Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Timeless Stamps by Donna Ratcliff

hello fellow crafters!

We've had some exciting news at Inkoid HQ. Our chief Inkoid Donna Ratcliff has launched her own beautiful range of stamps! Donna loves drawing and is brilliant at it isn't she? She kept that under her hat! 😉But everyone knows how fabulous she is now! 😊 It was so wonderful to see her on the telly launching them with her crafty partner in crime, Sheena!

This Timeless collection is absolutely perfect for lots of occasions. This range is comprised of four stunning images and two sets of sentiments. They are great for decoupage ( I'm not obsessed at all... oh who am I kidding?? of course I am! lol ) and all sorts of techniques, so the possibilities are endless.

So here is what I made for Donna.....As you can they team up excellently with some of Sheena's stamps that you might already have. On this card the ivy leaves and the flowers are decoupaged and I really wanted the hour glass to look like glass. I will reveal how in other post. 😃

Decoupaged roses and foil highlights on this one.

Decoupaged butterflies to add depth..

For this creation I decoupaged the roses and leaves. Are you sensing a theme yet? 😉 This was combined with Sheena's Day of the Dead music folder.

I really wanted to also showcase what wonderful sentiments you get in this collection and how well they can work together, so I made a card mainly using those with added cogs to suit the theme from the Time Traveller range. 

And finally, this card was designed to show you how even if you use a more subtle colour palette, and only Distress Inks, you can still create a lovely, effective card. The sentiments are also great for making a background.

We knew everyone would love this collection as much as we do and the reception has been wonderful. We are also so pleased for and proud of Donna... I get the may not be too much time before we see something else from the fabulously talented lady, that is our chief  Inkoid. 😊

Crafty hugs

Alchemy Tutorials - Mixed media

Will update soon. :)

Monday, 22 May 2017

Alchemy Tutorials - Cards

Hello lovely crafty peeps!

I hope you are all well out there! What strange weather it has been here lately! Can't seem to make it's mind up! Looks like sunnier days are on the way again though, so, something to look forward too. As I type I'm actually getting repeatedly pawed by a cat who thinks it's rude that I'm typing whilst she is sat on my knee. Obviously, it hasn't registered that I started doing this before she got on my

So, recently you saw the launch of Sheena's new collection, Alchemy! I love these stamps and dies so much.... oh that's it.. cat is gone... got the hump...  ðŸ˜œI'll make it up to her later 💗 (Oooh, look, I can now do emojis- life is complete 😄)

DI = Distress Ink
PP = Pebeo paint.

Anyhew, this is how I made some of the cards. This was my Alchemist's Dream card.

And to create the back ground for this, I took the Create a Flower, Dissolving Planets stencil and put it through my gemini machine to emboss a square of white card.  I coloured it with DI and then re-positioned the stencil back over the top,  so I could then go over the raised bits with darker DI ink. I wanted it to look like a chemical soup and thought this would be perfect. 

Next I sponged Pebeo liquid foil glue around the edges, (kitchen sponge with holes torn out for texture). When dry I applied gold foil. I wanted it to look like gold bubbling around the edge. I then stamped rings in the circles with a gold Memento ink., this was done with the Grunge band stamps. 

I don't have any photos of the bottles but... this is what I did..

Die cut and stamped them. Painted them with watered down Pebeo paint. You can then stamp back over with Stazon carefully, if you feel the image has faded too much underneath. I added white paint highlights to the bottles for shine. Then to emboss!.. I did two layers of clear, one third layer of clear with coloured glitter sprinkled into it, to match the painted colour of each bottle and then another fourth layer over the top. I just discovered this from playing and love the effect. The glitter will hover suspended and looks like it is really floating in the bottle and four layers should give you a smooth glass finish. You can't do one or two, it will look like orange peel instead. 

Crafty Tip: Curve your bottles slightly before you clear emboss else they will crack, unless you want that, if not you will have to add another layer to smooth them again. 

Now to the All Seeing Eye..

This was one of the cards I created to represent the spiritual side of Alchemy and if you have Sheena's angel wing stamp set, it works great with this collection. The red background is DI with faux bleaching. 

I have a Verity Rose embossing folder from Crafter's Companion that was perfect to combine with this... heavenly rays! I embossed a piece of white card, painted it with PP, then sponged white pearl PP on to it for clouds. 

Kept sponging until they became more subtle. I then coloured the rays with gold and gold glitter PP. 

Stamped the eye and used Aquablend pencils to colour it, also went over with watered down gold pearl PP, to make it shimmer. Added foil highlights around the edge of the triangle and to the rays. The wings were heat embossed with WOW white powder puff. Love this, really gives you texture. 

Stamped the chosen sentiment on to some card..

Shaped it into a scroll by repeatedly sweeping the thin end of a paint brush underneath and curving it. Then folded back on itself. 

This is the elemental cross, created by using the eye as a template. I stamped out the eye and then used it to make these triangles. 

Coloured them with DI and then stamped the elements. The disc was coloured the same way as the eye above and stamped with gold embossing powder.

The background was created by splashing PP on to a square of white card (see my Temptingly Tropical tutorial for how to do this.) Sentiments were stamped.  Gold foil was applied around the edge as on the Alchemists Dream card above. 

Crafty tip, as a guide I glued a circle to the background, measured and placed in the middle. then I knew I could build my cross from this and it would be even. The disc then went over the top.

Palmistry hand..

Took some paper, drew a square on it and roughly tore along the line. Screwed it up to crumple it.

Coloured with DI and then layered on to a Kraft card and gilding wax background. I wanted it to look like lined hands. splashed it with liquid foil glue, added gold foil when dry.

Used Sheena's recently launched Word stamps to create a background, thought the Life word would be perfect... life line... stamped it with Versa Mark as it resists the DI, leaving a ghostly image. 

Magnifying glass...

I cut out the magnifying glass in black card and also in white. The frame in black was then embossed with gold, and I applied gilding wax and polished. I decided it would be a good idea to stamp the words 'Discover secrets' into the glass section. I did faux bleaching on it to match the background and then clear embossed it to look like glass. This is an easy way of making it look realistic. 

Once on the card I also added foil highlights for extra shine. Took a picture whilst the glue was still wet, so you could see where it was applied. 

The Star of David... the balance achieved..

I used the triangle template created from the All Seeing Eye again to make the Star of David. I also used the hexagonal die that came with a previous Crafter's Inspiration magazine. It fit the eye perfectly (largest die), I could then position it correctly to form six even points and trim the excess. 

So then I had this...

The knowledge is to be found in books....

For this background I tore a rough edge round a square of white Sheena card and then used DI to colour. I decided to use a variety of words from the collection, to signify that the knowledge was coming to life.  They were stamped with different shades of Memento ink. The top point of the eye was measured to the centre and the eye was stamped first, this meant I knew where the words would fit. 

Crafty tip:  Rock-a-blocks are amazing! If you haven't got them yet, get them, you need them in your life! I wouldn't be without mine. I love them and one of the great things about them is the guidelines on them for straight stamping... but what I also do, with something like this is have a glass measuring/cutting mat underneath. I put a small piece of doubled side tape on the mat in the middle to anchor the panel I want to work on. This also works very well for stamping sentiments on all four corners, as in the Star of David card above. It means you can line it up, stamp the words, carefully twizzle it (because you are not pressing down on the double sided tape, it's just lightly tacking it down) and line up the next corner in the same squared off spot. It means you can use your Rock-a-block guidelines, in combination with the lines on the mat, so you know that the distant on each corner will be the same. Hope that makes sense!! And as you will understand it was a useful method for creating the background above, because it meant they were on the same line either side and thus level. 

Hope you've enjoyed this inside knowledge! See what I did there! 😉I shall blog in another post about the mixed media projects... I'm off now to cuddle a cat...  ðŸ˜ because I'm such a

T.T.F. N


Saturday, 13 May 2017

Pansies for Sara

Hello again,

I continued to be amazed.. I sit here typing my little blog, never knowing who will find it but it appears I am travelling to places I may never get to see in real life (sadly).  So hello to you all out there, I am so happy to have you joining me. :D It really means so much to me.. <3 so I guess my waffling isn't that bad after all! lol.. there is hope for me! ;)

Just a quick little post to share some recent makes with you. The Inkoids had the honour of being asked to make some samples for Sara Davies to take to the HSN shows in America.  Sara also took our Create a Flower samples with her too but sadly I missed that show, due to having to work! I need to win the lottery, lol..  Sara was amazing as always. I love watching her shows. Anyhew, I was home in time to catch the Country Cottage collection (America) and was able to see the samples made by the team. It was super exciting to see them. I always find it a little surreal that we make samples and then get to see them Hochanda when launched... and now seeing them in America too. Well someone pinch me because I must be dreaming!

So for Sara, I created some pansy cards. I do love pansies, they are one of my very favourite flowers, always so cheery.

I wanted to show how you can really create a over flowing basket of pansies or just have a few which look equally as nice, the choice is yours. I coloured them with Aquablend pencils.

As you can see, they work well teamed with Sheena's ivy die and stamp. For this one, I created a Pebeo paint background to compliment the colour of the flowers. 

So I hope you have enjoyed seeing these. I really loved making them. 



Sunday, 30 April 2017

Alchemy with Sheena Douglass

Hello lovely peeps!

I hope you are all well! I've been so busy lately but with very good reason, been creating lots of lovely new things with Sheena's amazing new collection! I will catch up with the promised tutorials for the previous collections soon.

So, Alchemy is here!!! A new collection of Perfect Partners stamps and dies. The Inkoids have been creating magic and experimenting with these. We know you will love these too!

I've created cards and various home decor pieces. It's a fascinating subject and you get to play with lots of wonderful things. They also work perfectly with some of Sheena's other stamps and dies. How fab is that? Mix it up!

So here is what I have created. Cards...

I called this one 'Alchemist's Dream'.. and what do they dream of? Well potions of course and the creation of gold!! I also used the Dissolving Planets stencil from the Create a Flower collection as it made a perfect background for chemical soup.

We often think of alchemy as the desire to turn base metal into gold but it is also a metaphor for the spiritual growth of the soul, its transmutation in gold, a state of perfection. Sheena's angel wings work brilliantly with this to represent the ascension of the soul. The golden rays from the sun were created using a Crafter's Companion embossing folder (Verity Rose), painted with Pebeo paints. 

This just had to be done. The Star of David symbolises the balance of knowledge, when everything comes together perfectly. I was able to design this using the pyramid as a template...will show you how in another post. 

I gave an extra nod to Leonardo da Vinci by using the ink splodge stamps from the Christmas Notes stamp set. The centre circle of the magnifying glass was stamped with the words, thought these sentiments would work well this way and then it was clear embossed with powder to make it look like glass. 

For this card I wanted the words to come to life out of the book, so I had them floating in the ethers, and I combined the lady with the eye to suggest that she is growing and gaining knowledge from the books she is reading.

With this one I decided to create an elemental cross with the disc in the centre. The background was created with Pebeo paints and I sponged on Gilding paste around the edge and applied gold foil after it was dry. 

Love this palmistry hand. I decided for the background to crumple some paper, so it would look like the creases and lines in a hand

These scales are brilliant! I cut them out with black card, gold embossed and then applied gilding wax with foil highlights. This makes them look like metal. 

I thought the Professor would be perfect on a notebook, again used the Verity Rose embossing folder as a background for Sheena's fantastic stamp and painted in with Pebeo.

As soon as I saw the All Seeing Eye, I knew I had to create an actual pyramid and make it gold of course!! Loved playing with this.

I was lucky enough to find this frame for sale in a local shop and I just knew, as soon as I saw it, it would be perfect for a project with the Alchemy collection. The Eye would look great and compliment this shape, the eye watching over it all.

And so... to the canvas. This one is bigger than any previous canvas I've made but it needed to be to do what I wanted and get all the bits in. I really wanted to set a scene with this and show how everything works well together and also with other Sheena collections. As you can see, I combined it with some elements of Time Traveller and Day of the Dead. Alchemy is very much about symbolism, so I wanted to convey that.

This is the meaning behind my thinking... prepare to be scared!!! lol

Overall, I wanted the composition to tell you many things. The plaster is coming off the walls, now exposing most of the brick. The cellar window above must have cracked and the ivy is now creeping through and down the walls into the lab. On one level, this indicates how obsessed the Alchemist is with his experiments that the everyday things around him are not taken care of but the ivy also represents something else, which I will explain later. 

The All Seeing Eye is watching over everything.

The keys represent the keys to knowledge, some are hung up high on the wall, to signify the alchemists has gained some higher knowledge. If you look to the lower right you will also see another key partially hidden. This represents something he is still studying and has to gain knowledge of.

The hour glass is the time it takes to learn.

The palm signifies that his fate is in his hands.

I used the skull as a symbol for the search for immortality, linked to the Philosopher's Stone, which is used to create gold and the elixir of life.

Ivy represents determination, survival and the spiritual struggle of the soul. It has the ability to recover after set backs, proving it's strength. Everything an alchemist would need! 

The symbols on the bottles are chemical. The green bottle in the centre has the symbol of verdigris, had to be done! 

I also added crystals and scattered them about, here you can see Emerald, Carnelian, Amethyst and Lapis with Pyrite. 

Old images of Alchemical lists were added to the canvas. Be careful not to use modern images. These are very old, from the 1600 and 1700's so well out of copy right and won't get you in trouble, they are free to use and in the public domain. These added to the feeling of him collecting information and knowledge.  

He's been able to create a tincture of gold but not actual gold yet! His experiments continue!

So, that is a peek inside my head! How scary was that?? lol... Don't stay in there too long, you will go crafting crazy!!

I will be back with another post about how I made these projects in the not too distant future! So stay tuned! :) 

T.T.F.N lovely peeps!


Friday, 28 April 2017

Temptingly Tropical Tutorials

Hello lovely crafters!

So, here I am finally updating this page with the tutorial for the gorgeous Temptingly Tropical stamps from Sheena. Better late than never right?... will try not to waffle too much, got a lot of blogging to catch up on! lol... I say that now..... apologies if I fail!... doing it already....sigh, there's no hope!!

Before I begin, for those who may not know DI = Distress ink and SC= Sheena Card.

The hummingbird card, I love these little critters!

So I stamped the hummingbird several times so I could decoupage...

Took an 8" card and mounted a layer of Kraft card on to it, the edges coloured with gilding wax, two shades mixed to create depth. The next panel to layer was this, used the leaf stencils from the Create a Flower collection. Lighter DI underneath, darker over the top with the patterned leaf.

Smaller panel for the centre, stenciled with smaller leaves in the light DI. There was also blue DI for the sky but it doesn't show in photos. 

Then I played around with the arrangement, decided I liked it off set to add more interest. Went on to colour hibiscus flowers with Aquablend pencils.

The vase was created by up-cycling a mash potato container. (For those occasions I don't always have time to cook... don't tell I cut some card to fit around it, applied texture paste through the stencil for the leaves and also added texture gel. Stamped and painted images and decorated.  No photos though as camera died (rude.) 

Flamingo card...

Same method as above for the hummingbird card to create the background. Then I multi stamped the flamingos...I do like decoupage to add dimension. 

I glued the head and neck flat because they needed to be close and put a spot of 3D glue underneath the body to raise it up.

The water was created by drawing a horizon line, applying DI and then watering down some of the blue pebeo paints, mixed with silver glitter paint, and adding over the top in brush strokes. You will find it bleeds into the card but this gives a nice effect with the water. I also added some dark streaks with a darker blue DI. There are hints of pink in the water too for reflection. 

Large Kingfisher..

I created a background using the Barking Mad stencil (Create a Flower) as it works well for a watery feel with DI's. Sprinkle clear sparkle pen over this too. 

Stamped a mountain image by Sheena to build a scene. I like creating cards which look like a photograph, that a moment in time that has been captured. I added more colour to the hills after the photo was taken. Water was created the same way as it was for the flamingo card and I added shimmer with a clear sparkle pen.

Kingfisher was stamped twice, so I could decoupage.  I coloured him with Aquablend pencils but I wanted to have some feather texture to the bird too, so I added some small strokes with the Pebeo paints over the top, which you can just see.

I then added leaves around the scene which I had stenciled and then cut out. Applied 3D glue underneath.

Kingfisher in flight...

I love this image and wanted to keep in cleaner and more simple, so the focus is totally on the bird, that one moment.

For the background I brushed water over a piece of Sheena card and then, with a brush dropped watered down Pebeo paint onto the surface. I then sponged watered down silver pearl and silver glitter paint too, around the edge.

I then stamped and cut out the kingfisher twice, so I could decoupage the wing to add depth.

Peacock cards... 

The feather card background was created by wetting a piece of SC, misting it is a good way. I then dropped watered down Pebeo paints on to it from a fine brush. I chose the colours that appear in a peacock feather. 

I then went around the edges with blue DI ink. 

I then stamped the feather and peacock on to two pieces of SC. I took the photo without flash so you could see where I applied foil highlights.  I did this by brushing on the Pebeo mixition relief glue. They were coloured with Aquablend pencils.

I then drew a small border in pencil around the edge so I could have a guide to tear it to.

This background started off as the same as above, I just went a bit further with it and also sponged on watered down Pebeo. added more water and paint droplets, and then sprinkled salt on to it and left it to dry. When it was dry I dropped Pebeo liquid gilding paste on to it with a brush and then applied green, gold and blue foil when it was dry, again all the peacock colours.

Crafty Tip: When you are doing this method, make sure the card that you have cut is absolutely perfect and square, same size. Be careful not to over wet it as it will warp and be more difficult to mount on your card. Do not use heat as it will make this worse, leave it to dry and do something else. I found this out myself in the past from playing.

Then I began to arrange the card. The feathers are dies from the Downton Abbey collection and I thought they went well with it. They were painted and then pressed against a Versa Mark pad and then sprinkled with blue, green and gold embossing powder. A flower was then added, made form the Create a Flower centres. 

Something I can now tell you, only updating this page now.... I was very honoured to be asked to make another copy of my peacock card for Crafts Beautiful magazine, the current June issue. It was super exciting to see it in print the other day. :D I feel very lucky. 

So I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial,... hands up... I did waffle a teeny bit didn't I?! Oh well...epic can't be good at everything... I'll update other tutorials as soon as I can. 

Ciao for now lovely peeps!