artfully distressed

pictures of what I create and the places, people and ideas which inspire my art.

Wednesday, 29 February 2012


I am a WOYWW newbie but I have been a fan of 'Whats on Your Work Desk Wednesday' for a long time, well before I started my own blog, and I thought this week I would be brave enough to join in. Hop over to Julia's blog to join in too or just to have a nosy at some other desks.

This is the desk in my craft room

I have taken some time out from design team work for the last couple of days and have been indulging myself playing with my sewing machine. I am all ready to try out some felting next so the rather boring looking grey felt will (hopefully, if it works) be coloured with sprays and then I am going to add some felted flowers and finish with free machine embroidery over the flowers and background. Or at least that's the idea! Perhaps I can share the results next week...

Well that wasn't terribly exciting so here is a couple of pics of my shelves too

Some class projects on display there from LB Crafts, Artsycrafts and classes with Kay from Indigo Blu. The printers tray in the bottom pic holds all sorts of treasures many of which are metal detecting finds which I snaffled from my other half. It also holds the metal stamps that my friend Louise got me from Portabello Road. Room for lots more treasures yet.

Finally this isn't on my craft desk it's actually in what is supposed to be the dining room. I have temporarily taken over the space so I can leave my sewing machine out. I am just a beginner when it comes to textiles and last night fitted the walking foot on my Janome for the first time so that I could practise quilting.

Ta dah!

Okay, so it's easy when you know how but I didn't! Resorted to Google as I had no instructions with the foot. This is what I will be quilting when I am brave enough...

The blocks are not perfectly lined up but I made this over 4 years ago and it was my first ever attempt at patchwork so I can forgive that. This must get my record for length of time as an unfinished project but that won't be the case for much longer. I just love the bright colours. It's based on a design in 'Quick, Colourful Quilts' (edited by Rosemary Wilkinson).

Hope you enjoyed your visit.

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Scrapbooking layouts with WOW embossing powders and Tim Holtz masks

I decided to create scrapbook pages for my WOW submission... check out my post on the 22nd Feb over on the WOW design team blog for more details on these first two pages which I made using their great range of fluorescent embossing powders.


For this next page I decided to go vintage and try something different using my Tim Holtz masks and metallic embossing powders.

To achieve this effect place the mask on to the paper (mine is Papermania kraft paper) and use a sponge dabber to apply embossing ink around the mask.

Then apply your chosen embossing powder and heat set. I used metallic copper, metallic brass and metallic platinum. To make the letters of the title stand out more I went over this area with Vintage Photo distress ink. To finish the page I layered my photo onto sheet music and patterned paper and added ribbon, snap fasteners and tissue tape to complete the look.

Here is a little pic of my samples on display at the trade show. I couldn't make it to see them in person this time but a colleague on the design team shared this... (sorry about the quality - copied from facebook)... 

Finally, (and I know these aren't scrapbooking layouts), check out these cool gift tags I made using the fluorescent powders and the Gratitude stamp set.

Stitches and Create and Craft - Indigo Blu design team samples

I have had a busy time recently finishing design team samples for Indigo Blu and WOW - firstly, in the run up to the NEC show, then for my individual blog post for WOW (22nd Feb) and then samples for last sunday's Indigo Blu show on Create and Craft.

Here are a few pics of my Indigo Blu samples...

'Love to Create Canvas' - stamps used Sarah's choiceYorkshire Evening Post, Discover Your Passion, Crackleglaze background

Monday, 20 February 2012

Altered Alice - Hearts challenge

I'm having such fun creating an entry each month for The Altered Alice challenge. If you love all things Alice In Wonderland themed then check out the blog for some great inspiration and why not have a go yourself!

This months theme is Hearts. I love using my IndigoBlu stamps for these challenges. This month I decided to take all the things which are constantly on my workdesk for making design team samples and create something just for fun with them. I've used IndigoBlu FlitterGlu and Mega-flake and my WOW embossing powders as well as a cuttlebug embossing folder. I couldn't live without my cuttlebug, (doesn't stop me wanting a Vagabond too though obviously)!

Here is my entry:

I've used the rabbit stamp from the Alice II plate by IndigoBlu. I stamped it with embossing ink and then carefully poured WOW Ebony embossing powder where I wanted it on the image avoiding the centre area where the hearts are. I tapped off the excess powder and poured WOW Apple Red embossing powder into the centre area and heated. I then used my WOW embossing pen to go over the lines in the centre which needed to be black and added another layer of Ebony embossing powder. I stamped 'LOVE' which is also on the Alice II plate and perfectly sized for the banner and embossed this with Apple Red powder. (You have a choice of Love, Art or Happy Birthday which all fit the space - great idea!).  

I embossed a piece of white card using the cuttlebug hearts embossing folder and gently rubbed Barn Door distress ink over the top. After cutting out the stamped image I placed this in the centre. I then covered a small piece of card using FlitterGlu and applied 'Chariot of Fire' Mega-flake which is the most amazing brilliant gold colour. I punched out lots of small hearts and stuck these on using foam pads to give dimension, mounted this finished piece onto a black card and applied double sided tape in two widths at the top and bottom and more Mega-flake over the top.

I know it's past the date now but this would make a perfect Valentines card don't you think?

Saturday, 11 February 2012

Winter wedding

WOW, what a beautiful bright, clear day for Oonagh's wedding and what a lovely ceremony! Debbie and I got the flowers finished last night after spending hours looking for some decent ivory roses. You have no idea how hard that was in the run up to valentines day, thank goodness for Sainsburys! Although a professional florist had the honour of making the bride's flowers, bridesmaids' and groom's button hole we made a further 11 button holes and 3 corsages. Any florists out there please don't examine too closely - we are only amateurs! - but I think we did pretty good thanks to Debbie's design skills...

Of course we had a special helper, Debbie's puppy Jasper,

Friday, 10 February 2012

Travel, snow, design team samples and wedding flowers...

I went up north to my brother and sister-in laws last week. It was really great to see them. I was a bit of a tourist in blackpool and had to take a pictuire of the tower as we walked past. Thankfully I got home on the train before the snow hit.

It's been a busy couple of weeks really - not much time for crafting but plenty of time for thinking about all those projects I will do when I have got time... had a lovely shopping trip on Tuesday to Wisteria Patchwork near Swinderby and got a few fabrics for some ongoing patchwork projects. There is no excuse now not to finish them. Watch this space...

We have just had some fresh snow last night. The roads are not too bad but the garden looked really pretty this morning.

I thought I would just post some pics of the Indigo Blu design team samples which I made prior to the Create and Craft show on sunday 29th. I managed to watch the show and it was great fun to see some of my samples being held up by the presenter. I thought Kay did some fab demos as well.

Here's a few of the cards I made - all the samples had to use Flitter glu and flake somewhere on them

This was the sample I made for my last design team submission using WOW embossing powders. The theme was a 'manly' Valentines card.

Right, that's all from me for now. I am going to jump on the bus into town. I'm helping to pick flowers to make 10 button holes and 3 corsages for my friend's wedding tomorrow. Never made wedding flowers before - fortunately the design bit is not up to me, my talented friend Debbie will be in charge and I am just the excited assistant. Wish me luck!