Friday, 20 July 2018

African Adventures

Good morning friends.
I've been overseas for the last few weeks and now I'm back I've been getting unpacked and sorted out the last few days.
It was a crazy hectic emotional and special time away catching up with friends and family, sightseeing and saying final goodbyes to my parents.
Today I thought I'd give a very limited snapshot of my time away and have restricted myself to share just 1 photo of each of the things I did and places I visited.
Considering that I have over a thousand photos that is hard lol. I will pop back over the course of time to share some of the more creative things in more detail but in the meantime I hope you enjoy my snapshot of 21 days in South Africa........


Rietvlei Nature Reserve.

 Shopping at Chameleon Village

 Stocking up on childhood sweets......

 Going up the cableway at Hartebeestpoort

 Having coffee and cake at French Toast.

 Surrounded by a forest of wire baobab trees (Yes, I did buy one!)

 Irene mall has this very weird sculpture.....
 Doing a book making class....

 Driving down to Cape Town over two days - this is such an iconic view along the way.

 We laid the ashes of my parents to rest in the beauty of Kirstenbosch Gardens in Capetown.

 The very cool Truth Coffee in Capetown (you will be seeing more about this experience!
The V&A waterfront.

 Exploring Stellenbosch.

Making my choices for wine tasting at Blaauwklippen. 

 Another wine farm......Altyd Gedacht

 Blouberstrand and Table Mountain

 Travelling back from Capetown - This is Matjiesfontein.

Three sisters area on the way home

So, a very limited view of my busy life lol. Hope you enjoyed it.
I will be sharing more about a few experiences in further posts so I'll see you soon, in the meantime my studio is calling- lots of crafty goodies came home with me that need to be sorted....
Have a lovely day

Monday, 2 July 2018

Recycling - for Mixed Up Magazine

Good morning everyone.
Hopefully I have scheduled this correctly as I am  potentially currently out of computerland.....

So, over at Mixed Up Magazine, the new theme for the blog is recycling. Giving something a new lease of life is something that I enjoy doing. My wife and I spend more time scouring Junk/antique/charity shops and boot fairs, looking for things that can be re-purposed or given a lick of paint etc to refresh them, than we do going to high street stores.

This month I have kept things pretty simple and  given a bit of a refresh to something that was pennies in a charity shop.


 I'm a sucker for things like this, I love opening things and discovering that it's not just an empty box.

 First, a coat of paint inside,
 Outside got a coat of Gesso, then a coat of paint too.
 A spritz of water to make everything run and a blast with the Heat Gun to dry gave me a faded distressed look.
 To finish off the outside I added some random heat embossing using Stampendous Faded Taupe Embossing Enamel and some Treasure Copper wax to highlight the edges. Now it looks very different to the original.
 Inside has some copper too and some sentiments from Tim Holtz and job done. A nice simple transformation.
I've added four reels of self adhesive lace and fabric tape to the drawers. I can just reel off what I need without opening the drawers which is great.
Don't forget to pop on over to the blog to see everyone's amazing makes too. 

Monday, 25 June 2018

Ocean calling....

Good morning friends.
My turn on the Mark Gould DT this week sees me heading sea side.....
I decided to add some interest to a plain white craft apron that I have had knocking about for a while now, just waiting for inspiration. Which arrived in the form of Mark's Sailor Jim

This was a fun project to do and I took things very casually.
To start I used Infusions to add some colours blends and dried it off.

The focal image was stamped onto the fabric and onto white card (cut out to create a mask)


With the paper mask in place the background was filled in with a random assortment of my stamps from The Artistic Stamper..

Painting on fabric has it's own challenges so I just decided I was not going to get too hung up on staying in the lines.  I used DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylics to paint with. Sailor Jim is the focal point of course so I spent  more time  painting him

Then just some simple highlighting and fun to tie the background together.

I added the sentiment using a Sharpie


I hope you like it. I had a good time making it. Sailor Jim is available HERE




Wednesday, 20 June 2018

By the seaside... new stamps

Good afternoon folks.
I'm running around like a headless chicken at the moment getting ready for my trip to South Africa soon. There is of course, a thousand things that I thought I had plenty of time to sort but time seems to fly past.
Anyway, today I thought I would pop on over to share my new stamps with you. Released on June 8th they are available from The Artistic Stamper.
This release is almost all about the seaside.
The image on this is actually upside down lol but hey, I confuse easily.

 This one is not strictly seaside though it has a lovely wave feel to it.
 These next two sets are very cool, there are two stamps, a positive and a negative so you can use them separately or together.

 Though I haven't had much chance to play with them yet I did manage to get a couple inked up....

I worked with my matching Masks for this little page. I do love the almost print effect of the stamp, almost like a screen print. I stamped the colour first then the outline though I will say that it is easier to line up better if you stamp the outline first.



Hope you like them. If you are interested they can be found HERE
Take care and have fun.

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Journal making retreat

Good afternoon friends.
This last weekend I was privileged to teach a three day small up close and personal journal making retreat. Hosted by the lovely Jennie of The Artistic Stamper.
For me, it was a lovely way to kick off my post redundancy life.
It was a lovely weekend filled with laughter and plenty of lovely food too.
Over the course of the weekend we created "Tales of Earth and Sea",  a double journal with both a traditional stitch bound book and a spine on bound book using my Tangled Layer book cover kit.


Some of the finished "sea" side covers. Gorgeous layers of pastes, textures and crackle and some moulded embellishments.

Every book had gorgeous shimmer and shine Thanks to DecoArt's Dazzling Metallics paint and Metallic Lustres.


The "Earth" side of the journals were a patchwork of shapes and textures too.



The finished journals were gorgeous.  Earth has a sewn text block of 200gsm card and Sea has a combination of vintage sea charts and watercolour card which was great fun to put together.


The second journal we created was a brand new kit called Inside Story. This is one of two new journals created. These are no sewing required journal kits. We added some awesome texture to the covers. All the fun is to be found inside.....

 Inside, there's a cool compartment hiding something ...

 Four sweet mini books nestle inside to be filled with little stories.


 I love all the decorated spines too.

It was a lovely weekend, a real treat to be able to immerse ourselves in creativity and not have to think about anything else.
Hope you like.
I'll be back tomorrow with details of my new kits and new stamps too. Until then, hope you have a lovely day.