Pretty In Pink (and a few other colours!)

Today I want to share more beautiful items I have received from friends.
Gisele sent an astonishingly beautiful card which really has to be seen to appreciate its full beauty, she even decorated the back and made a fabric pouch as an alternative to an envelope. She also sent me some lovely lace packaged so prettily. It wasn’t only that this was an unexpected arrival in the mail or that everything was so breathtakingly beautiful, Gisele also took the trouble to write words, as she said “came from her heart”.  Her words touched me so much and as I explained to her, she had no idea how timely they were, they were exactly what I needed to read and were a gift in itself.
More unexpected art and gifts. From Lynn a so pretty vintage tag and from Marie, one of my favourite images graces this card. Marie made a fabric and beaded ATC with buttons, lace and trim. Do I hear you all sighing?!!!
Marie also sent a pretty package which I had to photograph. A tag made with a chipboard L covered in glitter.
Inside Pretty In Pink art kit with buttons, a mini torso, trims, flowers. Many of these items I’ve not come across such as the pink measuring tape and sheet music ribbon also the large buttons and the fancy trims. I get the feeling that Marie knows I like pink!!!More cards. On the left, from Marilyn …… a very Marilyn style card. Now a card doesn’t get any more arty than this with a stamped and arty background. Plus more mail from Lynn, this time a card and more to be revealed in a second. The card has a vintage dressmaking theme with lovely trim and you cannot help but zoom in on the glass circle. Lynn even went to the trouble of altering a tin to house buttons. This is such a beautiful gift in itself and perfectly fits my decor! The lid is decorated with a cluster of flowers. Keys and bingo cards, tickets, mini stamp set, crocheted doilies and all tied with white seam binding, ripe for altering with colour.

All of these friends have left me speechless with their kind and generous hearts. I am lucky to be surrounded by so much art from different places and all so individual to that artist. Then as well as that, to have gorgeous new items to play with. Many of you will know that I am always hesitant of using gifts I receive, wanting instead to savour them, use them to stage art for photographs, etc,  but some wise people have said I should be using them so that is now the plan. Life is too short not to be using beautiful items. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for everything. Lynne x

Hey There Lifeguard!

I had today’s post all planned but as the sun is shining in my part of the world I decided to share some more of the bathing beauties from Divas D’Este’s Vintage Bathing Beauties CS (see the recent post “Let’s Dip Our Toes In The Water”).
When I select the CS I want to work with my next decision is what do I actually want to print it onto, photo, canvas, transparency, image transfer,  sometimes that is the most difficult part of the decision making. This CS was printed onto photo paper.
For all the cards I used Crafty Individuals paper pad,”The Seaside”.
I decided to keep embellishments to a minimum and make as much use as possible from the papers, here cutting around the shells to create a frame for the image. A bow tied from painted gauze adorns the top corner.
On the second card pattern paper torn and inked to form a border at the top of the card, a Prima flower with a scrap of the painted gauze.Bon Voyage (Crafty Individuals) stamped and tucked slightly underneath the image.
The third card inspired the title as she struck me as posing in front of the lifeguard, trying with all her might to catch his eye. I wonder if she succeeded!You know by now that I like to make use of every scrap, here the shells were cut from the cover of the paper pad!and used to create some decoupaging by cutting out a second shell and layering it over the first layer, tucking some hessian and gauze in-between.The fourth card is separate from the above as it is not DT art for Divas D’Este but as it is a bathing belle card and uses the same papers as above it made sense to include it in this post. You might recognise the stamps as they have been used relatively recently. They are all from Crafty Individuals. The stamped border uses stamps from one of their Elements sets (these Elements sets are very useful to have whether it be the seaside, postmarks, etc.)  A teeny stamped shell and scrap of gauze tucked into the bottom corner.  The bathing belle was stamped onto paper from The Seaside pack. I like when papers are subtle enough that stamping shows up clearly.
One project remains which I will save for a rainy day, or a sunny day, I don’t suppose it matters! In the meantime, if you plan on stepping out into the sun, please remember and take care. Lynne x

All Mixed Up

This post is a bit different as I thought I’d share with you pages I’ve made for a Deco Swap I am participating in. This is the third year I have participated in a Deco Swap at Katy’s Corner Yahoo Group. Dot Hay organises it all, forming us into groups and making sure everything runs smoothly. When participating in a Deco Swap there are certain rules:- they must be stamped, not to add embellishments that are too bulky as the pages are compiled  into books, work to the set theme and page dimension and work to deadline. They are fun but they can be challenging to make as you are making to specified themes and obviously you need to have stamps that will fit into those themes. Including myself there are 6 of us in Group B and we all pick our theme and page dimension then each of us has to make 2 pages for that particular theme and send them on. For instance texture was Nora’s theme so we all make 2 pages to her theme and send them to her and she them compiles her own book with our artwork and 2 pages she makes herself. So this is the list of themes that were set:-
texture
underwater adventures
autumn
a quote and a flower
turquoise, green, blue and purple
Of course as well as those themes I also have my own theme which I will reveal at a later date, mainly because I’ve not made my pages as yet!
Texture (stamps used – Oxford Impressions)
I gathered anything that had texture and tried to vary from rough to smooth:- artist canvas sheet, a tub of spackle, old papers, torn papers, glass bead gel, a crochet drinks coaster, gauze, lace, velvet ribbon and garden fleece placed over the stamped quote. All were dyed with the same colour but to different strengths to add variety. This set was amongst the most enjoyable to work on as I challenged myself to see how many different textures I could achieve and I liked the tactile quality.
Underwater Adventures (Stamps used – Oxford Impressions)
Watercolour paper sprayed with my homemade spray inks and gauze dyed with the same colours.
As I don’t own any underwater style stamps I made these pages as though the women are under the sea and sitting (or standing) on the seabed.
Autumn  – (stamps used Stampington & co)
The Autumn pages are another example of my homemade spray inks this time in green and orange. Imitation copper and gold leaf, feathers and dried leaves added to create an autumnal feel.
A pressed flower added to the centre of a stamped flower. Quite a few stamps were used on these pages to create subtle stamping on the background to create layers before stamping the main images. The cube stamp from this range is a brilliant stamp. This was my other favourite set.
A quote and a flower – (Stamps used – Stampington & co and Time To Stamp)
More stamps from the Fresh Flower Elements range.  Watercolour paper is the base once again, painted with washes of watersoluble crayons. Dyed lace and gauze embellish the page along with a Laura Ashley velvet brad which I stamped. Dusty Concorde Crackle Paint adds texture to the edges of the pages.
When working on Deco pages I like there to be a theme or link to both of them, whether the stamps, colours or embellishments.
Turquoise, Purple, Green and Blue – (Stamps used – Cherry Pie Art Stamps, Oxford Impressions and Stampington & co)
The final pages were a colour theme.  Initially when I read this theme I found it to be challenging until it dawned on me that I could use softer tones of the required colours.
Watercolours made the base onto which I stamped vines and birds then stamped my beautiful Botanica stamp (Lynne Perrella).
The turquoise flower and lace add a pop of colour.
If you have never taken part in a Deco Book Swap I highly recommend doing so. There are new challenges set as a stamper, it makes good use of your stamps as I have found if I don’t have a particular stamp for a theme it gets the brain working to make use of what stamps I do own. On completion of the Deco you have your own book full of pages that the other people in the group have created to your particular theme, it is always interesting to see how everyone interprets the theme.
Once I’ve completed my part of the Deco I will share with you. I doubt that it will come as a surprise what my chosen theme is!  Lynne x

Parisian Fleur

In recent weeks I’ve been having a bit of a much needed re-organising of my supplies that also includes items laid aside for altering. It is fun when I come across something I have been meaning to alter, something that I have forgotten that I stored away for that purpose. That was the case with the base of this hanging. I wonder if you will be able to guess what it was in its former life.
This is my entry for Pink Saturday which is actually a gift for a friend.
The upcycled item has been cut in half (dimensions 9.5″ x 5″), turning it on its  side to create this hanging.  The focal image is available from Trishia’s wonderful French Kissed Postcards  Zibbet store, which I transferred onto fabric. Not only do I love this image because it is pink (!) it has such a delicate look to it, I just find it to be so beautiful.
The floral bouquet was stamped randomly onto the base and then I set to work layering papers, image and stamped elements, tucking a Paris cancellation mark under the cluster of fabric flowers.  Stamping onto ribbon has become a firm favourite of mine and it can be seen here on the ribbon I wrapped around the base and tied into a single loop bow.  The holes were already created so all I needed to do was thread through some ribbon to create a double handle. Pearl trim adorns the bottom of the base.
So, did you guess the item that I had up-cycled? It is in fact a photo album! I cut it down the spine. One of the bolts/screw was missing but the cover was too pretty to throw out, as you can see in the photograph part of it is actually fabric. I still have the front cover to alter at a later stage. Oh how it pays to have a tidy up!!  
It would be fun to know if you have unearthed anything recently that you had forgotten about. Lynne x

All The Promises They Made

For their June Challenge  Crafty Individuals June  set the challenge of Vintage with a heart. On setting out I had in mind to make the piece predominately stamping, keeping embellishments to a minimum and see how many CI stamps I could incorporate to create a story of love.
Here is my list of stamps used:-
One of the females from – CI-065
Linked hearts – stamp off-cut from CI
Letter – CI-214
Paris cancellation mark – CI-122
Cherish & Hope -CI-256
By Air Mail – CI-239
Postcard, carte postale and P.C. Paris – CI-307
This heart shaped hanging tells the story of a woman waiting at home for the return of her love who is at war. Surrounding her are symbols of their correspondence and love.  She sits writing another letter looking wistfully into the distance imagining his safe return to her. As he departed for  war promises are made, they will write letters each day which are represented by the letter, cancellation mark and other postal related images. We have the linked hearts symbolising their love for each other and the words cherish and hope, hope being what she has for his safe return, she has promised she will wait for him. 

I wanted a heart shaped base so hand-cut a heart from chipboard then adhered K&co paper. The paper was pretty but I wanted it aged so I  stamped postmarks, etc  randomly.  The linked hearts were stamped twice, once onto the heart and then onto K%co scrap, cutting out one of the hearts so I could layer it.The first, full image is a truer representation of the colour, the light started to change when photographing the detail.I edged the female image with lace, the lace represents the lace edging on the handkerchief which she hands to him as he departs.
A favourite of mine, stamping onto ribbon to tie it in with the theme of the artwork. Here I stamped, “carte postale”.
With other obligations, sometimes I don’t always have the opportunity to spend time on a completely stamped piece such as this,  just stamps and ink. As I really enjoy working with photo real stamps and digital images I did wonder if I would return to completely stamped projects but I have since realised that they all have a place in my crafting life and sometimes it is good to take a wee break from one as when you return to that style you enjoy it all the more.
It would be interesting to know, what type of project do you find the most happiness and contentment when working on or are you like me, that you like the variety of mixing up what you work with. It is always fun to know what makes other crafters tick. Lynne x

Let’s Dip Our Toes In The Water

As the rain pours down I sit here drafting a post with a piece of artwork that depicts a vintage bathing belle at the beach, not the most inspiring of weather although water is the common denominator.
One of Divas D’Este’s most recent collage sheets is the stunning Vintage Bathing Beauties. As I have spoken before about my love for vintage bathing belles it will come as no surprise that I was keen to work with this CS. This sheet comprises 10 images, excellent value for money.
As I had recently worked with the format of the flipped over canvas with a bathing belle theme to it (“By The Seashore She Would While Away The Day“) for this artwork I wanted to go with a different colour scheme, although pink still had to make an appearance!  Cheap and cheerful paint was applied to the canvas, a beautiful metallic green. Believe it or not, this paint only cost £1 for a bottle from the local supermarket. It is a pity they only stock a limited colour palette as they are fabulous paints. This colour was the ideal colour to team up with the Bo Bunny paper and it also picks up the colours in the Bathing Beauty image.
A little tip, if you are cutting out images  sometimes it makes the world of difference if you adhere them to cardboard before cutting out and then inking the edges (sometimes I will substitute charcoal). It makes the image pop and gives stability. I also used silicone glue to create more dimension but before doing that I dipped the image into mica flakes. You will see that I stamped “By The Sea”  along the length of ribbon.
Although I’d added gauze and beads I really wanted to use this trim which I painted and stamped with “carte postale” before adding Basic Grey stickers. Finally, these stickers get used as they have been lurking in my stash from the days when my intention was to scrapbook.
I may well be able to guarantee that you will be seeing her bathing belle friends over the coming weeks, what I cannot guarantee however is the weather to match. Lynne x

Special Delivery

Last week I found out I had won Marilou’s Giveaway at her Blog  Lulu’s Lovelies. To say I was delighted was a bit of an understatement. As quickly as yesterday the Postman handed a large package to me and once I ripped it open (as that is how keen I was to get inside it!) there was a package wrapped in yellow tissue and ribbon which then revealed the Journal.
Is that not breathtaking? Inside is a journal with kraft paper pages. I have to tell you that it is even more beautiful in real life, if you can believe that. There is such texture, from tulle, scrim and lace. I love the way she has framed the image with the scrim. In corresponding with Marilou I mentioned I had never kept an Art Journal and she said that this could be the time to start one l but I cannot see that I would want to spoil this Journal in such a way so in the meantime it will be kept as a form of decoration until I build up the courage to write in it.
The link to Marilou’s Blog is above and you will discover that she also has as an Etsy store.
Another person I want to thank is Arline. The other week a large box was delivered to me, the Postman must wonder why I receive all these packages! As I delved into the box I came across an altered clipboard
She knows me well with the French influence! The heart shaped cluster with flowers is such a beautiful touch. Arline also sent a small altered notebook
and I must show you Arline’s speciality, handmade flowers. This woman creates flowers the like of which I have never seen before using crepe paper and fabric, these are very special
Above is a link to Arline’s Blog where you will see her artwork and details of her stores.
Any time I receive gifts or Giveaways I am always staggered by the depth of talent that is out there. The craft/art community is exceptional in the way it puts so much time and love into creating artwork and then giving them away either randomly such as part of a Giveaway or specifically such as gifts. What is just as special, is being part of this community. Lynne x

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