Wednesday, 17 April 2019

Fashionably Late to the CKC April Party

What can I say?

As much as I LOVED the colours in the inspiration kit chosen for April's Counterfeit Kit Challenge, I was planning to give it a miss.  I had a fair bit happening in April and time was flying by way too fast.

I did, however want to do April's challenge for Scrap the Boys.  The theme is cake 🍰 and I knew just which photos to scrap!  I wanted primaries along with maybe green since the pictures themselves don't have much colour and Shimelle's Box of Crayons Collection jumped to mind.

Next I started rifling through some cooking themed papers...just because I have them.  Then it happened...this cut-apart sheet from Cosmo Cricket's Early Bird collection (remember these guys? 😭😭😭) jumped out at me and I knew where this layout was going to go! 💡💡💡

Now I know what you're thinking: "That's all well and good, Mama, but what does it have to do with the CKC challenge?"

WELL...firstly let's take a look at the inspiration kit for April.  It's the March 2019 Hip Kit Club kit and it's so pretty!

It occurred to me that my paper for this layout is just a more vintage/retro and slightly warmer toned kit with more red than pink and the green is more of an olivey grass green an the yellow is more buttery...and plenty of aqua and teal...and cream rather than white!

Next, we do our kit dissection as always!

Colours in Inspiration Kit:
Pinks (and a touch of red)
Emerald Green
Royal blue (with a bit of navy)
Mustard yellow

Motifs in Inspiration Kit (including embellies):
Polka dots (very large to tiny)/Circles
Geometrics and stripes
Continuous patterns
Painterly effects
Florals, butterflies, hearts, frames, tags, umbrellas, rainbows, leaves/vines, sunglasses, cameras, bows, holiday motifs

As always:
🎨If I pull a single sided sheet, I get to choose two for every double sided 😉
🎨Cardstock in the kit usually gets subbed with tone-on-tone patterned paper
🎨Some things I pull as needed such as buttons, brads, sequins etc since I have some on hand to use so I don't have to put them away
🎨For these challenges I imagine which of the kits for that month would I purchase (and I had some experience years ago) and base my overall kit with add-ons etc.
🎨I may require a selection of "extras" 😳😳😳
🎨I might cheat.  I mean I probably will, but for me there really is no such thing as cheating since a layout made is a story told and some stash used.  #winning

If you'd rather watch an unboxing of the main kit and all the add-ons, the lovely Jen Schow does a fantastic job here:

So now to my choices.  Since I started out with that great retro paper and added some less vintagey designs to help it work with a variety of photos and stories, I have decided to call my kit:


"Back to the Future" 😎


My Main Kit based on Hip Kits March 2019 Main Kit



Papers chosen to correspond with Inspo Kit:

The actual Cosmo Cricket paper I based this entire kit on isn't in my main kit, but all my choices were made to work with it or become a bridge to papers with less in common.

Hopefully you can identify how any of the papers in my kit correspond with the inspiration piece in some way.  The only exception is the rainbow paper in the centre which is standing in for the specialty paper.

Instead of the blue on blue heart print paper ("Saturday" from the Sunny Days collection by Maggie Holmes in the inspiration kit), I went with a navy paper with a huge heart in the centre ("Outpouring" from the Box of Crayons collections by Shimelle).

The following image simply shows the reverse of my choices and while some might work with the colours and feel of the kit, most wont and look a bit odd put together like that!

Embellishments for Main Kit:

🎨I first added the old "messed up" Studio Calico chipboard arrows and speech bubbles.  They have the retro vibe and there are enough colours that will work!
🎨Instead of the word Thickers, I went for two sheers of Heidi Swapp word chipboard
🎨One set of black Thickers as per the inspiration kit! 🙌
🎨Hand picked die cuts with a lot of Shimelle and October Afternoon.  I discovered Vicki Boutin's Color Kaleidoscope collections is rather reminiscent of Sassafras so in went a few of those pieces and since the exclusive die cuts in the Inspiration kit had some words I added some of those too.  Largish word die cuts and Thickers seem to be so hard for me to use 🤷
🎨Enamel hearts for enamel hearts but it wasn't going to be enough so those little guys from OA need to be used.
🎨Lastly, to sub for the bow clips, I threw in a couple of packs of flair badges and some fabric labels by Basic Grey.
It's actually pretty good considering it's me. 😂

Paper Add-On based on Hip Kits March 2019 Paper Kit

The paper add-on is simple a second set of identical papers so you don't have to agonize over which side to use.  I COULD choose duplicates too, or choose patterns which represent what is most likely the "correct" side chosen by the kit club for my own version of the main kit.  For my paper add-on, I choose a paper which reflects the "other" side of the papers chosen by the kit club.  The complication is each of my papers have their own "other" side! 🤣🙈.

If you watch the video above, it's much clearer!

The October Afternoon newspaper style paper is supposed to represent the photorealistic black and white reverse of the "Blissful" paper from the Sunny Days collection by Maggie Holmes.  I placed the papers for the "main" and "paper add-on" in the same position in both photos to make the comparison clearer.

Some are less obvious interpretation like the "Saturday" from the Sunny Days collection by Maggie Holmes in the inspiration kit.  Both the heart on the front and my choice for the back is more subtle.  Rather than tiny black vertical dashes on white, the reverse had black dashed horizontal lines on green which is "Countdown" and also one of Shimelle's Box of Crayons papers.

The "other side" of my paper add-on shown below

Cardstock Substitutes based on Hip Kits March 2019 Cardstock Kit

The Cardstock in the inspiration kit has 2 each of mint, blue, pink, yellow and 2 different whites for a total of 12 sheets so 12 tone-one-tone sheets go into my "cardstock" kit too!  It's one reason why my kit looks a tad unbalanced with too much multi colour, but when everything is mixed and blended together, it's a perfect balance, I promise!

I didn't even bother taking a photo of the reverse since I almost certainly wont be using that side.

Embellishment Add-On based on Hip Kits March 2019 Embellishment Kit

This is where my kitting started to go a bit awry. 🙈 
🎨One sticker sheet in the inspiration kit turned into...8.  
🎨One chipboard sheer turned into three, one set of Thickers and one roll of washi became two.  
🎨The bows were replaced by that box of leftover random pieces from past kits.  Surely leftovers gain me some bonus points? 
🎨Somehow that sheet of random Glitz dimensional stickers ended up there as well 🤷.

In my defense, a lot of the elements on the sticker sheets especially wont be used.  This makes my kit loo bigger than in really is.  The inspiration kits are designed as whole and several items are usually exclusive.

Pocket Page Add-On based on Hip Kits March 2019 Pocket Life Kit

I'm not currently doing Project Life (although I have plenty to catch up on), but I do use cards on layouts.
🎨I started by including that Cosmo Cricket cut-apart sheet which served as my reference for this whole kit as the basis.
🎨I also included a border cut-apart sheet also from Cosmo Cricket's Early Bird collection and the "Treat Yourself" cut apart sheet from Shimelle's Box of Crayons.  Not all the cards will work, but some will.
🎨I also pulled a bunch of random journaling cards and larger die cut cards/filler cards.
🎨The sticker sheet in the inspiration kit resulted in the same kind of problem as the embellishment kit.  One turned into...a lot!
🎨One sheet of gems became...three...but all three were partial packs!

For some reason, I don't tend to store my die cut and fussy cut flowers separately so I just pulled out the whole container to pick from as needed.  There is another ephemera pack in the inspiration kit, so the flowers are a substitute for that.  There were flowers in the two ephemera pack in the inspiration kits, but none in the die cuts I pulled out.  Flowers are a great general kind of motif.

Extras! 😳😳😳  

I really wish I didn't have to have an extras section, but it's really only due to the cake layout that set off this whole kit.  I felt there was already enough cooking themed stuff in the Cosmo Cricket papers that "wasting" space in the kit with very specific supplies just for one layout wasn't justified.

I don't always used themed embellishments, but certain topics just make me want cake...and coffee!

I also may have included some extra non-themed paper that didn't make the initial cut.  I know I know...🙈🙈🙈

Here is the side of the extra paper I'm most likely to use:

and the reverse (just in case):

Well congratulations on once again reaching the end of one of my blogging marathons.

At this point (having forked for the last 7 days to pick supplies, photograph them and finish this blog post) I think I'm going to declare this kit my April-May Kit!  Now it looks a lot less disturbing (and I have made bigger kits before), so 🙌🙌🙌.

Thanks sooo much for stopping by!  I really appreciate it and please check back for actual projects made with this kit!

The products I used are listed below:
This post may contain affiliate links.  By clicking on the items or making a purchase (at NO additional cost to you) you help support this site, so a big, pink THANK YOU!
Please rest assured I only recommend products I personally love!

Love and crazy kit collating,

Tuesday, 9 April 2019

TTCRD 9 April Challenge and Masking Tutorial

Hi lovelies!  Today I'm coming at you with my very first design team assignment for the Through The Craft Room Door Challenge.  This is a WEEKLY "anything goes" (any type of project and any theme) challenge with 2 design teams who alternate weeks to make projects showcasing the sponsor who often offers PRIZES!

This week's sponsor is a company called The Project Bin.  Here is a little bit about them:

The Project Bin was started because its founder, Denise Storck (a long-time stamper and paper-crafter), couldn't find a stamp that said "You are awesome sauce", so she decided to make her own! One thing led to another, and now her small business fills a niche in the card making industry for unique word art sentiments in the highest quality photopolymer clear stamps, made in the U.S.A.

Now that's something I can relate to since it's a phrase we use too!  The Project Bin are offering the winner a $15 Gift Certificate to their store!

In addition, I'm going to show you two methods of masking and watercolouring using different mediums.

As soon as I saw this cat stamp set in the shop I absolutely needed to have it!  They're not just any cats either - they're curvaceous and well nourished! 😻😻😻

My inspiration came from one one the sentiments so I knew this was a job that would require a rather lot of stamping and masking if I was going to use just two stamps to get...well at least 8 cats!

The first thing I needed to do was cut down a piece of watercolour paper to 1/4" smaller than my card front to give me a border(s).  I struggle with the size of a standard card size right after finishing with a 12x12" layout because it feels so small! 🤣 I went with 5x7" finished size.

I also wanted some people and the ones of an appropriate size and style were these postage stamps from an older Penny Black stamp set.  More masking to get rid of the frames!

I got a piece of masking film (which is just medium to low take translucent plastic with a backing so you can see perfectly through it)  and stamped one of each images with a waterproof solvent based ink like StazOn.  It takes some time to dry on the plastic so either give it time or blast it with your heat gun.

Next I cut out the cats using scissors rather than the dies since I wasn't sure whether they leave a white border.  The people were a little more complicated.  I used a craft knife to slice on the inside edge of the inner frame.  Through trial and error (mostly error 🤣) I figured it was better to cut away some of the hair than cut away too little and have a line in the way.

This could happen anyway as it did with the girl if you don't position the stamp exactly, but since she has long wavy hair we can disguise it! 👍

Now for all those cats!  The way masking works is that you mask what's in front as you add images behind.  Perfect for a stack of cats!  The first cat didn't need masking.  I used my MISTI since watercolour paper doesn't always stamp cleanly.  I used the back which was very nearly smooth, but if you prefer to paint on the side with more tooth then you can still stamp on paper way bumpier than this with the help of MISTI!

Apply the matching mask over the top of the first cat and stamp the second with some overlap so it looks as though it's a little bit behind.  Wipe down the masks before proceeding or you'll get ink all over your project (ask me how I know! 🙈).

Now move the second mask to cover the second cat (you may need to leave the first one in place too) and stamp cat number 3.  If you find you need more masks because the overlapping stamping will cover more than 2 cats, you can cut more (or I use the backing paper and tape it down because I'm all for expediency!)

Then "rinse and repeat" until you have enough cats to make you happy (are there ever enough cats?)

Once your ink is dry, grab some masking liquid or rubber cement.  Make sure you check the ingredients if you have allergies since some of these products contain latex.  Mine does.  I'm not allergic but it doesn't smell so good!

Paint over every bit you don't want the background wash of watercolour to touch.  You don't need to make it really thick, just make sure you have some coverage over all the cats and people.

It goes yellow as it dries and it doesn't take long.  I wasn't sure what it would do when exposed to the heat gun so I waited!

Using painters tape, tape down all sides of the paper to a flat surface to avoid warping.  Discover you didn't leave a large margin for said tape and regroup to formulate a new plan.  😳  Remember you have Removable Glue Dots and decide to try them.  I applied a generous amount to the back and stuck it to some scrap cardboard.

I'm using my Gansai Tambi watercolour palette simply because it has a great selection of blues and purples.  I used a medium brush with natural bristles and painted the background with water before going in with the colour.  It helps the colour spread and you can experiment with different amounts of water and different shades mixing together.

It will always dry a bit lighter and once it did I decided to go back with more paint.

Once I was satisfied (and believe me my watercolouring doesn't even come close to some other crafty ladies) it was time to peel off the masking liquid (This bit is really fun!).   It may leave a feint yellowish stain, but since watercolour paper (even very light paper like mine) is generally cream rather than white, I didn't think it made any difference.

Next it was time to paint the cats using Distress Ink.  I just smear some on a waterproof surface, add varying quantities of water and paint onto the dry cats.  Make sure the brush isn't too wet or it will bleed onto neighbouring cats.  My choice of Distress Ink was mainly due to the variety of colours especially neutrals that I had and the familiarity I have with them.  Even so, I messed up some of the cats and had to disguise them with white acrylic paint or black or whatever.  Some I'm pleased with and some not at all.  I definitely need to practice different colours of cat coats!

Eventually I got down to the little people!  First I used a very fine permanent black pen to fix any hair issues and decided on Inktense pencils.  I would have gone with Distress Markers if I had them, but the next best thing to get into tiny spaces was the pencils.  Even so, trying to shade the people to make them a little more natural was difficult.

Also, once Inktense dries, it becomes permanent ink so you can't reactivate with water.  You can layer colour or blend while it's wet, but generally you have to work quite fast.

By now my project had been glued down to the scrap cardboard for at least 2 days and been subjected to multiple layers of paint and water and plenty of heat blasting (mainly when painting the cats).  I had no idea how the Removable Glue Dots would fare after these conditions.

Time to find out! 😬

Not only this, but the paper was much flatter than I ever would have gotten from painter's tape!  Any warping while wet simply vanished after it dried.  I'm awfully impressed I have to say! 👍

And the dots peel off without a trace as if they were never there!!

The finishing touches - I chose to stick the card front to a piece of black cardstock just for a very thin border.  After my success with the temporary dots, I used Permanent Glue Dots to attach it.  Even with the super strong tape I find sometimes watercolour card fronts like to pull away.  This didn't - partly due to the removable dots helping it dry flat and partly due to the super strength of Glue Dots.

Next, I use lots of foam tape to make the card front stand out a bit and stick it to the card base.  Lastly stamp the sentiment a bunch of times so you can cut each word out individually with maximum space on either side and above/below.

Foam tape to adhere the words in a wonky way to the card and add a few sequins because let's be real - considering how much I usually pile onto my projects, this one is pretty much naked in comparison!  I hate wet glue since I'm not the most co-ordinated person, so my beloved Mini Glue Dots to the rescue!

Thanks for sticking with me to the very end!  Here is the final project in it's entirety:

I Was Normal 8 Cats Ago Card

I'm also entering this project in the following challenges:
2 Crafty Critter Crazies Challenge #25
Cute Card Thursday Challenge 576
Incy Wincy Design April 1 - 13 ANIMALS
Simon Says Stamp Weds Challenge Animal Antics 
The Crafty Addicts Anything Goes/Optional - in the pink #59
Alphabet Challenge Blog A is for Animals
Penny's Challenge #424 Anything Goes 


The products I used (or similar) are listed below:
This post may contain affiliate links.  By clicking on the items or making a purchase (at NO additional cost to you) you help support this site, so a big, pink THANK YOU!  I only recommend products I personally love!

Love and Creative Cardmaking!

Monday, 1 April 2019

Confessions of a Paper Addict Challenge Layout - Emo Child

The lovely Virginia Walker who is the brains behind her Confessions of a Paper Addict Facebook group has been busy many cut files and launched her Etsy shop last week.

To celebrate there was a weekend of games, challenged and a YouTube hop over in her FB group. The challenges closed early this morning, but do you think this rather tired Crafty Mama could even get a whole ONE finished (that'll teach me for thinking salmon en papillote was a good idea🙈)? 

I kinda threw in the towel when I thought I couldn't find enough emo style embellies (and in the right colours).  In the end I had waaaaay more emo-plausible embellies that I actually needed, but...🤷

I used the same brick wall cut file that Virginia used in this layout and figured I might as well scraplift it.  Hers came out much better and I think the contrast of the white against the colour worked so well.

I had fewer colours and the originally cream background kinda went grey after cast off spatter from mist I sprayed to mask a slight "issue".

Without this issue it would have been better since the silvery grey cut file and charcoal paste would have also stood out. I used so many manufacturers and even more collections (many from the vault!) that I can't even begin to list them all.

What can you recognize?

The journaling explains our use of the expression and the relevance to the photo. 

 Emo Child

Thanks for visitng!  I promise there really will be some card stuff in the coming week since it'll be my first project for the Through The Craft Room Door DT and The 100 Day Project starts tomorrow,  Should I or shouldn't I?? 🤔

Love and promises of promptness!

Sunday, 17 March 2019

So This Happened - TTCRD Design Team Spot

I have to say I'm pretty excited!

Design Team roles usually come in two main types - either designing for online challenges or for a retailer/brand.

This one is the former, except Through The Craft Room Door also has an electronic magazine so writing articles for the magazine is part of the role too and that's the bit that made this one really interesting to me.  I's not like I like writing much judging from my blog posts, right?  🤣🤣🤣
Sadly I found out just after posting that the magazine has been discontinued and the last issue just came out.  My acceptance was in January but I didn't get my start date til recently so haven't been privy to all the behind the scenes stuff

I think it was less than 24 hours since sending off my application that I got a reply inviting me join the team! 😮😮😮.  My term officially starts in April, so if you like to get your craft one, please join in the weekly challenges!

You can find the blog (with challenges) here: TTCRD Blog
The TTCRD Facebook Page
There is a public Facebook group too: TTCRD Facebook Group

That's all for today!  There are a few things I want to make sure I get done in March before I start making for TTCRD so stay tuned!

Love and caffeine fueled creating!

Saturday, 16 March 2019

Return to the Collection and RYS Challenge

This month over at Sara Scraps' Rediscover Your Stash Facebook group the product focus of the month is...letter stickers.  They're another one of those products that you can use in vast quantities and yet the stash remains undiminished.  Except Thickers where the very pack you want is always missing a critical vowel or T, S etc.

You get the idea!

Sara threw down a challenge to post a project using all the letter stickers while she and Khristina Sorge were away co-hosting a retreat.  A crafty retreat is exactly what I need need, but since I'm inconveniently located on the wrong side of the world, making amidst feeding hungry boys is the best I can do.

The layout I made that used the most letter stickers was one I made last year for a Paige Evans challenge and while it's basically done, I still want to add a few finishing touches.  Definitely cheating to upcycle it for this!  I'll post it in due course - (probably when I binge scrap all the other partially started Paige Evans challenges).

The other possibility is a rudimentary layout that originally began for a 2014 class by Shimelle called Return to the Collection.  I have a whole lot of partly finished layouts for a small holiday we took at about the same time. 

We rarely get away so despite being a short getaway and not far from home, it was a memory worth recording and in its own album since we crammed a lot into those few days.  We had a two day pass to Sovereign Hill and as a Janeite (yes it's an actual thing) I got a bit excited when I saw this guy leading his troops through the park before giving a rather lengthy speech about his conquests against the Russians (much my my amusement and NPCH's* consternation).

 Shimelle also used a 5x7 photo, but in the landscape view and I wanted the lines from the novel to serve as a kind of long title or journaling.  I applied most of it before peeling it off and throwing the layout back unfinished and pulled apart before it was even half done.  I just couldn't get it to work.

Five years later I was determined to get it done and I'm pleased to say I have, although with a LOT more of the page covered than the original prompt and my expectation required, but I'm reasonably pleased.

The passage of time allowed me to come up with new directions and adding supplies to the original ones I pulled out to use in the album.  I added a few extra layers of paper  - in particular paper with a notebook, text or bookish feel.  Even a strip of stickers on the My Mind's Eye sticker sheet I had been using looked like a row of pages so I shared it around the areas of embellishment.

The quote required smaller stickers and to be positioned next to the photo to get the proportions right (although taking up more page space than I initially hoped). 

I even managed to fit in a title and little bit of journaling.  For any given layout in a "themed" album, no page requires a lot fortunately!

And here's the finished page - the first finished page in the album! 


Love and alphabet antics!