Starting with Stamping?

If you want to start out with stamping it’s easy to get overwhelmed by everything there is. There are also lots of lists about the bare necessities when it comes to stamping. I’ll give you mine. But – decide for yourself if you want the brand stuff or want to try out with some cheaper stuff or things you allready own. Be creative! There are a few execptions though – ink, embossingpowder and chalk: cheap stuff shows and is not comparable to the “brand” stuff.

Basic needs:

  • stamps
  • ink
  • paper
  • (yes, it’s that simple.)

To be a bit more specific:

  • clear stamps + acryllic block that is large enough to fit the individual stamps. (also not too large!)
  • ink: depends on how and if you want to colour your stamped image. My preference is water soluble ink to colour with, waterproof ink to stamp with.
    • (Ranger distress ink is watercolour ink, Stazon is waterproof ink also suitable for glossy surfaces but not adviced for clearstamps. For clearstamps, versafine or maybe archival ink). (Ofcourse you could also stamp with the water soluble ink and colour with pencils.)
  • paper: try out different sorts of paper. There is special stamping paper but it’s more expensive. My advice for Dutch people: Get the correspondence cards from the HEMA and the unicolour karton. The cardboard is for the back of the card (although it’s a shame it’s not in white – that is my preference, but at least this is not expensive AND firm). Tip: Trim the correspondence cards before stamping to a slightly smaller size. This way, when you stick it to the folded bit of the card, there will be a margin around the correspondence card where the back card shows. It’s like framing the card.

So this is the bare basic list. But ofcourse there are lots of other nice things… I’ll show you my basic workdesk.

 

My workspace with a few basic items. First, you’ll need stamps. (Or do you? You could also make your own from potatoes, and use paint to stamp, or use other objects).

From left to right bottom row: clear stamp on acryllic block, foam (EZ-mount) mounted grey rubber stamp, foam mounted red rubber stamp, wood mounted red rubber stamp, pink rubber unmounted stamp, stampsheet, backside of an ez-mount mounted stamp.

These are clear stamps from HEMA. (A warehouse in the Netherlands). Clearstamps are easy for beginners as you can see where your stamp will be placed. The quality of clearstamp also ranges widely. Clearstamps generally are less detailed (less fine lines) then rubber stamps. In this package there is also an acryllic block included. The clear stamps will stick to that, and that is the way you stamp. The inkpads that are next to the stamps are cheap ones, I don’t use them anymore.

A side view of the foam mounted stamp. Foam mounted stamps save space and you can see the outline of the stamp. The colour of the rubber doesn’t indicate anything about the quality.

The EZ Mount foam is sold in sheets, you stick the rubber on it and cut it out (it is easiest with a special sharp and short scissors which are not visible in these pictures). Normal sciccors will do too but they cut less precise.

Next up is ink and the applicators.

Left is the distress ink – it comes in two sizes. The smaller ones are empty sooner (my big ones last LONG). Small is easy for travel and eh… well there’s fans of the small ones. They know more benefits. It’s just preference I guess, and I prefer the big ones. The distress ink isn’t so much ink to stamp with – it is more of a colouring medium to use for creating backgrounds or colouring images. For backgrounds, you need an applicator: You’ve got the ones with the handles and klitteband foam pads on them, but I prefer the make up wedges on the right. The triangular one is from the hema, and I prefer the rounded one which I haven’t found an equal of in The Netherlands. (Got mine from chocolate baroque in the UK.) The well known brand Ranger was about the first to come up with the applicators with handles but are a bit expensive. Now there are also cheaper tools that look the same.

Next is Versafine – it’s an oily ink and dries slower. Good for detailed stamping or usage with clearstamps. My experience with watercolouring over them is not great – the water does affect the ink. (Maybe doesn’t do that with other paper though). Because the ink dries slower it can be used for embossing powder as well (more on that later).

StazOn – stays on! It stamps on almost any surface. Does have a distinct smell and is not advised for clear stamps as the chemicals in the ink could damage the clear stamps in the long term. (Ofcourse I used Stazon on my clearstamp and haven’t noticed any deterioration of the stamps yet). (Oh ofcourse it will discolour the clear stamp! sometimes [often] even so much that you can’t see through anymore.)

A stazon all purpose stamp cleaner solution can be usefull if you want to use more colours of Stazon.  Distress ink can be washed off easily with water/ soapy water (use mild products).

Accesoiries:

Must have for finishing touches:

  • A white gelpen or sharpie (try out several, I still haven’t found my champion yet) (for highlights, adds dimension)
  • Waterbrush (although a dry brush and water will do too but this makes it sooo much easier to “watercolour”.)
  • Black waterproof fineliner (for definition, adds dimension to images)
  • A spray bottle. The regular spray bottles spray quite neatly with fine drops. For the aged and distressed effect you’d need a more coarse sprayer like the ranger spray bottle on the right.

Adhesives:

Glue and double sided gluetape. I actually don’t use this all purpose glue anymore, I use the white glue now: Aleene’s tacky Glue. Glues very well! I don’t reccommend sticks – they dry up brittle and the paper can seperate more easily therefore. For matting (layering) the card I prefer the tape. For sticking on diecuts I use glue or foam dots (not on the picture but easily available at e.g. Action)

 

Cutting tools:

  • A cutting machine makes life so much easier (as opposed to a ruler and cutting knife).
  • Paper scissors – I’ve got two types, one is too small (short blades) to my liking. The one on the picture is my favourite for delicate cutting.

A cutting mat, knife and ruler are still very usefull but I don’t use those a lot anymore for cardmaking.

 

I mentioned embossing powder before. This is not mandatory when you start stamping, it’s like the next step or addon.

Embossing ( making a depression in something) can be done cold and hot. Cold embossing is when you use embossing folders or the old-fashioned way and embossing mat and embossing pen. The paper is pressed (with the tool or a machine) into another shape.

Hot embossing doesn’t actually do anything to the paper – it merely adds plastic to it.I’ll explain.

Stamp with versamark (watermark stamp pad, it is a juicy slightly sticky pad. It is ment to leave a watermark or a thin layer to which other mediums can easily attach: powder. (Pan pastels (which are chalk powders, like eyeshadow) and embossing powder). Embossing powder is actually plastic powder which you pour over the stamped image (stamped with versamark). Shake off the excess (back in the jar) and melt the powder using a heat gun. Or melt it above your stove (though you have to be really careful when doing this). Also on the pictures is an anti-static dust bag (baby powder would do) which reduces the amount of embossing powder that sticks to unstamped parts of the paper .

 

Last: storage.

Ofcourse you don’t need to really think of this right away, but a good storage protects your stamp but also is easily accesible. I could spend a whole post about storage so not going to do that now. Also on the picture is an old cloth, stamp positioning tool and distress markers. Many people use baby wipes (without alcohol. Or lotion, I forgot, as I don’t use them). I’m quite environmentally aware so do not like to use up that many bleached disposable products. So also no kitchen towels for me – I just use old rages. Works fine, you can just wash them. Discoloration of that cloth (due to ink that doesn’t come off) doesn’t reduce it’s usefullness.

I almost forgot one of my best “friends”: the craft sheet! It’s basically a reusable baking (teflon) sheet in brown rather then black, so you can see the colours off it. Most stuff doesn’t stick to it. There are several brands, I prefer the one with a sticky bottom from Flexicover so it doesn’t move.

Flexicover craft sheet large.

Ofcourse you can also start with a non-stick cheaper craft sheet like ones found on craftsheet.nl

 

So my basic list with things that make it easier and finishing touches:

  • Stamps (clear stamps + acryllic block, wood mounted stamps, unmounted foam stamps + EZ mount / mounting foam + acryllic block)
  • Distress ink and Stazon
    • Versafine and Archival up next
  • Hema correspondence cards
  • A white gelpen or sharpie
  • Waterbrush
  • Black waterproof fineliner
  • A spray bottle
  • Tacky (white) glue,
  • double sided adhesive tape
  • A cutting machine
  • Paper sciccors
  • old cloth/towel
  • craft sheet

WOYWW #x – Workspace then and Now.

It’s been a while since I participated in WOYWW, and I am not doing so now as this post has been ready for a while but somehow I don’t manage to post it on Wednesdays. Didn’t participated for the most common reason: major lack of time to be online. I knew I wouldn’t have the time to visit people, so I didn’t participate. I still don’t have much time, but I’d like to show the changes made to my workspace.

Before

An open cupboard, (actually an IKEA PAX cupboard, 58 cm deep, 100cm wide, 236 cm high) with a curtain (from the childrens room from the previous appartment) in front of it. Lots of storage space, but not it didn’t turn out very convenient as I had to keep moving stuff to get to the stuff in the back.

This is how much of my stuff is stuffed away.

This is how much of my stuff is stuffed away.

Turning around, you can see the table, and 3 chests of drawers. Or actually, you can only see one. Two are stacked, and the other one is next to them, below the shoebox decorated with white-rosed paper.

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Here you can see the two stacked ones.

Wednesday 00:40

Wednesday 00:40

Now

(Or rather, end of february 2015). I got another pax, the less deep one (35 cm, still 100cm wide and 238 cm tall) and added doors. Our current bedroom is differently shaped and a bit smaller then the previous one (moved april 2014), so we got sliding doors instead of these hinged doors. At first, I didn’t think they’d fit well in our living room. But now I think they do, it looks way better then the curtain, it looks less cluttered as the floor and cupboardoors match quite well. Also, as you can see, the tower of drawers is now next tot the cupboard.

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Which makes it possible for the tabl e to be extended more, and which makes it look more calm in that corner. (just hink away the mess on the table).Daqadoodles150228za001041005

 

Then onto some (I think clever) storage system. You know how supermarkets sometimes have special offers where you can save stuff? This sheet of metal is from Jan Linders, you could save grocery magnets so the kids could make a grocery list with images. The backside is covered with chalkboard paint.

With double sided tape I stuck it to the door and added some of the sizzix movers and shapers dies to it. This way I can SEE them, and therefore hopefully use them more. I added some tape at the height of the shelve, as I shouldn’t put dies there – they’d hit the shelve if I do. I did add a little helper thingy there, that small square isn’t a die but is meant to be able to lift paper out of sizzix bigz frame dies more easily.

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Note that purple thingy on the cupboard door? It´s a Grippy. It´s meant to keep your cellphone from sliding all over the dashboard of your car. It´s made of the same material as the old slimy hands which you could throw against a wall and then it would walk-climb down. We liked it so we bought a few to give a way as gifts to other nerdy friends, but we forgot about them. Later when I found them I thought I might be able to use them. Now I use them indeed… Put it on an acryllic block, put your unmounted stamp or mounted-but-not-sticking-stamp on it, and voila! Same effect as the tack’npeel, only now both sides are tacky instead just one, and you don’t attach it permanently to your acryllic block. Reason I used this is that I didn’t have a large enough size of tack ‘n peel on an acryllic block, and you attach the tnp permanet to a block. I don’t have multiple same sized big acryllic blocks so I didn’t want it permanently attached.

 

On the other side I stuck two A4 magnetic sheets. I didn’t have any more at the time, meanwhile I have added two more to have a bit more space for my dies. Many dies are on there, some that aren’t are nesting dies, I still prefer those in the metal tin (that used to hold pencils) which I lined with magnetic sheets as well. Now it is very easy to see my dies and pick one. I haven’t noticed I used them more often by the way. I love dies, I keep buying some occasionally, but I don’t use them a lot anymore, I often find it hard to combine them with stamping.

Daqadoodles150228za001440007The bottom shelve is still unsorted, I just stuffed all (or most) remaining paper there. On the next shelve are my binders with stamps, stencils, inventory list, spare mounting foam and a few stuff-tainers.

The third shelve: on the left part in the back are A4 papers/cardboard in my self made magazine files (made from cat litter boxes). I hardly use those papers. In front some tins with brushes and the plain tape. In the tin with the apple on it (stroopblikje) are brushes which my kids are allowed to use. Next to it, HEMA correspondentie kaartjes which I bought recently, I quite like them. In the brown box is A5 cardboard in several colours or designs. Don’t use those often either. Sometimes as backing card. In the blue plastic bin are the larger sizzix dies, many of them second hand. On top of it, you can see the pencil tin which hold some nesting dies, and on top of that a lightly decorated shoebox with unfinished cards inside. I have a new stack to add to it.

4th shelve, more little and big shoeboxes. Above it a shelve with A3 sixed paper and other bits that don’t fit on another shelve.

6th shelve, (6th if the bottom is a shelve too, that is): lots of small shoeboxes. My sponges are on there, distress markers, a very nice wooden alfphabet stamp set.

Shelve above that contains stuff. (Mostly used item from this shelve: the glues that are on the front. The other boxes are much less used).

Top shelve: acryllic paint, finger paint, childrens paint and finished cards. Stored out of reach of enthousiastic childrens hands. Ofcourse, the paint should be in the plastic bin with the yellow lid behind it, but you know how it goes… you grab some paint out, put the bin back, use the paint, clean up everything and quickly store the paint somewhere near the place it should be stored.

Nowadays I don’t buy those large containers of paint anymore – it’s good for large projects but I hardly have those. Now it’s just the ranger paint dabber/do crafts/alleene’s/hema small sized acryllic paint containers. Those fit into the drawers on the right.

The pictures were taken a few weeks ago, currently working on a different project.

Oh I made one more change to the workarea, this was before Easter to be able to hang up some cholates. Let me make a picture, brb!

….

…… sorry it took a bit longer, ofcourse cleaned the table empty (still was stuff on it) and removed the chair with all the clothes.

Bundis upcycled – I’ve always wanted a decorating thing ( those circles which hang above a table and you can decorate?) but not enought to actually buy one. We didn’t have space to hang it anyway. But I wanted to hang up chocolate easter eggs! So I made this, and hung the eggs beneath and had put young plants/seedlings on top.

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The eggs are ofcourse eaten, the seedlings gone outside, and the space reclamed for my glass jars.

Beneath it now are 3 hearts – the smalles one is from Freya, she got it from one of my sisters on her birthday. The other two was a gift for me, they were plain white and for me to decorate. I’ve decorated one with alcohol ink, then put a varnish on top and then stmaped the drops. Problem is I stamped with Versafine rather then Stazon, and oily ink on varnish is not a good idea, doesn’t really adhere/dry. Still have to do the edges and the other side. Oh, and the other heart as well ;)/

 

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The kids aren’t allowed on the table and know glass can break. They’ve left it alone so far, only time when they wanted to get something is the hearts or the mini chest. The hearts can be seen in the bottom of the closet – still brown/not painted. Here, my kids have painted them. For Denise Silva from https://sdenisesilva.wordpress.com/ I’ve put the tissue boxes on the table.  Oh and I altered/repaird my Ikea lampshade a bit more. See here for the first part – now I have repaired the two holes on the edges. Didn’t have that decoupage paper anymore so made my own using plain white tissuepaper and some distress colours.

 

Storage

Ryn from Designs by Ryn asked how people store their stamps. While I was making a picture of it, I thought, why not present my entire storage system. Not all of it is perfect or works well, but it is what I have / use at the moment. I’ll share pictures and pro’s and cons of it.

Unmounted stamps on cling foam

Most of my stamps are mounted on cling foam. It saves space and I like working with acryllic blocks, it allows me to determine the position of the image better due to the outline of the stamp. I can easily place the stamp straight on the block and then line up the block with the edge of the paper.

I store the stamps laminated sheets which I put in binders:

  • bought sheets with 4 holes in them (at Chocolate Baroque);
  • bought sheets with 3 holes in them.
  • Self laminated sheets with self punched holes.
  • In binders per manufacturer: Easy to flip through for inspiration or to get a certain brand out for challenges. Just pick your ordner of brand (and style) of choice, put it on the table and start.

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    I started using an acryllic sheet to protect my stamps when opening the folder, also I put those in between when I am using the laminated sheet on 2 sides, so the stamps don’t press into eachother.

  • bought sheets with 4 holes in them (at Chocolate Baroque);
    • + : fits in to regular binders with the 2 pins.
    • – : in the 2 pin binders the holes are more strained, so they wear out sooner.
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Celtic symbols from Designs by Ryn. (Ok it’s actually called wintersheet I think, but I prefer a seasonless name :P)

 

  • bought sheets with 3 holes in them.
    • + : 3 pin binders are less common in my house (never looked for them in stores, usually there’s the 2 pins there I think), but I have one or two binders who have 3 pins. They fit well in there.
    • + : The force on the sheets is more divided between the holes, the sheet has less room to wiggle around so the holes will tear less easily.
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You could also use custom made backgrounds, here I only spritzed with orange inkwater. Beneath the samp you can see the sheet/image of the stamp, so I have all the information ready. You could laminate the original paper, but I scanned it and printed it out, as I use the originals in another binder, my index binder. Ofcourse, you can also just stamp the image and write the details of it by hand, but now I’ve got the logo of the designer (Designs by Ryn) on it as well.

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Here I mainly gave the sheet a title (Deep Red), and stampd all images on the paper, wrote the stampsname and number beneath it and laminated it. I only forgot about the holes…ooops… It just fits, but I should remember that next time (make a “kantlijn”- a margin line?)

 

  • Self laminated sheets with self punched holes.
    • + : no uneccesary holes, make as many as you need in the right places
    • + : you can laminate the stamped image / manufacturer
    • + : it’s cheaper
    • +/- : even with laminated cardstock they seem a bit more bendable then the bought ones. This could be fixed by adding an extra sheet of carstock, but then the cardstock has to be made smaller then it is now for laminating. There’s a 3-4 mm edge now with standard A4 sheets which is good, but for thicker paper this edge shout be wider.
    • ?: I don’t know what the sheets are made of, so don’t know the long term effects on the cling foam.
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I started redoing my binders, as I used to have the stamps stored face up on the page so I see the stamps when I browse the binder. But this one had the images on the left side, stamps on the other side, face down. Hmm isn’t that a good idea? Daqadoodles150505di092707025Have the image on one side, and the stamp on the back? The disadvantage is maybe more stamps falling off while browsing?

  • I forgot a 4th one: Sheets that are allready “ready to use

 

Mounting foam

Sometimes normal foam mounted stamps fall off. I can’t remember on which sheets they have been stored – I’ve moved them around a bit. It’s also the usage /dust that makes them less sticky. I get them to stick again by making sure the cling isn’t dirty, then rubbing it on my clothes to try to enhance the static part of it again. This doesn’t work for all though.  Other, better tips to revitatlize cling foam is much appreciated!

Cling foil

In the previous picture you can see a stamp sticking out – It’s a background stamp with cling foil. I don’t know the exact name, but it’s not the EZ-mount foam, but more like a plastic cover which shows the image. It doesn’t stick well to laminated sheets. It’s so annoying and can damage the stamps, as when a stamp falls off and I put a binder back in the cupboard I might put it half on the stamp so the stamp is dented… happened once..

Stamps with this foil are often stampendous stamps / hero arts big stamps. I would really appreciate tips on how to make them stick to the acryllic block, cleaning them with a wet cloth doesn’t help. Even directly new out of the packaging they don’t stick well, I’ve had them all inked up falling off acryllic blocks onto my project :(. Now I used them in combination with Tack ‘n Peel, like the unmounted stamps. So the stamping part is sorted, but not the storing part. Tips?

Clear stamps

I store them on the same laminated sheets. Small stamps I might store in thintainers.

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Unmounted stamps without cling foam

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Not the best solution, I know. It was origianly a box to store stamps that still had to be mounted, but then it became a storage for the small stamps. I don’t mount them anymore, I use Tack ‘n peel. The two acryllic blocks on the picture have this on them, the left one had it on for a while (I hardly clean it, if I would, it would be more transparent still but it’s fine like this). I put some leftover tack ‘n peel on the right one just a few evenings ago. Works good for small stamps, thought be careful with very thin rubber stamps (like The Stempelwinkel), it theoretically is possible to tear the stamp when pulling it off.

Mounted stamps

Some I store in Thick Stufftainers (see a previous picture), others are stored.. well.. like this:

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It’s not really stored, it’s more like… gathered in this box so they wouldn’t be roaming about.

Indexating and masks

Now, how do I know which stamp is where? I write on the binder which designer/brands of stamps are in it. Designs by Ryn and Chocolate Baroque have their own binders, other brands have to share. For more easier browsing images I have a showcase album. I put the imagesheets from the manufacturer/designer in, if the image is on the sheet. If not, then I have to stamp them and then put them in the file. Or only the empty backingsheet (with usually the brandname and stampname) goes in, as a reminder I still need to stamp it…

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You can see on these images my own made masks, made from normal (coloured) paper and spray glue – the glue should be non-stick if left to dry after spraying, but I’ve found it does stick eventually a bit too much. I’ve looked around for another (cheap) easy solution and I found one.Daqadoodles150505di092824027

Here are the Designs by Ryn sheets, and the masks are stamped onto (mostly) transparant) self adhesive window foil (zelfklevende transparante raamfolie). The advantage of these showcases is that I can put the masks on the image, so I won’t loose them and it’s easier to reuse them. Making a mask can take some extra time, but then you won’t have to do it again for quite a while, if handled well the masks lasts long. Do make them less sticky before sticking them onto your paper though! You can do this by sticking them onto your clothes and/or skin. Test on some scrappaper, I’ve been in a hurry and didn’t do this properly after making a mask, and put it down on still slightly damp paper… when taking it off it tore off a small bit of the top layer. I could repair it luckily, but still.

Cutting dies

I’ve mentioned these before:

Hmm oh right, that is still a concept post… Ok retry: I’m mentioning my entire workspace/storage area including the dies in an upcoming post. [edit: here!]Here’s a preview:

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Stencils

Last, my stencils. They were in that showcase album before too, but it didn’t fit anymore so I searched for something else.

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This is another showcase folder, and it works ok. I haven’t really sorted the stencils in there as I like browsing through them. Ofcourse you could sort them on brand/designer, theme, size etc, and I have done that for quite a while. Only when I am in a rush (or have made it later then bedtime allready) I’m not very picky about where I put the stencils back in. I just put them in a pocket that isn’t too full allready. I probably will sort them again in a while untill it’s a complete mess again.

If it wasn’t clear yet that I’m addicted to stamp and stencils then I think it’s clear now… I have more then enough of them, I should stop buyin…oooooh pretty stencil on sale….brb!

Any questions or tips? Please share!

IKEA Regolit – fixed!

What do you do when you IKEA regolit lamp has taken some beatings? (kids, cutlery, moving, etc…)

Unfortunately the paper-thing isn’t sold separately. Throw it out? Nah, that would be a waste. The rest of the lamp is ok, it’s just the lamphood (or whatever it’s called in english).

It had a few holes, but nothing too bad. In the past few months it seemed to have gotten worse. I haven’t got a picture of where you can see how the flaps hang down, but here is a picture of it after I took it off, ready to be fixed. You can imagine it’s not really a pretty sight when it’s hanging.

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So what did I do?

I put in my craftsheet, took out some tissue paper, decoupage pager and degoupage glue and had fun.

Daqadoodles150222zo114410001Here it’s lying flat, ready to be fixed.

Tear your tissue paper in pieces. Don’t cut! Try to get all edges torn – it blends better with the rest that way, else you’ll keep seing the cut edges very well. Put a royal amount of decoupate glue (I used Mod Podge) on the lampshade (aah I think that’s the word!) and put the paper on it, smooth it out with a dry brush. Be careful, it might rip. I didn’t put the second layer of mod podge on right away, as it sometimes causes the paper to tear up too easily. If needed, let it dry a bit first. I just went on to the next gap and fixed that, used several small bits and folded it around the ring a bit too. When layering it on another tissue paper, make sure there is glue in between. Be careful of only working on the craftsheet – I didn’t move it once it was in place, only got it out after everything was dry. I didn’t fix the hole on the right yet, as the craftsheet wasn’t under it and I didn’t want to risk sticking the top of the lampshade to the bottom.

It looked quite ok after this fix, but while I was at it, I thought: why not decorate it a bit more?
So I got out some decoupage paper. I didn’t want to decorate the entire bottom as it ofcourse influences the light coming from the lamp, and as it’s used as a light above our dinner table it’s nice if it is actually light. So no total coverage. No torn pieces of paper this time also.

I got my cuttlebug out, chose some dies and cut the decoupage paper. I decorated it rather sparsely, but I’m happy with the results.

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Yes, you still see some lines of the tissue paper, but it’s not as apparent as on the pictures. Also, you could add more die cuts to it. I might still do that, if I find the time.

For now, the hanging bits of paper are out of the way, and the lamp looks good again, with a little personal touch. I can’t wait for more holes to appear again, so I can decorate it a bit more ;).

 

WOYWW #271

Time for another WOYWW, hosted by Julia from Stamping Ground. Curious what it is about? Hop on over to her site!

This is what my desk looked like after 1 1/2 hour of crafting (I did clean up a bit in between as I didn’t have space). This time I didn’t keep my crafting area clear, usually I put down a bigger cutting mat and try to keep that clear of stuff so I have room to do the actual crafting. Not this time, I just wanted to make some simple things, envelopes, and decorate them with a stencil and some distress ink – nothing fancy – so figured I didn’t need that much room.

wednesday 00:39

wednesday 00:39

What’s on there: A card of aluminium foil and a “copper” frame, heattool, distress markers, empty teacup, distress ink, embossing powder, can of paintbrushes, box of glue related things and things that aren’t glue related (you know, other things like a small package of brads, and just… little things in packages that I might use if they are on my table, but definetely won’t use if I put them out of sight). (Putting them on my table isn’t helping).

What’s more on there: a tin can with my childresn crayons which I confiscated. They rarely used them (in the Netherlands, children colour more with pencils (potloden) or felttip markers (viltstiften). On top of it is a spray can of sealer which I have never used yet, then you can see a binder in the back with some of my stamps, and on the right a drawer with my distress inks in it – I always just get the drawer out and put it on the table / chair.

Oh I forgot my wellbeloved spraythingy – unfortunately it got loose again so I’ll have to fix it, but need to fix it so it won’t leak this time. (The previous fix was putting the spray top on the glass jar because the original orange spray jar broke). [Oooh what a coïncidence, in that post is also the quote I have referred to a few times lately!]Oh, and those heart stickers on there: They have kind of become my pincushion. (What?) yup, pincushion for just 1 needle, and that one needle/pin (can you see it’s yellow head?) is to open up the tip of the glossy accents bottle, which is seen next to the drawer.

Let’s take a look to the left and a step back.

Wednesday 00:40

Wednesday 00:40

My frame for hanging nearly finsihed cards.

My ikea drawers with many of my supplies, two boxes which I need at hand. (It started out as one half box, then it got one full box quite soon, and now in the past month somehowe another box moved in there.) You can see into the second drawer, here are my other (big) inkpads, the little ones are in another drawer with the chalks.

Do you see the dowels sticking out of the drawer? That is my solution to nosy babies. You can imagine that having craft supplies in the same room where little kids play isn’t very safe. (health, furniture, money etc..) I wanted a simple solution so my son (at that time I only had him) couldn’t open the drawers. I’ve had the drawers for quite a long time and I had always planned to paint/decorate the sides but never done it yet. Because of this I didn’t feel bad about drilling holes in them.

Wednesday 00:41

Wednesday 00:41

My embossing powders (I still want some bright yellow!) and my “lock” solutions. A hole in the side of the board and drawer, a dowel in it and it’s closed. Don’t stuff your drawers so the dowel can’t be moved in though! How to open? Take a pencil/pen/thingy, and push the dowel in.

How do you prevent your kids from figuring this out too soon? Don’t open the drawers when they can see you do it. My son (aged 3) hasn’t noticed the dowels yet, so this fix still works.

Now, let’s put the camera away amd tidy things up a bit.

Wednesday 00:52

Wednesday 00:52

And then it really was time for bed!

Hello autumn, winter and spring babies! and a WWOYWW

What was on your workdesk wednesday in November 2013.

Well, there was babies, and mess. Let’s take a look…

Today I want to show you three baby cards, two which I made in November last year (november 2013), and one I made after 3rd of July, because I wanted to send them a birth announcement card but hadn’t yet congratulated them on their baby which was born in March! Ok, they didn’t have my adress so I got the announcement card from my mom, but better late wishes than none, right?

I am most pleased with the first two cards, although they took quite some time to make.

I’ll start with the one that has stamps from Designs by Ryn on them:

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I stamped the fairies on top and repeat stamped the leaves and acorns, masking them off with self adhesive window foil. After that, I coloured them in, I think with my Caran D’ache neocolours.

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Used stamps:

Dancing Faeries CM-M6 from Designs by Ryn

Acorn Faerie set  CM-M12 from Designs by Ryn (used only the leaf and acorn)

The letters were made with a Joy Craft alphabet die

The baby stamp is from Stampinback: Sleeping baby.

 

 

Next is a card I made sort of simlutaneously. This is the birthannouncement card:

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The stork is the logo of the city The Hague, where they live. The stork is also said to deliver the babies. The colours of the city are green and yellow, so they kept in style. I like how they made it a unique and personal card.

This is what I made, I didn’t make a winter scene although they have snow on the card, I made an autumn card as the baby was born in October.Daqadoodles131115vr183800

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I made this card with the same sleeping baby stamp, and stamps from Nonsequiturstamps – Plate 101 Trees, NSPL101.

A little bit of the process and What’s On Your Workdesk-ness:

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On the left the self adhesive window foil, with the cut out templates. The stamps are there too. Memento and STazon inks, a remote for the tv, acryllic block, and in that metal tin for pencils weren’t pencils. I don’t know what was in there, but what is in there now is different from what was in there then, and back then it weren’t pencils allready. (Now it stores quite a few of my cutting dies).

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Oh right, Christmas was nearing so I made a few Christmas ornaments for cards allready. And see the card on the top right? That one I made for my father, I’ll post about it later.

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A furhter look down the table. A binder with stamps in it, the couch behind the table (and isn’t that a sleeping toddler on it?) – as we were preparing to move I had gotten the brilliant idea of emptying one of the living rooms so we could store the boxes in there, which meant moving the dining table to the other living room. It was a bit cramped in there though.

 

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Oh look, here’s a better view. And no, that is not my applejuice in the bottle, nor is it my ambulance. In the back 2 binders with stamps and 1 with dies (that storage solution didn’t work, I didn’t put the cutting dies back properly and they also fell out too easily.)

On to the last card with the sleeping baby.

Used on the background and the center piece: Chocolate Baroque Floral Edges Unmounted Rubber stamp sheet – A5 Part Number UA5SP0416

The little butterfly is probably from one of the faeries or dragon sets from Chocolate Baroque

The text (barely readible on the photo) is from Sheena Douglas – Crafter’s Companion – A little bit magical – Knowledge

The fairy is from.. can’t remember. She’s got glossy accents on her wings.

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Health, Wealth, Happiness, Love, Always! From Sheena Douglas – A little bit magical – Knowledge set. The embossing didn’t quite work out as intended unfortunately. But no time to make a new card or cover it up, it’s just the magic wish flowing from the fairy’s hand.

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I tried to use the same colours as on the birth announcement card, and (as seen in previous picture) added a butterfly at the end of the swirl to match it even more.

 

I really liked the first two cards, and might make more of these. Use the colours of the birth announcement card, or the season in which the baby is born or other elements that I can reuse.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WOYWW # 269: Time is the essence of life

It’s been a while since I participated in a WOYWW, but it’s about time I did again, as I made some pictures while making the card for the first Chocolate Baroque colour challange (july/august). See the end of the post for the picture of the card, and another desk- picture. (For an older desk picture, of how it was back on November, see my next post. (Yup, NEXT post. I’m not working in an entirely chronological order when it comes to blogging – I can time travel, hurray!).

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Hmm now what’s on there: My heat tool, a cloth, my much beloved broken and fixed water sprayer, distress inks, stazon inks, Chocolate Baroque stamp, glue, embossing ink, acryllic blocks, stamppositioner, embossing powder, an empty teacup (hurray! I emptied it!), cuttlebug, binder with stampimages, scissors, my phone, waterbrush, another cloth – I love that one too. It’s an old rag, almost falling apart, but it’s just the right size, right absorbency, and been with me all my “crafting” life. The yellow cloth is not as good, that one is for cleaning the desk or acryllic blocks. The smudgy rag is for lifting off water / ink from cards.

After having received a new stencil (clockwork from Tim Holtz) I ofcourse had to play with it, even while my kids were around. Ofcourse that resulted in them playing with it and me trying to keep things in one piece. I took some light coloured distress inks (so the inkstains on their hands would not be very intense), and having the Chocolate Baroque colour challenge in mind I took out my distress inks Tumbled Glass and Shabby Shutters.

I liked the colour and stencil combination a lot, so I managed to grab a piece of cardstock for myself and started on the next project.

The clockwheels were great, but I needed to add some (CB) stamps too, and I was thinking Steampunk style. I browsed through my stamps, stopped at the Steampunk Christmas set and chose the flowers from that set.

Then trying out some different stamping inks (Stazon red, DI festive berries or fired brick, only embossing ink and embossing with red or Queens gold embossing powder). Wiping away the ink a bit on the holly leaves of the stamp, inking only the middle or outer leaves and restamping with the stampruler and embossing it, then colouring it with DI and water. Used colours: Fired Brick, Mustard Seed and Scattered Straw.

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I had a quick detour while playing with the stamps from Design by Ryn and alcohol ink, using the cover from the EZ-mount foam as base. Too bad one side was too smooth, luckily the stamps were sort of symmetric so they still fit on the piece of backing.

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Then choosing the flowers which would go on the card, and the layout. I had intended for a small flower on a big flower at first, but liked 2 big flowers twisted in eachother too. Only that would cover too much of the stenciling. A small flower on a big flower would cover the lovely gold embossed gear too much. So only 1 flower per clockwork.

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Next, some text. I wanted it to be time related. My neece, who is still on the IC in the hospital, will need lots of time to recover (if she recovers). We believe in her, and that it only takes time for her to “grow” again.  It made me think of this song:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j7eFYtkOiXo   Nitin Sawhney – Street Guru.

In it, there is a line: Time is the essence of life.

It just fit my mood, so there we are, the sentiment. Stamped in black, and distressed with aged paper and scattered straw.

Last were the butterflies, I wanted to add some more blue to it, so stamped the CB butterfly from the summer fairy set several times. I kind of repeated the process for the flowers: clear embossing, black embossing, silverywhite embossing, no embossing. Coloured them with Distress inks and Caran D’ache Neocolors. Oh and I used glossy accent on some of them.

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Then I remembered the small wooden laser cut butterflies I had recently bought at the Xenos. I applied some gesso to it, and coloured them with the Caran D’ache Neocolors and added glossy accent to three of the prettiest.

The outline of the stencil is a bit wobbly/aged, I liked that so I cut out a “frame” equally wobbly. The basecard is straight. I coloured that with brushed corduroy, vintage photo and a little bit of black sooth and a tiny bit of real coffee. (There are more crafters out there that dip their brush in their drinks when in need of just a tiny bit of water and having no water around…right??) I wanted it to be brown to be a bit more clocklike, like an old standing clock (I know that is not the right english word for it, it’s the literal translation of the dutch word, but I think you know what I mean).

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It was fun making it, and I am pleased with the result, eventough some more green wouldn’t be too bad. Then again, the stencilling would get lost if more is added. I think the card would be great too with just the stencilling and one flower, that would be a nice card too. I’ll keep that in mind when I’m in need for a quick card. Just the stencilling, a flower, maybe even a butterfly – I still have lots of those two lying around now – and a fitting sentiment and voila, ready! (Then there is matting the card and making the envelop – I hate making those, as I usually discover at the last moment that I don’t have an envelop that fits!)

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My dining table in the end, just this afternoon (the other picture was of 2 days ago):

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WOYWW # 227, my showcase cupboard and a happy boy

I’ve been seeing various people join in on WOYWW (What’s On Your Workdesk Wednesday) from Stamping Ground, and I’ve had the idea of joining for some time now, but I was too late each time. It’s 23:35 now, and I was in a rush as I thought it was Wednesday allready. Guess what, it’s still Tuesday! So I’m on time. Technically, it’s a picture taken at Tuesday, but I have to clean my workdesk each day (as it is our dining table), and tomorrow I won’t have time to craft (so no interesting picture there). Also, I don’t think I’ve cleaned it up before midnight – still some minor things to finish, and then clean, so actually it IS a Wednesday situation. Well then, here’s the picture:

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Yup, that is my table, on it is a card I am working on, before applying the mod podge. You can see diecuts lying around, those are supposed to be going on the card. My box of cuttlebug folders and a few sizzix dies,, the rest is either quite clear what it is or not visible enough. Let me try a different angle:

Daqadoodles13_10_08_23307My crafting cupboard. Or rather, one of my crafting cupboards. I’ve made an extra shelve last week (in my previous posts I had mentioned cleaning up), it’s the one shelve in the different colour. The brown oranizers contain my stamps, and there’s lots of paper. Behind the blue bin with folders is a decoupaged box with scraps, on top of that is my box of rubber unmounted stamps which I won’t put on ez-mount because they are too small or because the foam doesn’t stick anymore, I use an acryllic block with a sticky thingy on it. (I forgot the name. Tacky stuff?)

My showcase place

Another important place is the place I take my pictures. Or used to. It’s across from the table:

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Actually it’s different now, as it has two copper lamps and a copper phone on it. Also the 3 chests of drawers are gone, and the stuff on top of the cupboard which is seen in the mirror is gone. The big cupboard with drawers also contains mostly crafting stuff. It is a bit of a showcase place though. I love the mirror, love the lavalamp, like the dried flowers (Don’t tell anyone I do, I only like THESE dried flowers). And I love bananas.

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I still love the lava lamp, it’s fun to watch.

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My “pressing station” and a frame with postcards from French Kissed Postcards, which are in split in new frames now (see previous post Copper Kisses).

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The pressing station exists of a spare glass plate (for inside a cupboard) with the cardboard from the packaging (I glued a wallpaper sample on it so it looks pretty) and a salt crystal lamp without the lightbulbfitting and wire. (I still need to replace the lightbulb, it’s broken, and therefore the fitting is not in it). Also seen is my card-stand thingy. I found that the light is better if the card is slightly tilted, but ofcourse it won’t stand on it’s own so I made this simple ugly thing. Good thing it’s not visible on pictures. Oh, and the purpose of my pressing station is to reflatten cards or papers. Just put it beneath the glass plate, put the heavy salt lamp back on top and leave for a day or so. Papers come out almost completely flat.

Ofcourse, with all the moving of stuff I’ve done, the pressing station has moved to. Or actually, has been “dismantled”- I still have to find a new spot for it.

This is what is on top of the cupboard now:

One polished and one unpolished ship lantern and a copper telephone.

One polished and one unpolished ship lantern and a copper telephone.

The copper telephone is complete, but I took some parts off to clean it better. It still has to be cleaned more, but it’s ok for now. I love the ship lanterns, although I doubt if they really were used on a ship – I think these were made and meant for in a house. Maybe one day we’ll reinstall the wire and hang them, but for now, I like them on that cupboard.

Happy birthday boy

One more thing I’d like to mention: In my previous post preparations (and a birthdaycard for a 5 year old) I showed the card I made for that boy. We also gave him a toy bus, and at the last moment I decided to add some coins to the card. I don’t like to give money to a child, but I know children love getting money, or coins. Not paper money, but coins they can count. The boy who these gifts were for is lightly autistic, and has a strong opinion about toys he does or doesn’t like. We were told he liked public transport things, hence the bus and the train-themed card.

The toy was very well received, he and his younger brother play in turn with it, they both love it. He was delighted with the coins, counting them several times a day. And the card? He loves it! He even insisted on taking it to school to show his teacher the next day, and later that night was in tears because he couldn’t find the card when he went to bed, and he wanted to take it to bed with him. He had been walking around with it 2 minutes prior to that, so it wasn’t far gone – it was actually lying on a cupboard near his bed.

This moves me. How a child can be happy with simple things like that! I’m so glad I decided to also make  card for him. Usually, when we go to a kids birthday, we only bring a toy, it is not a custom in this part of the Netherlands to also bring a card. You mail a card, bring a gift.

So, it’s half past twelve now (00:30), and the table hasn’t changed much. So here it goes, my first WOYWW.

(Oh, the post isn’t up yet on the blog – I’ll add my entry in the morning!)

And here is how the dining table / crafting area looks now:

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Preparations

It’s like a hurricane was in the dining room – why? I’ll explain further down the post.

Somewhere in between creating the hurricane-look I also made a card for the son of a friend, who will be 5 (or was it 6?). He is really into public transport, so I did my best to relate to that. I started out with a tardis from Vivalasvegastamps and chalk (well I did that (the tardis) more for his mother, who probably knows dr. Who), a track  from Stampinback and a Thomas the Train stamp-cut out. And some balloons. After I had done my best to colour in the balloons with my Neocolor crayons to get a good color coverage, I remembered another stamp from Crafty individuals: Boys Toys. Stamped that on top and then I had to “fix” the balloons a bit. I used my white gelpen freely. I would use it less if I had thought of that stamp sooner, but now it was just too much going on on one layer,  I used it to create another layer. More Caran D’ache Neon Colors later, and gluing it on a red card and it was done.

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The idea was that T. would be making a drawing, but he got caught up in “cutting”. I just recently started to let him cut with a real steal (childrens) scissors, as the so called safe ones from plastic are too difficult to cut with. First, he got a little plastic scissors which was in a drawing set. It didn’t cut, so I searched for my old one when I was a kid, but the blade was loose so that didn’t really cut either. Then I bought plastic scissors which were a bit bigger, thinking those would be better then the first ones as it wasn’t included in a cheap set, but they didn’t cut. Today I bought metal childresn scissors, they cut perfectly. Only they are for left-handed children, and although T doesn’t have a clear preference yet, I think he’s right handed…. so… *sigh* still not the righ scissors.  so he was cutting enthousiastically, and not really making anything anymore, he was just cutting. Even in his drawing. The remaining bit of paper looks too much as a left over to be given. So after he went to bed I finished my card (I stopped at the balloons bit, so when I got back to the card I remembered the stamp).

I also told you my daughter will be 1 soon. I am preparing a little bit for it, I made a small chocolage “biscuit” cake tonight, and put it in the freezer. A day before her birthday I’ll get it out and decorate it more. I also have to make a bigger cake. Theme for the cakes will be Maya de Bij.

It is not going to be very fancy, just green fondant over the cake (oh and some filling, don’t know what yet) and then these flowers I made tonight as decoration, together with a toy Maja.

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Not really perfect… my previous “cake biscuits” ones were better. I guess that’s beginners luck.

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Flowers and bows. Flowers with cutters from Albert Heijn (a Dutch big grocery chain), and the bow is from a mould.

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When I was done I remembered I hadn’t thought of the treats for the daycare! How could I forget! Luckily I still have 1 week to think of something.

So, back to the hurricane. In my previous post I mentioned renovation, storing and storage. So I am in the process of cleaning out cupboard and organizing my crafting stuff. I knew I had lots of wasted space (and lots of waste too, actually, because of bad usage of storage. I’ve got 3 Ikea drawer chests, (If that is the right english word for “ladekastjes”) – they don’t sell them anymore, but ever since my previous move (so not the last one but the one before that) some of the drawers were kind of filled with stuff I didn’t know where to put or which I still had to sort. Others kept my jewelry making stuff (nothing fancy like gold or silver, but the beads kind of jewellry). I haven’t made a necklace or a bracelet in ages, and still the beads and tools were taking up 2 drawers. I moved most of it into 1 drawer now, and plan to use it on cards. My inks and inking tools were kept in little shoeboxes (childrens shoeboxes are great storage – they still fit inside the cupboard, as opposed to some of my shoeboxes which are just an inch too long to put in efficiently). Anyway, the inks have moved to the chest of drawers, and I added wheels to the bottom, and moved the whole thing under the dining table. Tadaaa! The 2nd cupboard is dedicated entirely to my kids crafting, none of my stuff in there (ok except for printing labels). Also with weels, and on the other side under the table.

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Halfway – the little sidetable I made on a blue monday in furniture / woodworking school, it was behind a big chair but placed here because it would go to storage. Ofcourse it got used immediately to put my binders with stamps on, while I was cleaning out the bookshelves on the left.

So much junk in this picture, most of the used and usefull stuff was allready moved to the cupboard on the right. Because I made an extra shelve in that cupboard (and I needed to paint it), the organizers couldn’t go in yet.  And there is also the Med-Comfort: the latex gloves which I bought a size to big, so they are annoying to use. I bought household gloves the other day, and thinking about my mistake here, took a small size. You can guess what I’ll say next. Yes. They were too small, my fingers went numb if I wore them for more then 10 minutes. So, onto the positive things in this picture: Look at my “work in progress board” – I still have to make a post about it. I like it a lot 🙂

Bookcase gone, sidetable gone, empty walls again! But the table is still cluttered, and I didn't dare put the extra table in the picture...

Bookcase gone, sidetable gone, empty walls again! But the table is still cluttered, and I didn’t dare put the extra table in the picture…

The top between the lower and upper cupboard on the left also is full of stuff that needs to be sorted. Laundry is under the kids chair. See the chest of drawers next to the red childrens chair? On the other side of the table is my chest of drawers. I know the memoboard is full too, it can be taken off as well, but first I’ll sort all the loose stuff that is lying around.

I think you’ve seen enough junk and chaos. I’ll conclude this post with a beautifull image. Please respect the authors copyright, and if repinning/sharing it, include the name of the artist and website. (phatpuppy facebook.com/phatpuppyart).

Pinned on Pinterest “My World and Welcome to It by phatpuppy (facebook.com/phatpuppyart) By request of the artist: please do not remove artist name or facebook link when repinning.

Top 3 at Country View Crafts Challenge!

I had great news last week, I made top 3 at the Country View Crafts Challenge of August with my mermaid card!

(Oh, and did you see my badge about the top 3 of the Craft Room Challenge in the beginning of August?!)

Jay!! I’m quite proud at it. I know my cards have improved, but there is still so much to learn, so much room for improvement, and still also plenty of cards that are a bit mwah (or plain failures). A year ago I saw this quote on pinterest, and it keeps inspiring me. Not only to craft, but to post each card, even the failed ones. Later on, when I mostly make awesome cards (I keep hoping), I can look back and see the journey I made. Others can see the journey I made.

Oh the quote… yes… let me grab it.

The Gap

So yes, I am happy with the top 3! Being chosen in a top 3 is very flattering.

So, the Country Views Crafts’ Challenge. I love how it is a mix of styles, how I feel I can post my non-cute style there without feeling completely out of place. Along with a spot in the top 3 I am also invited to make a guest-designer piece for the next challenge. As soon as I heard more about it I started crafting, and several unfinished projects are scattered around now. I like each one, and dislike several things on each one. How do you go from there? How do you choose? Well I’ve still got a few days to finish one.

Making choices is not my strongest point. It shows in the amount of words I use to express myself. I cannot choose amongst words. I cannot choose between pictures. And now I am also asked to send in only 2 pictures of my project, and one of myself (aargh!) and a short  description about me. Oh dear.

Anyway, onto something totally different.

My Mister

No, not my partner, I mean my water spray tool thingy (plantenspuit/waterspray ding) (I don’t even know the dutch word for it, haha). Anyway, this thing is called a mister in english. With toddlers in the house, things can break, including one of your most favourite, treasured and cherished craft items. A year (or two) ago I allready mentioned it. Here it is, in perfect shape still:

Daqadoodles12_02_16_16594(See that clock background I made? I still haven’t used it….)

My lovely mister from Ikea, unavailable now. It made the most beautiful water drops. See this card:

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So it fell, and the plastic broke. Ofcourse I used it as an example to my son why you should be carefull with things, and that things can break (he let it drop on the floor).

Broken. (the rubber cover of the top had come off a few months earlier)

Broken. (the rubber cover of the top had come off a few months earlier)

But I’m a crafter, and the pump itself was not broken, just the bottle, so I searched for a little glass jar in which I would fit the pump. And now, the rest of the story is beneath the pictures.

It doesn’t hold as much water as it used too (but I didn’t have to refull often anyway) and it looks less romantic. It reminds me of some sort of cyborg/robot/steampunkassembled thingy. And I can’t spot it that fast now, as it’s not bright orange. It does fit better in my cupboard though.

Oh, and for my son, he can use this misterthingy. It used to hold a sweet candy spray, and my nephews bought it on a day out and I asked one of them if I could have it if he finished it. He was fine with it. It has a very fine spray, and it’s a bit harder to aim with, but at least it can’t fall and break!

I placed the ink next to it so you have an idea of the size.

I placed the ink next to it so you have an idea of the size.

One thing I should not forget, the new pump leaks, as I didn’t saw straight. I could try to fill up the gaps with glue, but I think I just keep it straight up. That works for me!

Here is a sneek peek of some other projects (that involve paint and decoupage) that I still have to blog about or which are lying around:

Thank you for visiting!

ps: the post might be a little more cluttered then usual, but my time is limited. Kids have not been wanting to sleep before 22:00ish (10:00PM) for several days, and it was busy at work, so I’m kind of tired… I need to put less words in my post. But, as said earlier, I can’t choose which words to leave out 😛