Monday, February 14, 2011

A Confession About My Obsessions

Graphic Supplied from the Graphic Fairy

Happy Valentines Day! I decided to do a little creative work today using Valentine's Day as my muse, and I needed to make my husband a little something to show him that I care. I first decided to make him a collaged Cake Slice Favor Box (I have the die from my party favor business A Favor's a Favor) to hold some candy. I started gathering materials for my collaged cake slice from my stash. I grabbed some collage papers, some sheet music from an old French book, paper napkins and some of my....

but first a confession.

my Tissue Paper Stash

I confess, I have a compulsion to keep all tissue paper that comes in to my life! I love to collage tissue paper on to a project. I like that it is semi-transparent when glued down, and I love the wrinkly texture. Embrace all wrinkles in your life, I say!
I started my project by cutting the box pieces on my Accucut machine from watercolor paper. I wanted to do a light wash of color on the box, but did not want to add a layer of paint because acrylic paint can make a box cover stick or not slide on properly. I chose to try a new medium that I have never tried before; Liquid Acrylic Ink. 

I had purchased some bottles of this ink on sale when Charette closed it's retail store in Woburn, MA. I squeezed some drops of the pearlescent magenta color, and quickly spread it with a wet brush. I immediately fell in love with it's pearly quality, the surface of my project took on a high sheen. All I could think of was spun cotton candy.

It really dries quick, and doesn't saturate the paper it's applied to. I decided I didn't want a pink top for the cake box, so I painted over the acrylic ink with some gesso. I really like the small jars of gesso that Claudine Hellmuth has with Ranger. They are a lot easier to open than larger jars and don't dry out before you can get to the bottom of the jar.

 I then started composing the top of the box using the French music paper, an Eiffel Tower image from some collage sheets, and roses cut from a gorgeous paper napkin that my friend Lorraine gave me.

After glueing all my collage elements with Golden Soft Gel medium, I added some little punched out hearts to the side of the box cover.

One little heart tried to escape....

Finally, I added gold glitter using the the Quickie Glue pen. I always say, when in doubt, just add a little bling!

I then turned my attention to the box bottom. I didn't want to hide the glossy pink wisps made with the brushed ink on the box, so I decided to stamp some swirls on each of the three sides. I felt like there was a disconnect between the colors represented on the cover and the box bottom, so I collaged a few more roses from the paper napkin to link the pieces together compositionally. Finally, more glitter.

The last step was to add the word "Amore" to the top with gold sticker letters. 

Now you're probably wondering where the tissue paper came in. It turned out to be a misstep. I thought this box needed a more sturdy construction than watercolor paper, so I cut out a box from chipboard that the watercolor paper would then be adhered to. I thought that gold metallic tissue paper would make a dandy lining, so I glued it to the wrong side of the chipboard. After constructing the box with the two layers, I realized it was way too bulky. I was able to tear apart the layers, just in the nick of time. I ended up lining the box with some red mulberry paper infused with gold threads instead.

I also baked my hubby his favorite dessert today; his mother's recipe for Bread Pudding. This is a traditional dessert for him at the holidays, as he and his sibilings joke around each year, checking that the other hasn't gotten a bigger serving.

As far as a card is concerned, I decided to make a large tag to accompany the gifts. Now about my other obsession of the moment....

the "Reindeer Flight" die by Tim Holtz and Ranger. I fell in love with this die last holiday season, while cutting out forty of them for tags that adorned goodie bags for a "Shop Hop" bus trip. Right in the middle of those forty cuts, I fell in love. I decided I needed that die for myself, and sold several of them to staff and customers at Ink About It. Everyone agreed; once you start using it you realize it's charm and value. I used this die to label my Christmas packages this year. 
Last week, I got an idea to use this deer die to make cards for other holidays, not just Christmas. Why only use this beautiful die one month out of the year I ask? 

I started off by making a spring deer card using the die....

While making this card, I got an idea for another one. I love silhouettes, so I decided to make some silhouetted deer in front of a forest at twilight using a Hero Arts Birch Tree stamp...

Check out the blog post on  referencing the store owners"concern" about my obsession over this die.

If you've done anything "non-Christmas" with this die, send along a photo in your comment to this post. Be a "Deer" and send it along, won't you?


Lori said...

Hi Karen, Just LOVE this new project with the reindeer die! And that bread pudding looks so yummy. I'll need that recipe!

Anonymous said...

Hi Karen,

So glad I came across your recent blog. Looks like you have been busy the last several months. What a great Valentine! Love also the use of the deer die, but not sure I can embrace the use os it since I planted a large quantity of bulbs before all this snow.....and fingers crossed they are still there to bloom! Hello to the family. Shirl

Karen's Sketchbook said...

Hi Karen, No wonder you are obsessed. And I love that yummy bread pudding. I love all of your heart love, and your Reindeer flight creations. Loving the one with the snow.

I wrote about The Scrapbook Challenge on my sketchbook blog and my regular blog. I linked to here on both posts. I finally did my OPPOSITES!

Thank you for always being my inspiration. I want to sign up for the Sketch In for April.