Sunday, April 26, 2015

Hand Painted Roses on Cards

Who doesn't love roses?

I love growing them, drying them, sewing them with silk ribbon and painting them

My previouss post was cards made with this Sizzix On The Edge Die and I could not wait to make some with painted roses.  The lacy edge combined with pale roses is stunning. I love painting on black  and the cards look amazing with either coloured inserts or a greeting written with white ink

If you would like to learn decorative painting it is easier than you think as you build on your skills stroke by is similar to the way you learn the alphabet or a musical instrument, rather than being born with "artistic talent".  I believe everyone is born with some creativity but often lack of confidence and self doubt gets in the way of it! I didn't start painting until I was 55 and many good painters only take it up when they retire.

I teach arts and crafts on cruise ships and one of my favourite things is seeing passengers who have just made something for the very first time

If you want to start painting there are many helpful links with ideas, tips and projects. 

. There are hundreds of projects for all skill levels on the DecoArt site

I painted these cards with DecoArt Americana Paint on black card. is a quality paint with a smooth consistency and  comes in a wide range of colours


If you are a beginner you can achieve beautiful results with a new series of folk art painting kits called Folk It   The kits are designed to enable you to learn the basic skills of folk art and you can create beautiful hearts, greeting cards and home decor items using these skills. Everything you need to start is in the kits including brushes, paints a, surfaces and patterns

Give it a will love it!


Friday, April 24, 2015

Sizzix On the Edge Doily Cards

How exciting when you get a new die!

I already have a Sizzix doily die but wanted to try the Tim Holtz On the Edge one. I think it is discontinued but you should be able to find one online. I ordered mine from the US on Amazon UK and was happy with the price

I found the best weight of card to use was 220gsm. I tried thicker card but it was too difficult to get a clean crease and also to poke out the little itsy bitsy pieces

The top of this one is vintage lace and the inner is pearlised embossed card

....for the background here I applied soft artists' pastels in pink and green, rubbed gently with kitchen towel and set it with hair spray. The beautiful rose image is from the Graphics Fairy site and was applied with spray adhesive

This would be a good choice for a wedding or Christening invitation

A nice cheerful card with paper daisies and a rhinestone flower - it's good to mix textures and colours

 I had a lot of fun making these and hope you enjoyed seeing them



Sunday, April 5, 2015

Round Pin Cushion Tutorial - make from an upcycled cashmere sweater

It is a beautiful day in Edinburgh - great for children rolling their Easter eggs

Not for me however as I have been busy crafting and preparing lesson plans.

This year I will be teaching again on cruise ships and am always trying to come up with new projects....

What do you do with that favourite cashmere sweater or cardigan? You can only shave off these little  pilled balls for so long until it is eventually unwearable.

I have always liked these pin cushions so thought I would try making some.....they are super easy and quick to make and woukd make lovely gifts

Also this is a nice way to use up your stash of buttons and bling to make each a One of a Kind

To make one you will need;
A piece of cashmere
Embroidery floss or crochet cotton
Polyester filling
A button
Pinking Scissors
Needles (it is helpful to use a long needle for the final step) 

Fold the fabric in two with the right sides together. 
Pin together and draw round the edge of a small saucer or plate with an air erasable pen (mine was in the loft so I used a Sharpie and made sure I cut inside the marking). I used a 10cm saucer.

Cut out with pinking shears to prevent fraying

Sew together with backstitches approximately 3mm from the edge,  leaving a small gap to insert the filling, Then cut a few nicks

Turn inside out, stuff and sew the open part with small stitches

Bring the needle with double floss up from the back to the front at the centre point, pulling gently, then over to the back again. Repeat this until you have the required number of segments* (sorry I did not take a picture)

*you may find it helpful to make a paper template and fold in half two or three times and use this as a guide for the segments. I did it without a template and it is ok for me....I always say if you want something perfect buy manufactured not crafted 

This one goes nicely with the needle case I made recently

and this lily was cut with a o, then tinted with watercolours

and this one is embellished with a tatted flower  and hand made tassel (please see my earlier post for how to make tassels)

Since writing this post I have tried washing the cashmere in a 60 deg wash  - this works a treat and felts the wool: this prevents fraying, so you can cut with ordinary, rather than pinking scissors.
Happy crafting.........