Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Fairy and Elf Christmas Banner

Well hello bloggers, Samantha here! Right this weeks project is a Merry Christmas banner that I made for Sheena Douglass's latest release dies and stamp range. Primarily using the fairies and elves sets and the Poinsettia too! This takes a little time as it is a big project, but one that will be treasured year after year!

Products used :- Sheena Douglass fairy and elf dies and stamp sets, Sheena's poinsettia die and stamps, Sheena's stamping card, Kraft card, Gold satin card, Collall tacky glue and Pinflair glue gel, Stick n stay, Crafters Companion decorative uppercase alphabet dies, Distress inks and markers in crushed olive and festive berries colours, Vintage photo, antique linen, scattered straw, tattered, rose and black soot distress markers, Coffee Archival ink, Iridescent green and red silk paints, Iridescent glitter, 3 metres of hessian strip.


Step 1 Using Sheena's Stamping card, (great for most paper craft needs!) cut out 28 fairies and 28 elves, 28 scrolls, 14 fairy wings, 14 large Poinsettias, 14 small Poinsettias and 14 poinsettia centres. Only emboss 7 of each of the fairies and elves, 14 scrolls, 14 fairy wings and ALL the poinsettias! 

Step 2 Next you need to lay the stamp onto a glass mat, (it can help to stick it down with a stencil glue or stick n spray if it's a small stamp). Then ink up with coffee Arichival ink and lay the die cut image face down carefully from the head first for fairies and elves, and lining up one part at a time, pressing the card carefully onto the stamp rather than the stamp onto the die cut. It's much easier to line up each part perfectly this way. Repeat this process with all the pieces that have been embossed. Also you need to stamp onto another piece of Sheena card the back of the fairy and elf 7 times each and cut the top part from the dress and jacket up, out by hand to avoid cut lines appearing in the backs of the elves and fairies.

Step 3 Colouring all the STAMPED images is the next part! You can use any colours that suit you but I've chosen a simple scheme of crushed olive and festive berries distress inks and markers, with a few more colour markers for the skin tones and hair. Do these first as it's always best to do the lighter colours first then I like to use the markers just highlighting the edges of the images and then picking up more of the ink watered down slightly from a mat or tile with a brush!, and using it to colour the rest of the fairies and elves fronts and backs, including the hand cut layer. Also using some cut n dry foaming the ink pads of the same colours, colour the edges of each side of ALL the die cuts. Using the cut n dry again ink around the scrolls front and back using the contrasting colour for the holly in the corner. Alternating the two colours so you have 7 of each colour. Next use the cut n dry again, using the red ink and starting from the centres of each poinsettia drag the colour into the centres of the petals then with the green, colour the edges of the petals. For the fairy wings use the iridescent red and green silk sand just lightly edge the wings with the red and the centres with the green! Then use stick n stay on each wings and cover with glitter.

Step 4 Using the iridescent red and green silks highlight areas of the fairies and elves and paint the poinsettias completely.

Step 5 With the Collall tacky glue stick two middle layers together for each fairy and Elf and line them up perfectly then glue the back and front coloured layers on and the extra back half piece. Then shape the poinsettias petals with a ball tool and foam mat or just use your fingers, and glue a small flower onto a large flower offsetting them and the centre last with Pinflair glue gel. Put 2 fairy wings back to back with glue and attach to each fairy.

Step 6 The next part is to cut out all the letters for MERRY CHRISTMAS form both Kraft card and satin gold card, using Crafters Companion decorative uppercase alphabet dies. Shadow each letter with the Kraft card letters behind the gold, just offsetting them with tacky glue. Then glue the scrolls together also and line them up alternating colours and glue the letters on them in order. Attach a poinsettia to each scroll at the bottom with glue. Attach each scroll to the arms only of the opposite colour fairy or elf!

Step 7 I only had a light green hessian strip so I coloured it using my distress inks of the same colours.. The final part is to hook each fairy and elf over the strip and position them evenly apart and glue with Pinflair glue gel under the scroll. Just finish with tying a bow at either end of the strip!

Any questions as always we are happy to answer!

Until next time, Happy Crafting!
Samantha and Antony

Monday, 20 July 2015

Christmas Bauble

Hi there! Antony here... well we don't like to think about it... but Christmas for us crafters is already here!
So the project for this post will show you how to make your very own unique Christmas Bauble.

The products I have used for this project are:- Pinflair Glue Gel, Pinflair Glue-it, Pinflair Pearl and Clear Pearl Wands, Pinflair Dark Green Buff-it, Pinflair Ice Diamond, Acrylic 2 part Bauble and a fir cone!
You will also need a paint brush and a non-stick craft mat.

Step 1 Before you start to do anything make sure that your fir cone will fit inside the acrylic bauble. In this project I used a 10cm wide bauble.

Step 2 Using a palette knife I scoped out a small amount of Buff-it craft polish and put it onto a non-stick craft mat. Then using a paint brush I added some water to the Buff-it polish and started to paint the fir cone with it. You will need to keep adding water to the Buff-it when it starts to dry out.
Continue to paint the fir cone until you have covered it all. Leave to dry for about 20 minutes.

Step 3 Use the Pearl colour Pearl Wand to add pearl drops to the inside of both halves of the acrylic baubles. This will give the illusion of snow! Leave to dry for about 45 minutes to an hour. Normally the Pearls will dry within 10 minutes on paper, but will take considerably longer on acrylic or glass.

Step 4 Using the Pearl colour Pearl Wand start to add faux snow to the fir cone. You may need to do this in a few steps, allowing the Pearl Wand decoration to dry in between holding and moving the fir cone. Once finally finished leave the fir cone to fully dry. An hour should be about right.

Step 5 Now start to decorate the outside of the acrylic baubles, this time using the clear Pearl Wand. The clear Pearl Wand will go on milky, but will dry clear. I placed the pearl decorations exactly where I had decorated them on the inside. Again allow 1 hour for drying time, or until the pearls turn clear.

Step 6 Using Pinflair Glue Glue squeeze some glue into the bottom of just one of the acrylic baubles and then position your decorated fir cone onto the glue. Leave this to dry for at least 3 hours.

Step 7 Finally after everything is dry shake a smallish amount of Pinflair Ice Diamond into the same half of the acrylic bauble as where you stuck the fir cone. Use Pinflair Glue-it glue all round the edge of the bauble then place the two halves of the bauble together, making sure that you line up the baubles hanging hole.

Step 8 For a finishing touch and a way to hang your decoration use some ribbon and thread it through the baubles hanging hole and finally make a bow and attach it to your decoration.

As well as making a unique Christmas tree decoration these baubles would also make a fantastic gift at Christmas as well.

Until next time, Happy Crafting!

Samantha and Antony

Thursday, 16 July 2015

Fairy Wall Plaque

This project has been created by Samantha, the detail is breath taking, the more you look the more you see. So without further a word I will hand you over to her so she can explain how she created this beautiful colourful masterpiece!

Step 1 To create this fairy themed wall plaque I have Used a large cardboard rectangle, a large heart aperture and a smaller heart too. Take the heart aperture and with gardeners twine, wrap it around the heart aperture till its full covered using a wet glue like cosmic shimmer or Pinflair bookbinding glue on the heart board to secure it. Next layer some spiders web material or other textures onto the large rectangle and glue it down. I also used a strip of hessian and some die cuts too for further texture. Then add the fairy door (from Stamps Away) to the left hand side of the piece and secure the aperture heart half off the corner with a strong wet glue and the smaller heart nestled inside but not touching the other heart.
Die cut each fairy 4 times from card (about 240gsm) and do the same with other foliage, grasses and flower and butterfly dies (in this case mostly from the Tattered Lace collection) and some word dies from Tonic too. When all cut out glue each matching layer to itself till you have a really thick die cut shape.

Step 2 Arrange all the solid shapes then over the background and stick in place. Next paint the whole thing with either black gesso or black acrylic paint. Once dry (which you can speed up by using a craft heat tool or even a hairdrier) Please note that if you have use PVA glue to add additional texture be careful if using a heat tool as the PVA will bubble.
 It's now ready to paint with Pinflair Liquid Buff-it paints!

Step 3 Using several colours of Pinflair Liquid Buff-it, add as little or as much as you like to different areas. Use one colour at a time and a dry brush for this technique and as little paint as possible to begin with and blend one colour into the next for a seamless look or thicker for a more striking look. I used the Ice Blue and Silver watered down over the door for a silvery wood wash, mixed gold with Caribbean Blue to get a lovely green for the foliage, and the other colours I use are silver, Amethyst, Lavender, Gold and Hot Magenta and Caribbean blue.

Step 4 Leave the fairies completely black and use some Pinflair Pearl Wands to create texture pearls on the fairies and when dry gently brush the edges with Gold Buff it polish. Add some glitter glue to the stars, butterflies, moon and door plaque and paint most of the words gold, except the dream word arranged on the heart aperture where I used a gradient of Liquid Buff-it colours.

Tip:-  All the Pinflair Liquid Buff-it colours are mixable, if you plan to mix large quantities of your own unique colours you will need to store the mixture in an small airtight container.
Remember to wash all tools after use with water.

Until next time, Happy Crafting!

Samantha and Antony

Thursday, 9 July 2015

Creating a Design on a Canvas Bag

Hi there Antony here for my first post. This is a fun little project and you can use any stencil to achieve a unique look all of your own. The painted effect you see above may look difficult, but it’s easier than you may think. The products used on this example are Pinflair Liquid Buff-it and Viva Decor Diamond-Tex glitter paste for fabric. The Liquid Buff-it paints can be used on fabric as well as wood, polystyrene, clay and cardboard.
The colours used in this example are:- Antique Gold, Gold, Silver, Ice Blue and Caribbean Blue.
We have also used a Cheetah stencil and Onyx colour Diamond Tex glitter paste.
Other things you will need:- Palette knife, Stencil Glue, cotton bag, some paint brushes, a foam applicator brush/sponge and masking tape.

Step 1 Firstly place your cotton bag that you wish to decorate, on to a flat surface. Mask off an area using masking tape. In the case of the example I have masked some squares. Make sure the masking tape is stuck down well.
Now using a foam brush or sponge start to dab firstly the Ice Blue Liquid Buff-it and then the Caribbean Blue. After you have dabbed on the colours slowly remove the masking tape.

Step 2 Now take a stencil, in this case a beautiful cheetah. Apply Pinflair Stencil Glue to the reverse of the stencil and let the glue dry for about 15 minutes. Once dry de-tack the glue by simply placing you hand on the glued area and lifting it off. Repeat this a few times.
Now place the stencil in the middle of the four blue squares. To really press the stencil into position I used an old brayer... it worked a treat!
Next I used a palette knife to apply the the Onyx Diamond-Tex Glitter Paste through the stencil.
Leave the Diamond-Tex for about half and hour to 45 minutes for it to dry. 

Step 3 Paint on the Silver Liquid Buff-it using a fine paint brush making sure that you keep within the stenciled area. Because the Diamond-Tex glitter paste is slightly raised painting
within the area is quite easy as the brush is almost guided a long. Leave to dry for about 15 minutes and then apply the Antique Gold Liquid Buff-it. 

Step 4 Now go over with the Gold colour Liquid Buff-it and let it dry. Finally to achieve the graduated effect from one colour to another, use a paint brush that has really short
bristles. Apply a really small amount of paint onto the paint brush and using a circular motion gently apply the paint over into the colour.

Step 5 Keep gently applying the paint in small amounts until you get the soft graduated blend of between the colours.

I also used the same technique to create a wall art canvas. The cheetah was done using Liquid Buff-it but for the background I used different colours of Pinflar Buff-it Craft Polish.

Remember to clean all paint brushes and stencils used with Liquid Buff-it and Diamond-Tex  with warm soapy water straight after use.

Tip:- if you haven’t got a short bristled paint brush, make your own by cutting down the bristles of an old one, the brush hasn’t got to be good to achieve the blending of the Liquid Buff-it colours.

Until next time, Happy Crafting!

Samantha and Antony

Monday, 6 July 2015

Achieving the look for "2 Crafting Minds"

Well firstly let us both welcome you to our crafty corner here on the internet. We hope you will enjoy our crafting adventures as we show you many different techniques over the following months and hopefully years!

Well as it is our first post on our blog it is only fair that it's ladies first!
Samantha loves using plenty of texture and colour in her designs so designing the look for
"2 Crafting Minds" was right up her street!

Over to you Samantha!...

The banner piece that I made for this blog is fun to do with any words but we wanted it to be specifically crafted by hand rather than computer generated as that's what we’re all about. However Antony did have to convert it to a digital format so that we could finally use it here on the blog... but his bit is later!


I started by choosing a font I liked, and in this case I actually used templates I’ve had for a while, in a funky style. First I drew around each chosen letter (obviously some more than once) onto Sheena’s stamping card, then again onto mount board. And the same for the number 2, but also cut another larger layer. Then cut these out carefully with a craft knife with a sharp blade.

I then chose different texture embossing folders for each letter and the number, embossed the Sheena card letters then stuck them with wet glue to their counterpart mount boards. 

Next paint each one in an individual different colour (I’ve done it in rainbow order) Then using black soot Distress ink, highlight a few raised areas and edges of the letters. and repeat this process with Pebeo silver gilding wax rub the tiniest amount over the raised area with a finger tip and all the edges too. 

The background plate is made from a rectangle cardboard plaque/sign. First give it a good coat of Pinflairs Rust it paint, using the sponge dabbers. Once dry do it again this time being a bit more random and splodgy (is that a word?). Again when dry, make it thicker and more textured in places. Dry then using a palette knife take some copper glitter paste from Pinflair and taking off most of the excess, pounce the knife onto the Rust it catching the raised areas.

When nearly dry repeat the process with the aqua glitter paste too but using even less and barely touching the surface.
When fully dry, arrange all the letters and number so they are evenly spread but overlapping and at alternate angles, and glue in pace with Pinflairs 3D glue gel.

But before I stuck all the letter to the background plate I first took a photograph of what I had made and emailed it to Antony. So I'll hand you over to Antony so he can explain the next process of creating our look! 

 Once I had the photograph I opened it up in my favourite editing program Adobe Photoshop.
I firstly digitally traced round the outer edges of the letters and number. Then I changed that traced line into a shadow and posted the first version back to Samantha.
Although we both liked the look it wasn't quite right.... "What about a shadow round each letter" says Samantha. I tell her it is not a problem, but it will take an hour or 2 to do... but ask her to send me a photograph of each letter separately then the whole process will be a lot quicker.
Sadly she had already glued everything down!
So after about an 1 and a bit I traced round each letter and the number, added shadows to each, then deleted shadow where they shouldn't be.
Next I took the photograph of the background plate, squared it up and added an inner bevel.
After all of the effect came the most important part... correcting the colours.

 So there you go that's how between us both we created this very colourful and unique branding to our blog... 
2 Crafting Minds.

Until next time, Happy Crafting!

Samantha and Antony