9 May 2013

Stampotique Designers Challenge SDC99 Summertime

 The Stampotique Challenge set by Carol was Summer but as I live in Scotland which does not always have bright days I was thinking about the colours of the West Coast of Scotland. Photos are probably the easiest way to show how this came about. The journalling says "As the sun sets the Selkie comes out to lure the unwary to a watery wedding...". Selkies are are a Scottish myth and are sea creatures that are seals in the water and beautiful people on land.  I thought my Stampotique Mermaid added a more sinister twist. I began by creating texture using gesso.
Then using watercolours created the landscape.
I added Titan White and Buff
Stamped texture in the distance using Angel Wings...

Stamped the mermaid, coloured her and placed her on a "rock" cut her out and added her and journalling to the page.

8 May 2013

Art Journal circular textures (edit to fix photos)

I feel like I have been going round in ever decreasing circles as we try to work out the future. These pages began with gesso and whilst it was still wet I added some inky circles and then more acrylic white splodged on. I let it dry a while and then added more ink and paint and left it overnight. I stamped dylusion circles as a border and then a mix of Paper Artsy circular flower images.

I used a black Posca pen to journal about how I feel around the images and then doodled more circles using aqua markers.
I had taken and posted the original photos with my phone but the quality was really poor so I took photos again. Detail of textures.

I have been trying out patterns for mum's quilt and I like this idea but want to tweak it. It's from the Elizabeth Hartman Practical Guide to Patchwork.

7 May 2013

claiming my blog

<a href="http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/5368867/?claim=9d6463pc9a6">Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

As this is a random post I thought I would add a picture of our five last week back together for  first time in 16 months as eldest daughter was back from Shanghai for a visit.

13 April 2013

Missing for a while

Blocks for Scrappy Trip finished and now it needs a border as not quite wide enough but I don't have enough material
for 6 more blocks, finished block size is 14 inches a 7 x 7 squares.

Yes I've been away and my explanation plus some suitably random photographs follows.
It's been ages since I last blogged and really it is just because work and family seem to have taken up all my time. For those of you who pop in from time to time the main reason has been mum. Following last year's falls, hip replacement, infection and removal of hip mum went back to hospital in the beginning of March  after 20 weeks with no hip. All was well for a week and then unfortunately she fell in hospital, as her care was not what it should have been, and fractured her femur in the same leg as hip replacement. And now... I don't really know apart from fact she will never walk properly without a zimmer and the next few months are crucial if she is ever to get home and be independent again. I am someone who likes to be in control of their life and it just ain't happening. We are currently trying to get our house ready for sale as whatever happens we need to be nearer than a hour's drive away as I am exhausted with work, hospital visits etc and then a long drive and several times have found myself on the motorway several junctions down from where I should be and not really sure how it happened and that is scary.

I have not had much time to sew or journal but have finished my trip along blocks and now creating a border and I have made some cushions. As I do not have enough material (or the money to buy more) I am thinking of a border along these lines...
The cushions are part of the tidying the house up project
 Envelope backs as not tried zips yet and needed to use walking foot to sew this heavy chenille material.

Luckily I have a wonderful sister who lives at the other end of the country and she came up this week to let me get away for a 5 day break. I brought no craft things and have slept and read and am now ready to go back to work and battle with hospitals etc. I have decided I need to find time to craft and blog as it allows me to escape into my own world.

Fingers crossed I will be back blogging and sewing and thank you to those people that emailed and asked if all was well. It could be a whole lot worse and I am sure life will resolve into new patterns.

What else happened?

In March Lens Guy and I went to Oxford for our oldest son's graduation and this is a very rare photo of us and in smart clothes too.

Doing the proud mother thing.

It was our youngest daughter's birthday this month and she has always complained that because I was working when she was growing up she never got homemade cakes unlike her older siblings who had me at home some of the time. Usual family guilt trip so I decided to make her a cake without any of the proper moulds. It tasted lovely but oldest sone said it looked rude. Can't imagine what he meant.

The houses in my Sibling's Together Quilt I am making through Bee in a Bonnet QAL but I am way behind.
Apologies for long and random posting but was trying to catch up on recent events.

11 February 2013

Messy Textured Journal page

This page is for Lens Guy who puts up with a lot and as I don't do Valentine's this is it and he really is "For Keeps and Forever". It is my entry into the Stampotique Challenge SDC86 Red, Pink and White and the Simon Says Have a Heart Challenge. I am fascinated by creating texture on my art journal pages at the minute so I began with some texture paste through chipboard waste and by splodging a heart shape on the facing page with my finger.
 I then pressed a sheet of corrugated card on top to create ridges (and impatiently waited for it to dry and getting fed up I sprayed some Dylusions inks onto the damp paste). There was also some alphabet stencils under the heart in gesso from a previous use up of waste paint.
As I had been sewing I decided to sew a border onto the page as well. I stuck masking tape down the centre, a tip I picked up from Donna Downey as many of my previous pages have ink incursions from later pages and this helps contain seepage between pages and is hidden once the page is finished.
I then used 3 dylusion heart stamps on the page facing the big heart and as a border round both pages which I highlighted with more watercolour paint in red and pink, ink and white acrylic paint. I then stamped Oh My Deer and Eric (from Stampotique) 3 times onto white tissue paper and glued them onto the page. For two of the images I went in with red and pink watercolours and blended them into the page and the third one I left the stamped images uncoloured and ghost like.
Close up showing stitching, doodles and traces of the alphabet stencil.

Lots of hearts and texture.

Thank you for dropping by.

3 February 2013

Journal Page SDC85 Whatever Makes You Happy

Kaz created the challenge for this week's Stampotique challenge;"We all have our problems in life, but life is short and we should all find something to put a smile on our faces as often as we can. So whether you choose 'happy' as your theme, your word or you use a technique that makes you smile, show me your little bit of HAPPY!"

I did wonder about this as I am normally pretty happy but the last few months have been tough. Then middle son's motivating phrase "Positive Mental Attitude (PMA)" which is a family joke came to mind and the song lyrics "Be happy, don't worry". Lying in my sick bed I had been rereading some old magazines and in August 2012 Craft Stamper; Jaine Drake had an article about using old pieces of chipboard and texture paste as the base for a journal page. As one of my intentions this year is to use up arty and fabric stashes this seemed like a great way to use some of those early purchases like peel offs...
I found some peel offs, chipboard and letters and added them to a gesso base. I then put texture paste on top of these pieces and more gesso followed by some dylusion inks and distress stain.
At this point I was pleased although those large letters don't really keep their appearance with layers and the peel offs were much better. Then it went wrong...
I had an idea about using glossy accents and embossing powder and I hated it. I grabbed some alcohol thinner and rubbed it off (was not set yet) and gessoed over the offending pieces. I then added stamps from a number of Dylusions' sets that I stamped on dictionary pages and card,  journalling and more doodles. It was still a bit lacking in cohesion so I stamped Claudine Hellmuth dots over the whole page. When I was sticking the stamps on the page I used Golden Soft Gel medium (semi gloss) as it was all I had and noticed it made the colour much brighter and reacted with the distress. In the end I used my finger to add gel medium all over the page. I added journalling on waste sprayed paper and finished my page. It does show that if you make a hideous mistake in a journal you just get the gesso out and keep going until you are happy...
I had taken more photos but the gel medium has a slight sheen and the close up pictures did not really work.

2 February 2013

Scrappy Trip Along, Slowly moving on

Six blocks done and I think this will be called the yellow diamond quilt.

Lots of strips cut at 19 inches and pinned by a safety pin in sets of 7. The fabric I am using is made up of my giveaway win from Maureen Cracknell's blog and the Intrepid Thread supplemented with additional colours from my stash. There is another giveaway on Maureen Cracknell's blog if you can get in there by Monday. Yellow is not a colour I would normally use but I love how bright and sunny this is as it slowly grows. 
Due to my inability to count as explained in previous post I am now making blocks with 7 strips at 19 inches. I have decided yellow will the long diagonal and there must also be a solid in each block but that is as planned as it gets.

I have added a darker green to the strips and at present in the set of 6 at the top it looks a little wonky but I hope as it is spread out around quilt, or perhaps grouped together it will work. 
I have finished another block but it was too dark and repetitive too photograph but I do love the infinite possibilities of this block.
In other news mum is still at home waiting hipless and waiting for the new hip and becoming more and more immobile and depressed. She was meant to have the op last week but it nows involves grafting bone onto the area that was cut out due to infection and this will be a long op and they are now worried about heart murmurs. More tests next week and fingers crossed she will have by end of February. I can't believe she first fell and broke this hip on 12 September, it's been a long hard slog for us all. Probably because I have been trying to convince myself that I can manage my demanding job, family life, looking after mum and having some time for me I have come grinding to a halt. I have spent last 8 days in bed with a severe infection and still can't manage more than 3 hours out of bed before exhaustion sets in again. Hopefully I am starting to improve and I really must try and get this work, life, carer, mum, wife balance more sorted.