Sunday 29 January 2012

A Poinsettia’s For Life Not Just for Christmas!

Today’s tutorial is on making paper flowers but it’s also about using your dies all year round as well. So, I’m making a paper flower using my spellbinders poinsettia die set, but the finished result can be used on any paper project not just a Christmas one.

These paper flowers come out particularly well if you follow the 3 D’s - Distinction, Dimension & Depth.

Firstly Distinction - well, I took a little alliterative liberty here, as I’m really talking about contrast.  Before I began, I backed an A4 sheet of rich Antique Gold Stardream paper with an offcut of Chiyogami patterned paper and a co-ordinating plain blue.  I find a glue stick is best for this task as it is not too wet but does provide edge-to-edge adhesive, just leave to dry for a couple of hours. Alternatively, use double-sided paper. I then cut the poinsettia bracts in alternating colours, patterned and plain, but making sure I finished on a patterned piece for the top (and I cut 2 of these).  If you don’t have a flower die, then pre-cut flowers such as Petaloo, can also be layered up in this way.

On the plain bracts, I sponged through the die with Brushed Corduroy distress ink using a small piece of Cut & Dry.  My final task to help me achieve Distinction, was to ink the edges of all the die-cut pieces.

Step2 creates Dimension.  Using a bone-tool (or the blunt edge of closed scissors), I shaped and curled the petals.  You can see from the photos how this has started to give the flower layers real “life”.

Next, I layered up the flower – to provide the final D – Depth.  Using a small dot of a wet glue or glue gel, layer the flower bracts on top of each other, offsetting the petals of each layer. 

You may find you need to press the middle of the layers together until the glue “takes”. 

Finally, finish off the centre of your flower with a button, brad, or, in this case, small flat-backed crystals. 

And here you can see that all the effort that you put into achieving the 3Ds results in a lovely 3D embellishment, so much better than the flat version to the left.
Hope you enjoy.

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Sunday 22 January 2012

The Lady In Red

Today I have an unusual colour combination to share: reds, browns, pinks and mauves.  This was inspired by the beautiful Deja View Papers I’ve used.  The elegant lady stamp is by Kanban and as you will see from my cards over time, I do love fashion-based stamps.  This is the first time I've used this stamp.

I coloured the image with Promarkers and glittered the fur collar and cuffs using a gluepen and clear crystal glitter.

The edge of the accent panel is made with a Martha Stewart edging punch.  The crystal swirls are by Zva.  Tucked behind the mulberry flowers are a pair of Hatpins (perhaps you’d like to take a look at my hatpin tutorial)?

In the top right hand corner, the cute butterfly charm is an Ebay find.

Thank you for visiting - please do leave a comment, I'd love to hear from you!

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Creating Hatpins - A Tutorial

Be warned - this tutorial comes with a health warning – making hatpins is a seriously addictive habit!  This is a beginner tutorial, but once you’ve got started, there are hundreds of beautiful beads and charms – you need never make the same hatpin twice.

To start, gather your materials – I’m using pearl teardrop 2.5” pins, a selection of 6mm & 4mm glass pearl beads and some 4mm glass bicone beads.  I will also need some clear glue (or dries clear glue), a toothpick, an eggcup, a small piece of waxed paper and a non-stick worksheet.
Before you start gluing, it can be useful to thread up your hatpins with your chosen beads to make sure you are happy with what the end result will look like.  Use a variety of bead colours and types. 
Start by squeezing a small amount of glue onto the wax paper (I use old glue dot carrier paper).  Using a toothpick, pick up a tiny amount of glue and dab it onto the bottom of the pearl-head on the pin.

Thread on your first bead and push up into the glue.  If you’ve applied too much glue, just wipe away any excess with your thumb nail. Carry on repeating this process with each of the beads. 

When you have finished, rest your hat pins upside down to dry in an eggcup.  If there is any chance that someone could accidently prick themselves with the drying pins, make sure you put silicon earring stoppers on the sharp ends.
After 30mins your pins will be dry and ready to use. Sit back and admire your lovely hatpins! When adding your hatpins onto a project, if the sharp end of the pin is exposed, use silicon earring stoppers on the points or a small, crystal bead glued in place.

To see these hat pins in situ, take a peek at my 'Glorious Dress Card' post.

For more advanced (but still not difficult) Hat Pins, take a peek at my tutorial Decorative Hat Pins - Next Steps and don't forget to watch my 
video demonstration on Creating Hatpins on my Youtube channel here. 

I do hope that this was useful, and I’d love to read your comments.
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