Gardenpinks' Blog

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Archive for the tag “embossing”

Christmas cards

Hope everyone had a lovely Christmas and managed to avoid the dreaded Novovirus! It has been horrendous this year.

Here are a couple of  Christmas cards designs I made for our grandchildren using Sara’s templates from Cardmaking Paradise   these were fun to make and loved by the little ones. Sara is one very clever lady to keep coming up with new projects and templates!

Percy polar bear

Percy polar bear

Percy polar bear stands up and has a shiny eye and nose; I made two of these with different coloured scarves for the youngest boys!

sleigh card

sleigh card

Now don’t look too closely at the ‘pearls’! I used liquid pearls to decorate the gold strip and set it aside to dry whilst then working on another project, unfortunately a piece of card sprung up and landed in the not-yet- dry ‘pearls’ and smudged them! The small parcels were stamped and coloured on a piece of thick printer paper and then layered to give a 3D effect.

Sleigh card 2

Sleigh card 2

A piece of gold mirror card was used for the ‘body’ of the above sleigh which was embossed with an embossing folder. The light gives the impression that the mirror card has been coloured with alcohol inks but it hasn’t been! The background of both the sleigh cards was created with blue inks and then stamped with a small snowflake/star using Brilliance Cosmic Copper ink.

Thanks for looking



Altering dominoes…basic guide part 2

Love the experimenting Leslie has done so far and can’t wait to see what Shelly and Linda come up with!

Okay so in the last post we covered background colouring and what can be used although only a small part of colouring media has been discussed – I haven’t yet played with paints or clay. I have seen a lovely work of art on dominoes with air dry clay…roll out a layer of clay and press a stamp into the clay. Cut the clay to size and then leave to dry, adhere to the domino and then colour the clay in any way you want. Friendly Plastic is another thing to experiment with but I don’t have any of this material.

Right onto the first domino.. remember the multi coloured with? Promarkers were used to lay down the colour, I then went on to add beads and small seashells:

beads and seashells

I put small amounts of Glossy Accents onto the domino and sprinkled the beads on first…when adding beads lay the domino into a shallow container lined with fabric or kitchen towel to stop the beads bouncing every which way! The shells were collected from the beaches of the Isles of Scilly and I spent ages hunting for the smallest!! I then used Anita’s 3D  Clear Gloss Finish as this is so much cheaper than Glossy Accents.

glazing fluid

It was intended to be used for decoupage but has other uses too.

The Bottle and Denim domino had two leaf charms adhered to it:

Leaf charms

Quite a lot of the background colour can still be seen unlike the multi coloured one..and this is how the leaf domino looks after being glazed:

Leaves glazed

I haven’t yet covered the edges of either of these two dominoes. Onto the two yellow and orange ones; one I stamped with a flower stamp, this is a border stamp so obviously not all of the image fitted onto the domino. I inked up the stamp and left it image side up and then pressed the domino on to the part of the image I wanted:

Yellow and orange inked dominoes

Tiny beads were adhered to the flower centres, a leaf charm added and then the whole was glazed with Anita’s 3D Clear Gloss Finish. The edges of the domino were finished off with a gold metallic pen. A bead was adhered to the top of the domino for a thong or cord to be threaded through. The second yellow and orange domino had a music note image stamped onto it with black Stazon and then a piece of white tissue paper was stamped with a flourish stamp, this tissue paper was then adhered to the domino and once dry the paper was trimmed to size. Close up of the added bead:

bead added

gems added

Above is the tissue paper domino with gems added and then the clear gloss covering it all; these gems are tiny and fiddly and I just placed them in position on top with no adhesive to hold them in place so when the glaze was added two decided to ‘swim’ and flipped over hence the silvery look to two of the gems! I couldn’t persuade them to flip back and gave it up!

Okay onto the pink coloured domino. For this one I stamped a dragonfly image on to the domino with Versamark and then heat embossed with gold detail embossing powder. Glossy Accents was trailed over the body part of the dragonfly and red glitter sprinkled onto the adhesive. Once the adhesive was dry the edges were embossed with gold ep too – one side at a time…don’t forget how heat retentive these dominoes are, ouch! The image was then glazed:

embossed dragonfly

gold embossed edges

For the blue domino I went for simple stamping; I love bird stamps and the one I used on this domino is my favourite at the moment; stamped with Stazon and then a shrink plastic feather added:

birds and feather

Finally the black domino! I decided to do something different again here; I squidged (technical term!) the domino into the Versamark ink pad, sprinkled UTEE over it and heated to melt the crystals, whilst still hot added more UTEE and heated again. I did this four times and then on the last layer and whilst still hot I spooned green glitter over the domino and then a quick blast with the heat gun to let the glitter sink into the UTEE. A fan charm was pressed down into the still warm UTEE and a light covering of glaze once the domino had cooled down. The edges were smeared with adhesive and dipped into the green glitter:

(once) black domino

Hope you will try some of these basic techniques 🙂


Junque Journal

First my apologies for an out of focus photograph! Like my last project, the canvas collage, I have two people to thank for inspiring me to start creating the junque journal.

Nancy showcased a journal she had created especially for a competition and I have to say that when I first saw her delightful project I had never heard of junque journals – I know I must have fallen asleep when they came about – so off I went in search of junque journals. Not only was I intrigued but these projects spoke to my soul and I knew I had to create one at least. I loved the idea of somewhere to store all those bits and pieces that we keep but have no definite place of their own; the other thing that drew me in was I could use papers, charms and other ephemera that I had collected but didn’t want to use on a card that may end up being thrown away.

Besides all the ‘usual’ craft culprits that we hoard I also hoard notebooks.. doesn’t matter if they have been used for other purposes I just rip out the used pages and keep the rest of the book with no real purpose in mind and this journal of mine was one such. It had been used by one of our daughters when they were at school and I rescued it from the rubbish where it had been consigned during one of the girls’ tidy ups.  Its original duty was as a cash book, it then became a scribble book and has been turned into a storehouse for my squirrelings!

The second person who inspired me was Billie with her virtual challenge of using paint; the covers of this book were ideal for painting and I also wanted to try, yet again, creating a crackle effect using pva glue…something I hadn’t been able to achieve to date.

too much crackle effect

I put on a base coat of raw umber acrylic paint and left it to dry thoroughly, then a coat of slightly diluted pva glue was added but before the glue dried out completely (whilst still slightly tacky) I added a top coat of dark blue acrylic paint – remembering to apply this in one loaded brush stroke at a time in the same direction. Boy oh boy did it crackle!! Huge chasms appeared but I was delighted because it actually worked and I realised what mistake I had made; the pva wasn’t quite diluted enough and was too thickly applied in places – never mind I had the back cover to experiment on and this turned out better.

finer crackles

Not only were the crackles finer but were certainly more pleasing – here I used burnt sienna as a base coat with flesh as a top coat. The mistake here was the top coat was a little too thickly applied in places but heck it pleases me and I finally got crackles, my technique just needs refining! Now this probably isn’t quite what Billie had in mind but I enjoyed slapping the paint on… the only problem was my impatience whilst waiting for the paint to dry as I wanted to get on with it all.

Following the tutorials for creating junque journals I next strongly secured the signatures – sections of folded and stitched papers – so that they didn’t tear or come adrift once the journal started to fill up. Yay I could use up some of my ribbon and I could attach some handmade charms made with that ever growing collection of beads.

ribbon and charms

I find it very difficult to use ribbon in card making; on everyone else’s cards that piece of ribbon finishes off the whole but on mine it looks like an afterthought and never seems to be part of the whole but this journal was an ideal way of using some of it up.

So what to put on the front?  A title? Now I am not an orginal thought person and so my title reflects what the journal is about….a repository for what others may deem as junk!

decorated wooden letters

Using wooden letters to create the word ‘junque’ seemed like a good idea. Some letters I applied Versamark embossing ink and then applied UTEE (ultra thick embossing enamel) and heated to melt; two or three coats of UTEE was used and then a final coat of gold embossing powder. To other letters a product called Stamp and Bond by Stampendous was applied over Versamark and heated until it became sticky and then foils added. Before adhering the letters to the front thread was put through two charms and the ends of the thread were glued to the back of two of the letters. Two strips of embossed aluminium tape were adhered top and bottom of the front cover but I couldn’t stop there…..

clay buttons

I had the good fortune of meeting a delightful lady who is talented at making decorative ornaments and coasters from clay; when Kate rolls the clay out she does so over a piece of lace which leaves a nice lacy effect in the clay. These buttons were made from scraps of her lacy clay and I couldn’t resist buying them and where better to use them than on my journal where I will recall her every time I look at the book. (A little aside here..if you click on the Kate link you will see her craft stall and I am directly behind her with my back turned!!!!)

So that is the outside complete and now to the inside:

inside cover

Part of the instructions in creating a junque journal is to crumple pages and ink them then add papers to some pages and finally to start assembling all the bits and pieces to go inside but that was taking too long and I was becoming impatient. I wanted to start adding ‘things’. So a few pages were inked, some papers came out that I had hoarded and then I started going through folders, file boxes and elsewhere looking for all my treasures. Where I unearthed this Rune of the Peat Fire from I know not where and it is looking a bit tattered and crumpled at the corners so its new home will stop any further deterioration.

theatre tickets

Earlier this year we had a surprise gift of tickets to see The Searchers live at a local theatre; what a great evening that was. Two of the original group (from the 60s!) were still going strong and in fine voice considering one was now 70 and the other 67!! The theatre was packed and not with just old fogies but everyone was joining in the songs and getting up and dancing! What wonderful memories these tickets will bring and the sentiment..a rub on..fitted perfectly “The Older The Fiddler, The Sweeter The Tune”!

Leslie's card

The journal is a great place for storing these lovely mementoes from dear friends; Leslie sent this card with some stamps I won and a blending pen. The saying above the card came from one of the places Leslie visited while doing her day job – “Life doesn’t have to be Perfect to be Wonderful”. On the opposite page is a pocket holding a receipt and other reminders of a wonderful stay we had at the Chateau Impney in April 2010.

hand made background paper

One of the many sheets of paper I created using a crumpled up sheet of copier paper and then inks or paints wiped over to highlight the creases. In this case I used some Twinkling H2Os on a piece of sponge and a Brilliance ink pad – Galaxy Gold with a small rub-on in the top corner.

inked pages

And, finally, inked incomplete pages. The edges of the all the pages have been inked with various colour inks and some pages have been swiped with the ink pad but nothing else as yet has been added to the pages. This is an ongoing project that I am not in a hurry to complete as I’m enjoying the journey.

Thank you for stopping by and reading this post x

Canvas Collage


Some time ago, whilst grocery shopping, I saw some small canvases for sale. An aside here for my overseas friends..over here in the UK there are some supermarkets (e.g. Lidl, Aldi) that not only sell groceries but are renowned for the other items they occasionally offer such as craft items, office items, shoes, plants, etc and I was shopping in one of these when I spotted the canvases..phew!

Size wise, from memory as I am too lazy to go and measure one, they are roughly 9 x 12 inches and were very good value. So I bought a pack of two and promptly put them away in a cupboard and there they languished until two lovely ladies inspired me to hunt out these canvases; one lady by the name of Billie had one of her Virtual Crafting Challenges for July and August all about paint. Now Billie is very enthusiastic about painting and sketching which I know I am not brilliant at – hey a woman has to know her limitations (as Clint Eastwood might have said!) but I can slap a bit of paint around now and again. The other inspirational lady is Leslie have to visit her blog to see how creative she is …. Leslie can see crafty uses in many things such as a circuit board or picture frame. I see a picture frame and think “Oh yes there is a photo that would fit in that one” but Leslie sees a picture frame and thinks “Oh yes I’ll make a clock out of that”!! Now that is inspired creativity.

Anyhow these two ladies between them enthused me to try something a bit different and back we come to the Canvas Collage. I slapped some acrylic paint on the canvas itself; there is a mixture of colours here but mainly a hint of Burnt Umber mixed with white and then a dash of gold acrylic paint added here and there. The covering is not even and that is deliberate.. now this is quite hard for me to do as I would normally cover the surface with an even coat of paint so I went outside my comfort zone a tad here and just painted in a sort of distressed style letting some of the orignal canvas show through. Around the edges I smeared some light blue acrylic paint and then whilst the paint was drying I pondered on what to do next.

Now I don’t know about you but I have a collection of ‘found’ objects; some I have found whilst gardening other things whilst rummaging around in boxes at jumble sale type events. These are items that catch my eye and then wonder what I’m going to do with them and usually end up popping them into a box however that box was emptied out and I rediscovered these ‘found’ treasures and thought they would make lovely additions to my collage.

Found tile

This lovely little tile was found when I was digging in one of the flower beds. I have no idea what it came off or where it came from but it is pretty and very small – less than half inch square. The blue ‘squiggles’ are stylised flowers.

Found wooden button





A sweet wooden button I came across when rummaging around in a box at a car boot sale or jumble sale .. forget which now … that was lying in my ‘treasure’ box. It depicts blackberries and is quite cute.


Postcard from Italy


Postcard from Italy showing a stone sculpture of a reposing lady; the sculpture is in a wooded area.  Just wish we could afford to have sculptures like this in our garden!



I decorated this domino a while ago and I bet you will never guess what it is covered with nor where the piece under the domino came from… give up? It is a sticky backed transparent cover off a cigarette lighter! I have several of these covers in various colours and designs; one day having little to occupy my fingers I started picking at the corner of the covering on a lighter and it came off cleanly. I edged the domino with gold pen.


hand made paper

Not sure if you can see this corner piece of hand made paper very clearly but this is just copier paper, the stamp used is Penny Black’s Chantilly Lace; a very large background stamp. I stamped in Versamark and embossed with silver embossing powder and then coloured with inks and removed excess ink from the embossing. This was the last piece of this particular handmade designed paper.

stamped vellum

A large collage stamp on vellum and embossed with white detail ep, it was cut out and laid onto a hand made tag.

charms & feather

Just like it says on the tin! A feather shaped charm and one feather gathered whilst out walking together with various beads. The white piece of ‘stone’ was collected off a beach; it isn’t actually stone – not actually sure what it is but it is very light and worn with pits in its surface.


Another one of those items collected on my travels…I have no idea where this dictionary saying came from, I came across it one day hidden in a drawer of crafty ‘stuff’ and it was so apt for this whole canvas. So many items on here were either ‘unearthed’, ‘located’, found or uncovered – a most serendipitous find! I wish I could ‘happen upon’ more of these dictionary labels.

Thanks for getting this far 🙂


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