I have learned a lot from my wonderful teacher Angela and fellow mentee Olivia.

Anyway, here are some of the pages from my first junk journal - but it certainly won't be my last!  The theme I chose was Folk Art, and with the exception of the bookbinding awl, thread and needle and a couple of Russian Doll colouring pages from the internet everything I used was already in my crafty stash.

Thank you for looking xx 

Colour themed ATCs

I have had some mixed media fun with the ATC swap on the My Make Forum this month.  The brief was: three ATCs, all mainly the same colour.

I chose aqua as I'd just bought some aqua metallic paint from our new local craft shop and wanted to try it out!

The first one has a collaged paper background edged in Peacock Feather Distress Oxide.  I mixed some of the metallic paint with Grunge Paste through a starry stencil, and once it dried I overstamped in black archival with more stars and a sentiment, and finished off with a star sequin.

The middle ATC has a Distress Oxide background of Peacock Feather and Cracked Pistachio.  I used the blended Grunge Paste as before but with a butterfly and stars stencil, then added some patterning to the butterfly's wings with metallic pen and some tiny sequins. Again I finished with a couple of stamped sentiments and some sequins in different shades of aqua.

The final ATC has a patterned paper background, inked with Peacock Feather, and I used the Grunge Paste through a HOTP feather stencil.  Again I coloured in detail with a metallic pen, stamped and added sequins as before.

They are now on their way to the States for a swap, who knows where they will finally end up?

Saturday, 16 June 2018

Some forum swaps

I joined in with the ATC and Fridge Magnet swaps on the MyMakes forum in May: the theme for the magnet was the Royal Wedding and the ATCs were to be one for a boy and one for a girl.

The image that stood out for me from the Royal Wedding was that marvellous doorway of greenery and flowers so I based my magnet on an arch of green FlowerSoft with punched flowers and dots of Liquid Pearls and glitter glue.  The centrepiece was a crown embellished with more glitter glue in regal colours, above Harry and Meghan's initials, they year and entwined wedding bands.

The backgrounds for the ATCs were made with Distress Oxides.  I dabbed them onto my craft sheet, spritzed with water, then the card was dragged through, dried and repeated.  I stamped the cute baby hand and footprints in Distress Oxide and highlighted them with clear Wink of Stella, then after spattering with silver paint I added some more stamping and some bows and embellishments from my stash.

Monday, 15 January 2018

Cat cards

My sisters, like the rest of the family, are cat lovers so it wasn't hard to choose a themes for this year's birthday cards (they are twins). 

For one I used a cute set of little cat silhouette dies on a shaped card with some glittery bird and flowery card and a diecut greeting.

For the other I used a template from this month's Crafts Beautiful and paper-pieced a very glamorous kitty and die-cut her a pink bow.

Saturday, 18 November 2017

Napkin decoupage box

There are so many pretty paper napkins these days. I found one with beautiful pelargoniums that picked up the colours of my craft room curtains perfectly so I picked up a couple of paint tester pots and decoupaged a storage box that was starting to fade.

I posted a picture of this box on the My Makes forum and was asked to create a step by step for it. Please do pop over to the forum and have a look at my tutorial , including a useful tip I picked up from YouTube on how to smooth out the delicate paper without tearing it.

I have another half dozen of these storage boxes in various sizes, they are so useful for holding crafty bits and pieces and unfold flat for easy decoration. Now which paper napkin shall I choose for the next one... 

Saturday, 4 November 2017

Mystical Swaps

Back in June I took part in a Mystical themed set of swaps on the My Makes Forum.  We had to upcycle something for one swap, create two ATCs for the second and the third was an "any craft" swap.

For my Upcycled item I took an old travel sweet tin, prepared it with gesso then sponged it with Vintaj Patina paints in Moss, Verdigris and Jade.  When it was dry I used a black Promarker to draw a dragonskin pattern all over the base of the tin. 

To decorate the lid I glued on a brass filigree shape then created a dragon's eye with a printed eye covered with a glass cabochon and made a setting for it with tiny bronze seed beads strung in a circle to fit the cabochon.

 I also used a dragon's eye theme for a necklace: I set a similar dragon's eye and cabochon into the bezel of a brass key and attached it and some charms to a copper chain.
The ATCs were a cute little dragon made with Tattered Lace Tiny Tubs dies on another hand drawn dragonskin background and a pretty die-cut and inlaid unicorn on a rainbow starry background.

Fun with ATCs and Creative Prompts Part 3

Week 7: Stencil with dots, circles or squares

For this week's ATC I decided to use one of my favourite and most versatile stencils, TCW's Mini Well Rounded.  I tinted some Grunge Paste with pale blue acrylic paint and stencilled over a Distress Oxide background, then finished off with some vintage images from Pinterest. 

Week 8: Use watercolours or water based media
I got my old watercolours out for this one but wasn't completely happy with the results so went for Distress inks instead, dabbing two shades of pink and an orange on my craft sheet and spritzing with water then dragging watercolour paper through repeatedly until I got the effect I was after.  I then stamped the sentiment with green Stampin' Up ink and knocked it right back with Picket Fence paint, topped with clear Wink of Stella.  Finally I got the watercolour set back out again, as it had exactly the right purple I wanted for the splatter effect and the edges of the ATC, and finished off with a sparkly epoxy sticker.

Week 9: Work in black and white and 1 other colour
I really enjoyed making this one: black card with white Grunge Paste through the Tim Holtz Splatters stencil, then I found the pinkest, sparkliest cardstock in my stash and die cut a feather and some more of those tiny butterflies with a printed sentiment to finish it off.  I think this would work well scaled up as a card too.