Monday 14 December 2020

Small Lantern Winter Scene

      A few weeks ago I made a Winter scene using the Large Lantern die set by John Next Door, this time I've made one using the Small Lantern. The standard Small Lantern is about 3.5inches tall when assembled, making it perfect for hanging on the Christmas tree.

     This lantern is a little taller than 3.5" because it's been modified to hold an LED tea light in the base.
     I cut the main body in snowfall acetate and cut the bottom off. Then I cut two pieces in white card, both have the base but one has a slightly taller side than the other.
     Both base sections have a small hole cut in them, one for the candle flame to poke through and one for access to the switch on the candle.
     The acetate was stuck on the inside of the taller base section, then the lantern was assembled. You must use something like redline tape for this, it's the only thing strong enough to hold the construction together.
     The slightly shallower base has the candle stuck inside with the flame poking out, this section will be pushed down into the lantern once decorated.
     The little houses are a Sizzix die by Tim Holtz called Paper Houses, I used the smallest one and cut it down in height to suit.
     I made sure there were plenty of windows in these tiny houses for the light to shine out. The windows then had small pieces of vellum stuck on the inside to mute the glow and make sure you can't see he flame. There is also a small gap cut between the two adjoining houses for the light to pass through
     The rooves are not covered with snow for two is I didn't want to mess it up and the second is their insulation is terrible so it's all melted!
     The houses and a tree were stuck onto the base, making sure the flame was inside the buildings, then it was covered with a thin layer of True Snow paste. 
     Once all this was dry and set hard I lowered the base into the lantern, this was sticky as it was a tight fit. I also had to make sure that I got the switch in the right place, over the hole in the bottom of the lantern.
     To finish off I threaded a thin red ribbon through the holes in the top and drew it all together, I left this ribbon long so it can be used to hang the lantern. A few die cut Aster leaves and some tiny pinecones finished off the top and a wide strip of patterned paper around the base completed the project.

I would like to enter this project in the following challenges:
Die Cut Divas - Anything Goes
Allsorts - Christmas
Creative Knockouts - Anything Goes
Krafty Chicks - #537 Christmas
Merry Little Christmas - Anything Christmas     Top Pick

Friday 11 December 2020

Pick Up A Pine Tree

     Sadly this will be the last challenge at Not Just Cards, it has been running since 2014 but now it's time to hang up the scissors, thank you Helen for the last 6 years. 
     Making Christmas projects is one of my favourite things to do at any time of year, especially when I can make something tailored to the recipient. I have one friend that owns a few WWII American military vehicles and another that owns a haulage firm, so this was a perfect way to make something for them.
     I started with the Sizzix Bigz die by Tim Holtz called Old Jalopy and an A5 piece of card folded in half. Either side of the centre fold I added another fold to make a pleat, this was in one of Tim's many demo's, I'm sorry to say I don't know which one.
     When I put the card on the die I made sure that the pleat was just above the cutting edge at the bottom of the wheels, it didn't matter having a flat at this stage as tires would be added later.

     I also cut six wing pieces, two in red to match the car and four in black. I stuck two black together and then a red one on top to make them stand out, trying to get foam tape this thin would have been a nightmare!
     The hub caps and bumpers were also cut in black card, then they were coloured with silver guilding wax but not with a perfect cover as they are vintage vehicles and need to show wear and tear.....vintage will hide any tiny mishaps too.

     The lower part of the car was cut in black card, this forms the tires and shading under the wings, it was trimmed down to fit below the wings and running board. I cut the back of the car off to make it into a pick up.
      These vehicles are double sided so both sides have been decorated, when gluing the various bits on to the car remember that they will be the other way around on the back.
      The trees are also a TH die, cut in light green card, stuck onto a darker green card and then fussy cut. Again these are double sided so the tree outline on the back had to be stuck on back to front.

     With all the car parts stuck on and the tree loaded in to the back of the pick up it was time to stick both sides together but only at the top. I ran a small line of glue along the bonnet, across the cab and then along the top of the buck.
     If you stick the whole card together it will not stand up, having the ability to open at the bottom helps the pleat become the stand for the pick up.
     To make the military truck I used a suitable green card for almost everything except the tires and added a small white star to the door. Both the red and the military trucks have been aged with a dusting of black Distress Ink.
     For the blue truck I used blue card and silver satin mirri card for the wings, hub caps and bumpers, the Chris Riches fleet are always spotless with gleaming chrome accessories and at night they light up like a Christmas tree. The logo on the door was taken from a photo as my drawing skills were not up to copying it accurately.
     There is little space to write anything as they are not really a card, so I will be adding a small tag to the tree with my Christmas message. I hope that these will come out again next year as a simple decoration, I have kept several stand up items, both commercial and handcrafted, over the years because they have been too nice to throw out.

I would like to enter this project in the following challenges:
Christmas Cards All Year 'Round - Not A Card    Top Pick
Winter Wonderland - Anything Christmas
Merry Little Christmas - Anything Christmas
613 Avenue Create - Anything Goes/optional Vintage
Ike's World - #139 X is for Christmas
Dream Valley - Christmas
Use Your Stuff - Winter/Snow/Christmas
The Paper Funday - Anything Goes/option Christmas

Wednesday 9 December 2020

Winter Blues

     The theme this month at Christmas Craft Creations is Winter Blues. I know this has a touch of purple but they go so well together. 
     This idea came from a friend of a friend, it's so simple but looks like you've spent hours making it. The best thing is there is a video tutorial to follow which you can find here.
     For this card I used Ultramarine Brusho on the embossing folder, silver guilding wax and some die cut snowflakes. It's not the same as Mary Ellen's but that's the beauty of this technique, it's not going to be the same even if I use the same items.
     After polishing the crackle I added the snowflake and some blue dewdrops type gems from deep in my stash. I decided to mat and layer on purple to bring out the odd bits of purple in the Brusho.
     Just having Winter on it means it's a good card for anyone not celebrating Christmas and being snowflakes, my favourite seasonal thing, it's not religious either. Our challenge doesn't have to be a card, anything you have made that fits the Winter Blues theme is fine with us.

I would like to enter this card in the following challenges:
ABC Christmas - Y-Your Favourite Things - Snowflakes
The 12 Months of Christmas - #72 Anything Christmas
CraftyHazelnut's Christmas - Anything Christmas
Bastel-Traum - Winter

Saturday 5 December 2020

Opera Post Box

     I saw a new die advertised to make a post box, 'that's nice' I thought, then the penny dropped with a resounding clang! Why not make one with the JNDD001 Opera box die set?! Lockdown has been good for making me look more closely at what I already have and adapt it to suit. 
    The main body of the die and the lid were cut in red card, then I cut another lid in black card for the base. Using the lid for the base meant a nice easy fit over the main body, it also means you can make it slightly taller if you need to.
     There is a video tutorial on the assembly of the opera box on John's YouTube channel, here's a link to it. These tutorials are great but don't be afraid to tweak it to your needs, cut one in basic card and play around until you have what you need, then cut your good card and build.

     I cut several pieces of mini ivy from dark green card and coloured the edges with white ink. There is one spray visible at the front and another climbing up the back of the box.
     Rather than cut a slot in the box I have stuck a small piece of black card where the slot should be, with a small silver square above it that usually holds the time of the next collection. The larger panel on the front is the ideal place to hold a greeting, I kept this one very simple. 
     The top has a thin layer of True Snow paste sprinkled with a little clear glitter, once dry I added a robin cake decoration poked through a small hole and held in place with hot glue on the inside. The finished height of this one is 5.5 inches, without the robin.

I would like to enter this project in the following challenges:
CraftyHazelnut's Christmas - Anything Christmas
Crimbo Crackers - Anything Christmas
Merry Little Christmas - Anything Christmas
Allsorts - Anything BUT A Card
Dies R Us - Christmas

Wednesday 2 December 2020

Winter Forest Shutter

     Another shutter card made with John Next Door's new die set, this time for Christmas. There is a video tutorial for the basic assembly on John's You Tube channel here.
     Using the large rectangle die I cut my frame in white card stock and then embossed it with a snowflake pattern. The card used was not a heavy weight so I added a layer of gold mirri to give added strength and a nice gold border around the outside.
     The outer edge was trimmed after I had made the back panel so that they would both be the same size.

     The shutters were die cut with snowflakes and had more snowflakes added to give them a little interest. The placing of the shutters is important, if you watch the tutorial John explains that it is best to glue the two end shutters first and then fill in with the remaining shutters so it all comes out even.
     I actually centre marked the back of the frame and the middle shutter to make sure I got it right, I did use a strong PVA so I had a little wiggle room. All pencil marks wee rubbed out before the frame was added to the back, I don't think they would have been easy to see but I knew they were there.
     I used the centre panel cut from the frame to make my backing image. Using the tree die as a stencil I inked a scene, with a torn piece of paper at the bottom for the rolling hills, having the die the opposite way round to the cut so they would appear different to the cut ones.

     After cutting a couple of deer in black card and gluing them down I added a layer of die cut white trees to increase the forest. The stag was cut in black card and then placed further down so he looked closer.
     I did try to place the animals so they would be visible when the shutters were open but I think it could have been better.
     The only thing that was left was to add the image panel to a piece of white card a little larger than the outside of the frame, trim the frame to the same size and then carefully stick the two pieces together by the shutter tabs.

Materials List   (available from your local craft shop)
JND198 - Shutter Card die set
JND141 - Woodland Trees die
JNDCC021 - Deer Scenes die set
S57262 - 3D PVA Glue from Stix2

I would like to enter this card in the following challenges:
Dies R Us - #158 Christmas
Do-All Kreatives - #48 Winter Wonderland
Cardz 4 Guyz - Traditional Christmas
Ike's World - #139 X is for Christmas
CraftyHazelnut's Christmas - #518 Anything Christmas

Wednesday 18 November 2020

Shutter Card Fairy

     This was made using the new Shutter Card die set from John Next Door, it's not as complicated as it looks....honest. John has made a video on how to put this card together, which you can find here.
     The background was something I already had sitting in my 'to finish' pile, it's a stack of part made experiments. The coloured area was made using Distress Oxides and a 'Splatter' stamp from Inkylicious, the stamped seed heads and fairy are all Lavinia Stamps.
     To add extra effect I used the new Poppy Heads die set, adding DS adhesive sheet to black card then cutting two seed heads and adding them to the stamped ones.
     The image panel was mounted on black and then on to white card, this was trimmed to fit once the front panel was cut so that they would be equal once assembled.
     Using a sheet of patterned card and two square dies I cut the front aperture. To make anything other than the rectangle that comes in the set the only thing to remember is the height of the shutters, as long as they are able to open through the aperture it can be any width you choose. The shutters are added individually so you can put in as many as you like, I chose two for this card.
     The shutters have a stencilled pattern in pink on the back to look pretty when open. I've also cut a couple more seed heads to go on the outside and a tiny butterfly. The banners are in the main die set, as are the words, these are cut in silver mirri and then a black top one with the words cut in. To finish I added a couple of die cut corner decorations, also a JND die.

Materials List   (available from your local craft shop)
JND198 - Shutter Card die set
JND177 - Poppy Heads die set
S57262 - 3D PVA Glue from Stix2
Lavinia Stamps - various seed heads & tiny fairy
Inkylicious - Splatter Circle XL  

I would like to enter this card in the following challenges:
Crafty Sentiments - Anything Goes
Inkspirational - Frame It
Creative Fingers - Anything Goes
A Bit More Time To Craft - Anything Goes

Wednesday 11 November 2020

Lolly Stick Sledge

      With just a few weeks to Christmas my thought are moving from cards to decorations and with limited access to new stash I have been taking a much closer look at what I already have. This is my project for Not Just Cards, a challenge where cards are welcome along with any other hand crafted project.
     I have some wooden lolly sticks in a pot on my desk and after a quick look at Pinterest this is what I decided to do with some of them. I didn't think to colour the sticks before I stuck them together, so had to do it carefully after the glue had set, this left me with a rustic look. With the addition of a short length of string my sledge was complete. I set this aside while I started on my MDF tag.
     The tag was painted with white acrylic, then dry brushed with some blue paint, making sure to work in one direction only.

     Once the paint was dry I added some True Snow paste with a palette knife to add a little texture, while still wet I sprinkled some white bio-degradable glitter on it for a dash of sparkle.
     The sledge was stuck on with 3D PVA, it's a great strong glue that dries clear and seems to stick almost everything porous. I found some very small polystyrene balls in my stash so I stuck some next to the sledge.
     The words were die cut using some Tim Holt dies and stuck on with the 3D PVA. To finish off the rather messy back of the tag I stuck on a piece of patterned paper, then sanded the edges off once dry. With the addition of some ribbon and a twine loop to hang by the MDF tag was complete.

Materials List   (available from your local craft shop)
S57447 - MDF Tag set of 3
S57433 - Bio-degradable Glitter - White
S57262 - 3D PVA Glue from Stix2

I would like to enter this project in the following challenges:
Fezziwigs Festive Frolics - Anything BUT A Card
The Holly & Ivy - Anything Christmas Goes
Crimbo Crackers - Anything Christmas Goes
Dragonfly Dreams - Christmas/Winter
Craft Rocket - Christmas/Winter

Gingerbread Village Light Box

     The theme this month at Christmas Craft Creations is Anything BUT A Card. I love making decorations and with the arrival of the new Paper Village die set by Tim Holtz and an idea I saw on FB, this is what I've come up with.
     Believe it or not this whole box and the church was cut from one A4 sheet of brown card, it took a little bit of planning but it means everything matches.
     I used one of the skinny houses to make the tower on the church, if you lay the house die on top of the tiny house cut out you can work out the pitch of the roof so it will fit.
     To make it look like a gingerbread village I used a white gel pen to add decoration all over, though the doors were coloured with a white Sharpie to get better coverage.

     A church should have stained glass windows so I used some patterned vellum stuck on the inside of each opening, it was stuck on the wrong way around so the strong colour is on the inside. I cut a hole in the roof so the light could shine through into the tower.
     To get the roof tiles even I used the deckle edge of a piece of card like a ruler. It was all stuck together with a good strong PVA glue which gave me a little wiggle room to get my edges right.

     The base of the box was die cut with all the variations available in the die set for windows and doors, I tried to make every house different.
     I used some plain vellum for the windows in the village and decorated it all with the gel pen.
     At first the houses weren't going to have a porch roof but it didn't look quite right so they were all added later.

     The lid of the box had a white cover added to the brown so I only had to colour the edges with the gel pen. There was a hole cut in the lid so the light from the box would shine into the church.
     The church was glued onto the lid but it lacked something......snow!  Using some True Snow paste I added this and it looked so much better, it also hid any gaps around the base of the church that the light might shine through.
     I added a small tree to the scene and buried it in the snow because it had a tiny wooden base that needed to be hidden.

     I wanted a small car to add to the scene, where on earth was I going to find one small enough?...cake topper?...toy car?....Monopoly piece!  Not wanting to use the only Monopoly car I have I decided to make my own silicone mould so I could have a whole fleet of cars.
     Making a mould is quite easy, silicone glue, cornflour, a few drops of baby oil and a spritz of paint for colour. Push the car into the 'dough' and leave overnight to set. Remove the car and then use hot glue in the mould to make many more. The advantage of this is the glue card had a flat bottom, making it easy to stick in the snow. The car was coloured with a mix of Sharpie pens and acrylic paint.    

     It was important that the back look just as good as the front so the whole thing has been decorated all the way round to look the same. Even the rear windows of the church are stained glass.
     The light source is a colour changing LED tea light placed in the bottom of the box. I did try a string of tiny LED lights but all together they were too bright, I rather like the changing colours too.
     This Paper Village is so cute, it's going to be used over and over for years, you have been warned!

I would like to enter this project in the following challenges:
Fezziwigs Festive Frolics - Anything BUT A Card    Top pick
Creative Craft Cottage - Christmas/Winter
Country View Crafts - Anything BUT A Card
Dragonfly Dreams - Christmas/Winter
Jingle Belles - Include A see Through Element - windows
ABC Christmas - W - Winter Wonderland/ X - eXtra Special   Top 5

Saturday 7 November 2020

Gnomemade Christmas Tree

     This card was inspired by two friends, it was Jenny's idea to make a tree with these stamps and Val's amazing hand sewn gnome that really set the colour scheme, thank you ladies.
     I started by stamping each of the six gnomes on to Stix2 masking sheet and cutting them out. Then I stamped the centre gnome, masked him and stamped his two friends beside him.
     The piece of card I stamped on was quite large so I had plenty of room to play around with the images. I continued to stamp and mask until all six gnomes had been used and my tree shape was formed.
     I left the card for a while to make sure that all the ink was completely dry before I removed the masks, I knew it was likely that anything was still wet I would smudge it and have to start all over again.
     There were a few tiny gaps in the stamping where I hadn't got the mask exactly right, this was put right with a black micron pen.     
     To colour the image I used alcohol markers, with having spare card around the image I was able to try out the pens to make sure I was happy with the shade I'd chosen.
     I added a tiny bell to the top of each hat by sewing through the card. This did make matting and layering a little tricky because of the lumps, but it all worked out and meant my thread was all hidden.
     To add the greeting I die cut various phrases and chopped them about until I got 'gnomemas', I wanted something a bit different for this card.
     I shall have a play and make some variations using these cute little gnomes, as they can be any colour a gnome is not just for Christmas.

Materials List   (available from your local craft shop)
CTJJ143 - Gnomes by Two Jays
S57268 - Masking sheet
S57262 - 3D PVA Glue from Stix2

I would like to enter this card in the following challenges:
CraftyHazelnut's Christmas - Anything Christmas
Send a Smile For Kids - Happy Holidays/Anything Goes
Colour Crazy Craft - Anything Coloured
Craft Rocket - Christmas/Winter
Christmas Crafts All Year Round - Family and Friends
The 12 Months of Christmas - #71 For The Boys
Merry Little Christmas - Anything Christmas 

Wednesday 28 October 2020

Oundle In Bloom

     Believe it or not this was the first idea I had when I saw the Oundle die set, a nice big, bright tissue flower and it had to be yellow. I think it was the honeycomb style centre that did it.
     I spent a little while rummaging through my stash but eventually found a small stack of coloured tissue, luckily there was some yellow left. I used one sheet folded into twelve layers, which I die cut all at the same time.
     Using PVA I put a small drop of glue in the centre of each petal and rotated them as I stacked them. Once dry I gently pulled up each layer until they were all fluffed up, then I opened the out again until they looked like a multi layered flower.
     For the centre I cut the honeycomb type piece in black and cut it out with the small octagon shape. Using gold mirri I cut another small octagon and embossed it with the same honeycomb type die.
     The raised areas of the mirri sat happily in the holes of the black card making it easy to slot together and glue.
     I smothered the back of the octagon with PVA and nestled it in the centre of the flower, fluffing up the petals afterwards to make the flower tidy.

     For the background I used two shades of green, one die cut with the main body of the die set, the other as a flat backing.
     I wanted a tiny gold mat layer to offset the gold centre, not wanting to use a huge piece of gold that would be hidden I cut out the centre for use on another project.
     With the mats and layers done I added them to a Kraft card to keep it all looking natural. I put a mid size dollop of PVA on the back of the flower and popped it in the middle of the card, I had to hold it down for a short while as the tissue wanted to lift it back up.
     I needed a little something to add to the card but didn't want to use a greeting, I chose a gold butterfly in one corner to break the symmetry.

Materials List   (available from your local craft shop)
JND171 - Oundle die set
JNDAD008 - Small Butterflies
S57262 - 3D PVA Glue from Stix2

I would like to enter this card in the following challenges:
All Fun - #18 Anything Goes
Simon Says Stamp - Anything Goes

Friday 23 October 2020

Happy Psychedelic......

     Another new die from John Next Door, this one is called Haddon. There are two panels in the set so you can build your own repeating pattern, a good unisex die, just change your colour scheme to suit.
     For this one I chose to use black as my main cover colour, with a psychedelic background underneath.
     I cut the panel twice to make a black square, well almost square, I made it square by allowing a little more black each side of the pattern.
     The background is something I found in my stash, I have no idea where I got it. I'm sure there must be something out there similar, you could make one with alcohol inks.

     The centre panel was cut using one of the shapes from the Woodford set, then cut with one of John's word dies and a decorative die from stash.
     All die cuts were then backed with the same backing card, I chose the best bits for each cut to get maximum effect.
     The centre panel was then mounted on a gold mirri layer cut with another die from Woodford before going on foam in the centre of the card.
     The black panel is matted on gold mirri and then on to a white card blank, the rest of the greeting will go inside the card, it may be birthday, it may end up being something else, whatever suits the occasion.

Materials List   (available from your local craft shop)
JND173 - Haddon Panel die set
JND172 - Woodford die set die set
JND182 - Stencil Sentiments die set
S57262 - 3D PVA Glue from Stix2

I would like to enter this card in the following challenges:
Krafty Chicks - All Occasions 
Seize The Birthday - Birthday/ optional texture