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'Grow' – An Autumnal Layout using a Household Object

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It always amazes me that distress inks can make such a dramatic transformation to a humble page.

During my anniversary trip to London, I picked up a cute and whimsical jewellery stand which I simply adore. I saw it in the shop window and I grabbed Craig’s hand and pulled him inside the store and batted my eyelashes until he took out his credit card. Of course I don’t really care if its for jewellery, its just so pretty it stands in my craft room as a piece of home decor, but…. a confession I must share….

Well, I couldn’t help it. I had to try and replicate it onto a scrapbook page because the design is so beautiful, so I decided to try to use it as a mask.

One word – AWESOME!

It totally worked and gave a brilliant result to my first autumn layout of 2009. Do you like it? Here’s how i did it.

I picked out a ledger style piece of 12×12 scrapbook paper as the starting block of my project, and surrounded myself with Tim’s famous and fantastic distress paints by Ranger. With a tape runner, I put a few strips of removable glue on the back of the jewellery stand and laid it down flat unto the paper. Whilst holding the tree in place with one finger, I tapped the cut & dry foam onto my Peeled Paint distress ink, and rubbed this in circles over the tree which was serving me as a mask. By building up the layers of ink, it is easy to create beautiful multi-tonal effects. I didn’t quite know how well my experiment would work until I pulled away the tree and was astonished by the result. I love it when a plan comes together.

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Although it looked fantastic, I did decide however to use a brown fine line marker pen to draw the outline of the tree as the little birdie at the top faded away into the background of the paper, and was difficult to identify (poor birdie).

Happy with my tree, I then set to work on the rest of the layout.

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I decided to make a collage effect around the edges of the paper to create a sense of a frame or border to the project, which would help anchor the tree to the page, and also create a sense of cohesion to the elements that would eventually lie within. So I took a piece of scrap paper and tore out a square that was roughly 7″x7″ and using my removable tape runner adhesive once again, I stuck this to the centre of the scrapbook page. Next, using the distress paints again, I began stamping along the edges with a few classic rubber stamps from my collection: A brocade stamp from Anna Griffin, Text stamp from HeroArts, and an acrylic spots stamp from Prima. Whilst the ink was still a little wet, I used the foam applicator to smudge the ink slightly, and to build up the colour around the edges. Then, for a rustic feel, I inked the edges of the paper, and distressed them with the edge of a craft knife.

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As the tree was quite large, this formed a large focal area on the right hand side of the page, so I decided to create a little bit of balance by using a grid format to introduce more patterned papers and a few photos – of my nephew Joshua of course.

Inspired by the rustic vibe that I was rockin’, I reached for my crackle paint and chipboard letters. There is a lot of talk in the industry just now about Tim Holtz’s Distress one-step crackle paint, and I have been wanted to get my hands on it for quite some time, but then I remembered that I had a bottle of crackle medium somewhere that I had bought when I was at Uni. I hunted it out and figured out how to use it. Its pretty easy really: apply a layer of acrylic paint, let dry; apply a layer of clear crackle medium, let dry; then apply a layer of another colour of paint on top and once again let dry. The finished product be mostly the top colour, but the cracks will be the colour that was first applied. In my case, I painted brown first, then crackle medium, then green. Lets say I can certainly see the appeal of the one step process. Another great tip when using this crackle technique, is that you can use your foam ink applicator and distress inks over the top of the project to enhance the crackles as the ink will seep into the cracks making them more defined.

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After playing with all that ink and paint, it was time to embellish: a few flowers, buttons and brads as aways, mixed with a rub on or two and I was practically finished. As a finishing touch I cut up some prima flowers to look like little leaves and scattered them over the layout to create an autumnal effect. And look how wonderful those metal embellishments from the Idea-ology line look with this layout. Yumminess.

Hope you like it, and don’t forget that this layout all started because I repurposed a household item (which by the way was as good as new after I wiped it with a baby wipe), so why don’t you take a look around and see what things you have in your house that could be a unique tool to use in your next crafting session.

Thanks for stopping by.

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Journaling reads
I’m sorry I’m not there to watch you grow.

{ 2 comments… add one }
  • Carmen September 28, 2009, 10:33 am

    This is just stunning Lesley and what a gorgeous effect with the tree, I don’t blame you one bit for the eyelash batting – it comes in handy sometimes doesn’t it? Now come on, ‘fess up, did you have the idea for the page at the time of said eyelash batting? Hm? Hm?

    I think this is possibly my favourite scrapbook page of yours that I’ve seen so far 😉

    • Hungryheffy September 29, 2009, 8:46 pm

      awww thanks Carmen, now i have a challenge to make one that you like even better!
      In all honesty i didnt think of using this on a page at the time of the aforementioned eyelash batting, i just wanted it cos it was pretty, but after such a success, i am definitely keeping this in mind every time i see any household item that catches my eye. x

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