Friday, June 27, 2008

TMTA and Inch by Inch

This is a super quick, middle of the night post, for two challenges that are closing soon.

For the first time, I've been organised enough to get something in for Inchbyinch, where the weekly challenge is Black and White

I would like to note that it was a very hard palette for me to use - I had to drag my hand away from the gold paint. Also, I may be unintentionally breaking the rules by using sepia images. *frets*

Secondly, TMTA's theme is Tickets. I've tucked a ticket under this little girl's arm.

And that's it for me - it's far too late to be up and blogging.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Stamphappy 1-4-1 Swapping

The 1-4-1 ATC swap on Stamphappy is loads of fun - this week I received a gorgeous card from Val West, with bright colours on gloss cardstock.

It came in the most adorable little folder, which is just the nicest touch to a surprise gift.

I had made some ATCs to send, but Val's little folder made me feel sad about slipping my own cards into an envelope with nothing but a clear plastic slip. So I painted and stamped some library pockets for them.

Last weekend I had a blitz of crafting activity that may or may not have anything to do with the hard drive failure of my laptop. *is shamefaced* There's an amazing amount of time to fill when you don't have that neat little machine sitting right in front of you.

The backgrounds are newspaper, painted and re-painted to get lots of layers and depths and texture.

The stamp for the background is by Stampers Anonymous, one of those big stamps you can't live without for a nice, baroque look.

I've got a bit of a thing going on with flowers right now. And butterflies, which is a natural progression of thought, I suppose. And the moon. And I've never really let go of that fascination with the moon.

I really like doing this messy, wobbly edging with gold paint - it doesn't require great accuracy, and it reminds me of the aged edging you get on some vintage postcards.

Actually, there's quite a lot of ATCs here - it was an extremely satisfying day of work.

Two of these are returns for RAKs sent, and the others are all going out as RAKs for the 1-4-1 swappers. I haven't sent RAKs for a couple of years. It's fun!

This one doesn't really have a spot between her eyebrows. I think it's time to clean the scanner glass. Again.

One of these cards is not like the others... I had this one partially assembled for a long time, and riding the wave of creative energy, I finished it off. He's made from scraps from a zetti swap that I couldn't bear to throw away. Zetti scraps - I suppose you could call that zetti-confetti.

Friday, June 13, 2008

What I got up to last weekend

And it's taken me so long to post this that it's nearly the weekend again!

First of all, I dyed some painted silk for my Quilty Conscience exchange. I wanted a kind of pale blue, and the label on the packet said "Madonna Blue" which I took to mean a pretty sky-blue. The colour swatch seemed to confirm this.

Really, it was more like indigo. Who knew? The silk looks great, but my paint resist looks very scrappy against such a dark background. I'll have to hunt around for something different.

It wasn't an unmitigated failure, though - I gathered up some tags to dye since I had a pot of dye on the stove, and they came out very nicely. Some are plain, some are stamped with white paint, using one of my hand-carved bird stamps.

And I threw in some muslin scraps, I think they'll be handy, and will look lovely over gold.
Lovely blue muslin!

And the best thing about dying tags is that in the bottom of the pot, when you tip the dye out, you find a whole lot of those circular hole-protectors that have drifted off the tags in the liquid. They're great for stamping on and attaching to other tags.

I made one of these pin-cushion rings out of the tab you pull from a carton of long life milk. Our tabs don't look like the one in the link, but they worked perfectly well.

More precious than a diamond ring, to kitties!

I made it, and I admired it, and I left it on the table. In the morning, it was gone. And while I was photographing the replacement that I made last night, a little brown snout crept into frame. I shall be keeping this pin-cushion locked away.

Here is Stephanie modelling the ring. I think it will be very handy - I'm always putting my needle down, or tucking it into my shirt when I'm not using it then forgetting where I put it.

She's a hand model!

I made some fairy inchies for Inch By Inch, but not in time to make last week's theme. (Sorry for being so hopelessly disorganised, Fiona!) Serendipitously, I had to make a card for a friend who has come out of hospital, so they were put to good use anyway.

The first mailing group I joined once I had discovered papercrafts was Stamphappy, and I'm very fond of it - I've learned so much, and met so many wonderful people from the list. They've started up a one-for-one ATC swap, and I've received my first one, from Linda Aldred. It came in a beautiful hand-made envelope, and was posted in a tiny library pocket, that was the most adorable thing in the mailbox yesterday. The picture doesn't do it credit - foil card looks lovely in person, but is tricky to photograph. Thank you, Linda! It's lovely, and the mesh window is a really clever way to frame an image. I'll be filing that idea away! And I'll be putting something in the mail for you as soon as we're back from Melbourne.

This weekend is going to be much quieter - we'll be in Melbourne while Stephanie does some work-related education. We'll be far away from the craft table, but hopefully we can do some shopping while we're there. And it's sunny this time, too!

One last photo of my catburglar in action, with sports-style notation, because he moves so fast you can barely see him:
The claaaaaw! The claaaaaaaw!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

TMTA and my weekend

This weekend was beautiful - there was lots of sun, and we got out in the garden for a bit of winter pruning. The mornings have been icy cold - an indication that it's going to be quite a chilly winter. Here's Chewbacca, soaking up some of the last winter sun we'll probably see for a while.

This week's TMTA theme is Towers and Columns. I think this Collections stamp was one of the first that I ever bought, and it's very useful. (Like most Collections stamps are, I suppose.)

I'm trying to learn to love my colour laser printer, but I don't think we've achieved true harmony yet. I'm printing on the most excellent lightweight brown paper that is used as filler in the delivery boxes at work - we have scads and scads of the stuff, and it takes paint and ink beautifully. The laser toner is apparently a little fragile, though, because it started flaking off my Grecian woman straight away. I've sprayed the rest of my attempts with fixative now, in the hope that they'll be a little more sturdy. They look quite nice though - the brown paper really emphasises the warm tones:

What else did I get up to this weekend? I played with our new Dremel! Nina's workshop made us brave - we drilled glass and dominoes and wooden discs, and I planned out a necklace based on the nursery rhyme The Little Nut Tree:

I had a little nut tree
And nothing would it bear,
But a silver nutmeg,
And a golden pear.

I chose this theme mostly because I saw the nutmegs in the supermarket, and thought they'd be easy to drill through. But the nutmegs look good, all covered in silver leaf and varnished.

Although, en masse, they do look a bit like shiny possum poo.

And I've been embellishing my box with the pieces taken from my burned chiffon sandwich:

Now that I look back on it, it was very busy.