December 29, 2015

12 Tags for Christmas - December


As the year comes to a close, I'm posting a final tag for 2015 which will link to Tim's monthly tag along with Simon's Monday blog challenge.

I used Tim's four smallish Christmas Collage stamps for the background by stamping on Distress-tinted tissue paper, cutting out various parts and pasting to the tag in a new arrangement.

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An oval was cut from the middle, a photo from Tim's Merriment paper stash pasted behind it then tiny paper-punched oak leaves were tinted, glittered and pasted on.

Perfect Pearls and Stickles were used to embellish the borders along with a tiny bow and some Remant Rubs.

I expect the reason we love vintage (and Christmas) so much is because it takes us back to happier times.

The children here certainly had a different experience from kids growing up today.

And if there was a soundtrack running as you view this tag, it would be John Lennon's song which I believe is more poignant now than when it was written given the turbulent events of this past year:

So this is Christmas, and what have you done
Another year over and a new one just begun

And so this is Christmas, I hope you have fun
The near and the dear ones, the old and the young

A very merry Christmas, and a happy New Year
(let's hope it's a good one, without any fear)

If you'd like to see all of the Christmas tags
I made based on Tim's 12 from 2015, click here.

December 22, 2015

12 Tags for Christmas - November


Unless I get busy, there will only be 11 Tags for Christmas this year because I haven't made one for December yet. This one was inspired by Tim's November tag and his idea of embossing an image stamped on watercolor paper using a stylus.

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The background was made using his emboss-resist technique (one of my favorites) along with some Tissue Tape and Remnant Rubs.

The top-left corner looked a little sparse so I added a bit of diamond bling which I also used in the flower's center.

I used black paint (and a tiny paintbrush) to emphasize the lettering from the background stamp (Christmas Collage by Tim).

If you've missed one through 12 of my Christmas versions of Tim's tags this year, there's a link on the sidebar.

As this will be my last post before December 25, I'm wishing you a very Merry Christmas!

Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace, good will toward men.

December 18, 2015

12 Tags for Christmas - October


Who could forget Tim's tag for October which featured a die-cut Frankenstein face? It was so much fun to see all the variations everyone came up with!

So naturally, my Christmas version of this tag includes a cut-out and assembled Santa along with Tim's Merriment paper and text cut from his Christmas Words stamp.

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I used a vintage pattern found on the net which I've included here in case you'd like to make one. Perhaps a fun project for the kids?

It's a small file so you'll need to resize it in a photo editor if you want to make a larger version.





Santa's big day is only one week away and just two weeks until the new year. My Christmas wish for this year? That time wouldn't pass by so quickly and I'd have more moments to fully savor the delights of the season. It is, afterall, the most wonderful time of the year!

December 15, 2015

12 Tags for Christmas - September


Perhaps one of the most challenging Tim Holtz tags this year was the one for September mainly because it featured an embossed transparency and I don't own the necessary equipment. While that fact is still true, my Christmas spin does feature a transparency that was laid (bowed) over the top of a paper background embellished with texture paste using the Idea-ology Scribbles stencil.

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I attached a stamped image that was cut from vellum to the back of the transparency along with some metallic star confetti then stitched around the edges to secure it to the tag. It looks pretty cool in person (though hard to photograph) and gives the appearance that the angel is hovering over clouds.

A Christmas Remant Rub was attached to the front of the transparency and a bit of Broken China Distress was used to tint the edges of the paste.

December 09, 2015

12 Tags for Christmas - August


Tim's August tag this year featured a die-cut text background and a Found Relative collage. My Christmas version features a background that was stamped with text and I used an image from his Merriment paper stash.

I was happy to use some vintage postage, Correspondence remnant rubs and Chit-Chat stickers for embellishment. It's hard to believe that five cents was all it took to mail a Christmas card from 1963-1968.


Since the paper tones were rather muted I used a little Fired Brick Distress Ink to emphasize the costumes.

For me, this tag's best features are the soft matte paper textures and the way the photo was cropped to fit the tag.

I'm linking to Simon's Monday blog challenge where this week's theme is (no surprise) Holly Jolly Stamping.

December 06, 2015

12 Tags for Christmas - July


I can't pick a favorite from my 12 Tags for Christmas series (inspired by Tim's monthly tags for 2015) since I haven't made a December version yet but this tag, for the month of July, is a top contender.

Why? I would never in a million years have combined Santa images from three of his Christmas collage stamps in this way but did so to mimic the theme from July which featured three watercolored blueprint stamps. And I think the result is pretty awesome (if I do say so myself ☺).

Using a page from his Merriment paper for a background, the stamped images were embossed and tinted. The number 25 is a cut-out from that same paper line and the cents symbol was covered up with an Ideaology star tinted with alcohol ink (click to see a close-up). 
When it comes to creating flesh tones, I find that a combination of red, yellow and violet works pretty well. And since my watercolor paper is a bit on the heavy side, stitching the images to the tag is a good way to secure them and adds another level of interest.

I can't wait to attach it to a package for my great-nephew who happens to be the biggest Santa fan in the family this year.

December 03, 2015

12 Tags for Christmas - June

Remember that iced coffee to-go cup on a plaid background that Tim made for the June tag this year? It was really fun, complete with a domed lid, straw and a place to put a gift card. What an imagination!


My Christmas version of that tag features another attempt at plaid but the color was off so I ran it under water (thank goodness tags are tough) and the plaid striping is now perhaps too subtle.

My ornament is just paper pasted on a scrap of 300 lb. watercolor paper (think thick) and the branch pattern was also cut from store-bought printed paper that I covered with Glossy Accents.

I used a strip of burlap ribbon to stamp my sentiment (Tim's Christmas Words) and I added bling with stars, Stickles, and a thin silver ribbon.

If you'd like to see the detail just click on this photo to enlarge it for a close-up view.

December 02, 2015

12 Tags for Christmas - May


Adding texture with burlap and paste, learning how to tint photos with ink, then telling a story with ephemera and text--that's what Tim's tag for May was all about and it was one of my favorites this year.

My holiday version features a Found Relative photo (Occassions), Remnant Rub text, the Schoolhouse stencil and some Idea-ology vellum ephemera. The holly was stamped, cut-out and glitter-fied and I'll tell you about the happy-accident that became the frame.

The photo was thick as it had previously been mounted on heavy cardstock (an abandoned idea) and I didn't like how high it sat on the burlap. To fill in the gap, I applied a black line of 3-D Scribbles around the edge then used a toothpick to poke bumps in it (a lesser-known Distress technique ☺).

After it dried, I dotted red glitter glue over the top leaving spaces for the black to show through. (To see the detail, click the photo to enlarge it.)

I'm linking this tag to Simon's Monday blog challenge where this week's theme is Gentlemen. I can't think of a more "gentle man" than Santa!

December 01, 2015

12 Tags for Christmas - April


The emphasis for Tim's April tag this year was on using a watercolor technique along with a clever way to assemble a word band insert using kraft paper.

My holiday version features a poinsettia stamp by Penny Black and I didn't use a die-cut for the text-- it was stamped and embossed instead (Tim's Christmas Words).

And it just wouldn't be as Christmas-y without some bling so I applied gold Stickles on the border and used black 3-D Scribbles for accent.

I really like this one--it's easy to see why using watercolor with stamps has become so popular and starting with a spritzed background really elevates the technique.

In case you don't know about my 12 Tags for Christmas series, this post will fill you in on the why and what for's.

November 30, 2015

12 Tags for Christmas - March


This is my holiday version of the March tag from the Tim Holtz 12 Tags of 2015 series where he demonstrated an excellent technique for using gold embossing powder over wet texture paste (and is the only common element here).

Limited in my Christmas stamp choices (remember process versus product), I tried to mask this Tim Holtz collage stamp on a scrapbook paper background which was tinted with Worn Lipstick Distress ink and an aqua Gelly Roll pen.

Can you tell I missed? The outline on the top and left edges of the stamp were filled in with black lines to remedy my poor masking skills.

If you wonder about my color choices I wanted to try using less traditional holiday colors. In hindsight, silver versus gold embossing might have looked better with this scheme.

Just a reminder, you can preview all my 12 Tags for Christmas by using the link on the sidebar.

12 Tags for Christmas - February


As promised in my last post, I'll be sharing holiday versions of Tim’s monthly tags for 2015 and today features the February tag which focused on creating a collage with ephemera.

I used Distress Stickles since they are less sparkly than regular Stickles and compliment the well-worn look of this collage technique. The star cut-outs are from his Correspondence paper.

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Look closely, and you see red paint (applied with a tiny paint brush) that highlight the bric-a-brac on the Industrious Sticker frame.

In closing, I must say I was surprised and pleased to receive comments on my first tag in this series, thank you--I appreciate your support!

November 27, 2015

12 Tags for Christmas - January

I used some time-off during the last two weeks of November to make holiday versions of Tim’s monthly tags for 2015 which I'll use to embellish my Christmas gifts this year.

It was a great excuse to break out the glitter, get in the spirit of the season, reminisce over each month’s theme and give some great techniques another try.

While I might have wished for an unlimited craft stash, instead I embraced the process and pleasure of creating and just used what I had on-hand.

To share my experience and some new discoveries, I’ll be posting the rest of them over the next few days and perhaps they'll inspire and motivate your own holiday crafting this year.

And so, I begin with January which featured letters and numbers:



Do you remember the pre-cut grunge board parts and pieces Tim designed before his partnership with Sizzix? Well that’s what I used to make the letters spelling TWENTY. Just painted, they looked kind of blah until I outlined them and added some glitter.

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The big number 5 was hand-drawn, cut-out and filled with Crackle Accents.

My favorite technique/design element on this tag is the border.

Made with an outline of black ink, it was dotted over with white Scribbles spacing the dots just far enough apart to give it a checkered appearance.

Well, I hope you’ll return for the rest of my Christmas tag postings in the coming days and if you'd like to see a preview there's a link to them on the sidebar.

November 10, 2015

Choose Joy


I made this card for a teacher who inspired me with a quote recently read in class (just the right words for the way I was feeling that day) and I'm linking it to Jennifer McGuire's Share Handmade Kindness challenge post.

Made with Wallflower vellum, stamped fabric using a hand-carved butterfly and a background stamp by Inkadinkado, it was embellished with machine stitching and Ranger's Liquid Pearls. The text is a Remnant Rub mounted onto a painted Grungeboard scrap.

On the inside, I typed the following quote:

"Choose joy. Then cherish and savor it.

Joy is not a fleeting emotion based on outward circumstances, a transitory feeling of the moment, a reaction to the scenery around you. It comes from within your heart like the waterfall that rushes out the side of a mountain. Joy is a runoff from the wellspring within you. And sometimes it is a delightful, surprising contrast to the scenery around you.

Embrace joy. Relish it. Even if those around you don't have it right now, you can feel your joy. You don't have to be disrespectful of their feelings, nor do you have to let their lack of joy diminish yours.

You have done your work. You have chosen to open your heart. Now you have your reward.

Cherish joy. It's your treasure. You've found it. You've earned it. It's yours."

-Melody Beattie


I'm also linking this to Simon's Monday blog challenge this week. The theme is Create Something Beginning with the Letter N (I used a needle) and it turns out that stitching is an excellent way to anchor vellum to cardstock. My thanks to the inspiration provided by Andrea Ockey Parr which gave me the idea to use fabric on my card.

November 08, 2015

Better


This Found Relative seems wise beyond her years and the hand-written text kept running through my head as I worked on this tag.

The background was stained with Tumbled Glass then collaged with fussy-cut Wallflower vellum and embellished with some texture (stencil by Crafter's Workshop) and crackle mediums and tinted with gel pens and oil pastels.

November 06, 2015

Braves

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Even though it's made entirely of Tim Holtz products, my entry for this year's November tag departs a great deal from Tim's inspiration piece.

At least it has an Autumn/Thanksgiving-ish theme?

All I know is I wanted to use the photo from the Occasions Found Relatives of children dressed up as Indian braves.

You may recognize the feather from the Wallflower paper stash which I embossed with a stylus to bring out the individual feather strands.

The nest/eggs background piece is also from Wallflower which I delaminated a bit by sanding the back to get it as thin as possible.


The background is a textured page from the Destinations paper stash and I added a few more darks with Distress Ink (like the shadows at the boys' feet). I topped it off with some machine stitching and Remnant Rubs and called it complete.

November 04, 2015

Snow Birds


Many birds migrate to the Arizona desert during the winter months and we call the humans that come here "Snow Birds."

Their presence is keenly felt right now--it's a big change from the slow quiet pace of summer and is my inspiration for making this tag.

I used a stencil (Stampendous) to create the trees which were covered with Crackle Accents (Ranger Ink) to give the illusion of bark.

It's been my experience that when you use this product on paper it's best not to use a liquid over the cracks for emphasis because the product may peel-off. So I used oil pastels instead.

The birds are from a stamp called Birds on a Wire by Tim Holtz and I used a gel pen to ink them individually before placement.

A bit of white from a Souffle Gelly Roll pen was used to accent the branches with snow.


I'm linking my tag to Simon's Monday blog challenge--
this week's theme is So Glossy.

October 27, 2015

Life Mind


This month I worked through a blog challenge presented by A Vintage Journey where participants were asked to incorporate Tim Holtz techniques, style and/or products into their art journals.

Using the large format Dylusions journal, my first page was completed a few weeks ago and features a stamp from Tim's Flower Garden stamp set. It coincides with an online course I just completed on the subject of Mindfulness.

For the second page, I used only Tim Holtz stamps and if you don't count the Remnant Rubs text and some paint, I stayed true to my goal. I'll admit that the subject matter might have been a bit more interesting if my stash were larger but it was great fun just working with what I had.

And so, I'm also linking this post to Simon's Monday blog challenge--this week's theme is Throwback where you make something from a previous challenge. I picked the first challenge from July, 2013 called A Little Stamping which is what gave me the idea to use only stamping on my journal page.

To see more detail as you browse my images you can click on them to open the larger, lightbox view.


Journal Page No. 1




Journal Page No. 2


October 23, 2015

Birds


When I was a kid, there weren't many horror movies compared to today and they were pretty harmless by comparison. But I'll never forget one that really scared me and gave my sister nightmares--it was The Birds by Alfred Hitchcock.

So I made this tag for Simon's Monday blog challenge where this week's theme is Monster Mash. I used Distress inks and two stamps by Tim Holtz (the large bird and filmstrip) and one by Penny Black (Winter Ledge). The house was an image transfer of the school building from the movie and I hand-lettered the text.


October 18, 2015

Memento Mori


I can't recall how I recently came across this image but it resonated with me because, at the time, my back was killing me from overdoing it during a new yoga class. And I suppose, given it's almost Halloween, I thought it would be fun to alter it somehow while channeling my inner pain.

I was curious about the symbolism so I Googled the text and discovered that it's Latin for a phrase in the Bible (Romans 5:12) and is an example of Memento Mori (a medieval Latin theory) which in art, is artistic or symbolic reminders of mortality.

As I worked to cut-out the image I admired the skill of the illustrator and wondered what he may have created if modern materials (that we take for granted) were available to him. Perhaps the Dark Ages wouldn't have been so dark but still there's much beauty in just using pen and ink.

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It was pasted on to scrapbook paper and tinted a bit to provide some contrast. To bring out the holiday theme I used black Stickles.

My back is now much improved and I will keep this image in my head as a reminder not to over do it in future exercise classes!

I'm linking to Our Creative Corner where this month's challenge is Halloween Horror.

October 14, 2015

Mums


My entry for Simon's Monday blog challenge this week features a Tim Holtz Flower Garden stamp and watercolors.



I began by stamping the mums on watercolor paper with clear ink then used clear powder to emboss them.

Next I dropped in juicy yellow and orange watercolor, let it dry and then used a damp tissue to wipe it off the embossed lines.

I drew the likes of a basket and handle with my very handy Perfect Pearls pen, embossed with clear powder and filled them in with a brownish mix of watercolor.

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I used polka-dot washi tape to fill-in the basket around the flowers by pressing the tape down then cutting around the edges. A sharp blade and gentle pressure does the trick and prevents cutting into the background.

Then I masked the basket, flowers and handles so I could stamp the upper part of the tag with text (Heidi Swapp) using archival ink and tinted it with blue-green and magenta watercolor.

Final embellishments included hand-written text using a Gelly Roll pen, tacking on a bow and distressing the edges of the tag with walnut ink.


This becomes Tag Number 136 which I'll add to my collection at manilaguerilla.blogspot.com. But who's counting?

October 08, 2015

Tricksters


My take on Tim's tag #10 for 2015 includes a found relative photo from the Occasions set and features children in some pretty terrific Halloween costumes.

The photo's orientation is landscape so it was cut in half and layered to fit on my tag.

The creepy castle was cut from a page in Tim's Destinations paper stash and the moon behind trees is a scrapbook page found at a garage sale (maker unknown).

I trimmed it with green, purple and black Stickles and the letters were cut from Tim's big chit-chat stickers.

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As near as I can tell, there are 13 children in this photo and starting with the back-row (from left to right) there's a ghost, a kid with a mask that has Mickey Mouse type ears, a fancy lady, a cat, a witch, a colonel, a skeleton, a pumpkin ghoul, a scarecrow, a nurse, Little Bo Peep, and a couple of clowns.

What a priceless moment in time and what fun they must have had!

September 24, 2015

Sparkle

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The most difficult stamp I have ever worked with (and also the most expensive) is this image by Lynne Perella for Paper Artsy. I don't know why it's not available in the US so I had to order it from the UK and the shipping added a greal deal to the cost.

It has a tremendous amount of detail and is not deeply etched so it's a bit of a struggle to get an impression that's satisfactory.

This time I used a really bizarre inking method that worked rather well. Surprise, surprise.

I applied thick watercolor using a brush and let it dry then stamped over that layer with black dye ink. Then I lightly spritzed it with water and stamped onto my paper surface.


The paper border was made with one of the most useful stamps I own and if I had to pick a favorite from my collection this would be it because it's so versatile. It's from Tim Holtz and is part of the Visual Artistry Lost and Found stamp set.


The text is Idea-ology chit-chat and the dots are Ranger Liquid Pearls.

I made this card for my bestie Thelma who's got a milestone birthday on the horizon and I'm linking to Simon's Monday blog challenge where this week's theme is use a stamp.

I must give a special shout-out to all the Design Team members who really rocked their creations this week. It was very inspiring!

September 19, 2015

Artvue

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I'm still rather confused as to what constitutes a piece of "mail art." According to Wiki, it's centered on sending small works through the postal service and that at it's core, it's about interpersonal communication, exchange and the creation of a virtual community of participants. Huh?

I thought it was just about using postal ephemera in collages!

So, while I work on my understanding of this art form, I'll share my latest attempt (interpersonal communication) with my blog readers (virtual community). Gee, maybe this is mail art after all?


Beginning with a virgin postcard (never been mailed), I used an image transfer technique to add the newpaper print. I used a distressed Idea-ology frame sticker and stamped a bird on tinted watercolor paper for the center.


The red and green postage stamps are real, the cat stamp is homemade. The address label is from the Tim Holtz Correspondence stamp set. I applied it to paper then used a typewriter to fill in the address before pasting it on. The postmark in the top left corner and the words Par Avion are also from this set.

With a bit more stamping, tinting, dotting and a strip of washi tape (white strip near the center), I considered it complete.

Now all I have to do is mail it!