Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Splitcoast Tutorial: Paper Bracelet

 This week's tutorial over on Splitcoast is a fun little Paper Bracelet - it's a fun way to use up some scrap paper and make a custom accessory!

The box is part of the tutorial too - I really like this style! Perfect measurements, and so much sturdier with the doubled sides.

 I tweaked the instructions and made my version with smaller beads (the tutorial uses a pencil as a form - for mine I wrapped the beads on a quilling needle). Here are both bracelets together so you can see the difference in size.

I used an elastic thread to string my bracelet - this is the thread I found (check with the other elastic products at Walmart, or you can find it on Amazon HERE) - the quilling tool is a great piercing tool and I use it quite often to release die cuts from detailed dies because the piercer on my Spellbinders Tool-n-One broke. It's this one.

Paper beads are fun to make - these were easy to roll and adhere - you can use a varnish to give them a little sheen as well!
Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, June 19, 2017

Surprise summer sale is ON!

Use coupon code SUMMER25 to take a big 25% discount off your order of $20 or more at Impression Obsession from now until NEXT Sunday night (JUNE 25th) at midnight EST. 

This INCLUDES all clearance and sale items on the site and there are LOTS of those. We just refilled our cling stamp clearance section, our Cover-a-Card background 2nds, and our overstock dies section and we still have HUNDREDS of clear sets at 50% off PLUS the additional discount.

Go shop! You're welcome! :)

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Ellen Hutson Summer Sale

Just a quick heads up - Ellen Hutson is having a sale! You can use the coupon code below for 15% off your entire order through Saturday. Clicking through from my blog to purchase will kick a small commission my way at no cost to you - affiliate links help me to fund this site and I am very grateful! Go shop!
Thanks for stopping by!

Impression Obsession DT Challenge: Oh My Stars!

The Impression Obsession team's challenge today is to create a project with stars or a patriotic theme. Here's my card:

I've been wanting to play around with Distress Oxide inks on photo paper, so this was one of my experiments - I inked and misted the stars before stamping, and then as the ink dried, I spritzed the panel with rubbing alcohol.

The base ink (dye ink?) creates an instant 'print' on the photo paper, but the 'oxide' part of the ink dries as a chalky finish on the surface. The alcohol allows it to float and move a little, so the more vibrant base ink is exposed. You can buff it off when the panel is all dry for a vibrant effect, or you can leave the displaced chalkiness and spray it with a fixative - that's what I did here. I'll work on this more so I can work out a tutorial - I didn't get the same results the second time so I need to figure out some things first.

The sentiment is heat embossed which is a little scary on photo paper - you can't see it because I fixed it, but the paper did actually bubble and pop in one place!

Stamps I used: You Rock, Rock Silhouette, Grunge Star, Grunge Star 2, Woodgrain Border 

Be sure to check out these other designers' blogs for inspiration - and please welcome the newest member of our team, Chris Dayton!

Vicki @ Summerthyme Studio

Remember you can enter these challenges too, using your Impression Obsession stamps! See the I.O. blog for all the details - you might even win a $25 gift certificate!! We'd love to have you join us.
Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Splitcoast Tutorial: Pencil Indenting

 It's my turn to share a tutorial over at Splitcoast, and I wanted to take one more opportunity to show off the Chameleon Color Tones Pencils with a fun and easy technique - it's called Pencil Indenting, and it's a great way to add texture and finely detailed highlights to pencil coloring.

I chose a couple images from Unity Stamps by Phyllis Harris because her images always have such beautiful details and motion in them. (This set is called Life Is Better, and I used a sentiment from Inky Antics.) In this card I used the technique to add highlights to the little girl's hair and shirt and the puppy's fur. 

On the second card I used the technique to add a pattern to the girl's dress, then added highlights to her hair, the dandelion, and the seeds blowing in the air. (This set is called Every Breath and the sentiment is by Marcella Hawley.)

This was such a fun card to make, and the Color Tones pencils made color choices and shading so easy. I worked from light pressure on the image to very heavy pressure in the background, and they performed just perfectly.

I also used a battery eraser to add highlights to the images, which you'll see in the tutorial video - this is the one I have:

... and you can find it HERE on Amazon! I was playing with it today on PanPastels as well as Distress Oxide inks - it's a lot of fun and such a useful tool to have.

By the way - if you're interested in purchasing a set of Color Tones pencils for yourself, be sure to use this discount code!

Thanks for visiting me today!

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, June 12, 2017

I.O. Veggie sets

 Just wanted to share, in case you haven't seen these adorable veggie pun sets by Kalani Allred...

Each stamp has an illustration along with a punny sentiment. You can obviously leave the stamps intact, or carefully trim the stamps apart (like I've done below) so the image and sentiment are separate. They're just so fun! 

 You can find all the sets by clicking HERE! These would make super cute mini notecards or veggie valentines.

Have a great week!

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, June 07, 2017

Splitcoast Tutorial: Cake Box

Today's tutorial over on Splitcoast is a fun Cake Box - a single box is shaped like a slice of cake - or you could make a plateful to create a cake for party or wedding favors.

The template is provided, and the box goes together very easily - the fun is in the decorating! I mixed up some modeling paste with a little acrylic paint to match my trim, then sprinkled the top with some festive confetti. So fun!

Speaking of sweet treats... I had the opportunity to take a class with a local pencil artist last weekend - this is what I came home with! I'm still working on some details, but it was fun to transfer my pencil skills to something a little larger scale.

Next month she's going to help me get going on a piece I sketched out probably 2 years ago. I just need a push sometimes!
Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, June 05, 2017

No Better Friend

It has been so much fun guest designing for Whimsy Stamps these last few months! Here's one more card to share.

This little dragon from Whimsy Stamps is irresistible... his name is Freddie. So cute!

I started off my coloring by misting the watercolor panel and dotting in some paint with a wet-into-wet technique, and that gave me the undertones for the dragon as well as a matching background color.

I added in more details with Zig and Akashiya Sai markers and a little more watercolor.

Here's a look at the full background panel - I did this in 3 layers on my Gelli Plate - 1) a solid light yellow layer, 2) a layer of darker yellow pressed with an open embossing folder, and 3) a stenciled layer of light green.

Here's the combination - and the dragon image actually fronts a mini card that's mounted on a flat card base. The sentiments are from a new clear set called Magical Birthday Wishes, which is full of sentiments that are perfect for whimsical and fantasy stamps!

So much cuteness! I'm adding this to my etsy store - I've got a few cards in there, tucked in with the usual pendants and prints. Take a peek! 

I've got one more Whimsy project to share - next week! Take care!
Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, June 01, 2017

Impression Obsession DT Challenge: Friendly Florals

The Impression Obsession team's challenge today is to create a project featuring flowers. This is another project I did when I was testing out the new IO Hybrid inks! These inks are grouped in color trios, which are perfect for layering stamps, like this rose set!

Using the MISTI, I stamped each layer of the flower, then moved the card up to stamp the other 2 at equal increments... this is a great way to stamp multiples on a single card, or mass produce a set of cards!

These are the inks that I used to get the effect you see here - this is a 5-step set, so the first 2 steps were done in the lightest color, the third and fourth in the medium color, and the last layer with the darkest color.

Here's a closer look at the finished image - I also added some shading around each rose to make it pop!

Stamps/sets I used: Rose Set 2, Strength

Be sure to check out these other designers' blogs for inspiration -

Vicki @ Summerthyme Studio

Remember you can enter these challenges too, using your Impression Obsession stamps! See the I.O. blog for all the details - you might even win a $25 gift certificate!! We'd love to have you join us.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Product Review: Chameleon Color Tones Pencils

The Splitcoast Product Focus today is all about these Chameleon Color Tones pencils! I'm so happy to have had a chance to play with these. Here's what I know!

A few facts first, because these pencils really surprised me:

--Most split-color pencils we've seen have been scholastic quality. Color Tones are the first artist grade pencils of this kind. 

--They are wax based, and highly pigmented. The wax in the binder is harder than other wax pencils. It allows the pencils to keep a sharp point for much longer than other pencils in this category. The leads are very strong. And presharpened!

--The color cores of each pencil are bonded from end to end, so they are break resistant, even when dropped. The wood is high quality, and won't snag in a sharpener.

--I have to confess I'm always skeptical of new pencil collections, when there are such high standards from companies with centuries of experience. But... these pencils are manufactured in Austria, by a company who has been producing quality colored pencils for over 150 years

The packaging of the pencils is impressive from the start. The box is very sturdy, and closes with a magnetic flap. Once open, the box folds open under itself to create an easel for the pencils. So convenient. the case would be easy to tuck in a bag for a trip or coloring on the go.

Each pencil is also labeled with a number and both color names.

Each number corresponds to the color index that is included inside the box. 

I have done other pencil reviews, so I used the same chart for a few simple tests...  my scanner did some auto tuning which affected the lightest pressure area, but otherwise, the scan is pretty accurate.

You can see that the pencils are able to produce all shades (light to medium to dark) from each color, with very even coverage. I tried my 3 standard blending methods, and the pencils performed wonderfully. 

I shared my card samples in full in some blog posts last week, but here are some close-ups of each of them, with my thoughts! All the images were stamped on Strathmore XL Bristol paper - I love this particular paper pad because the paper has two different surfaces. I usually use the rougher side, but if you prefer smoother paper, or you're not sure which you prefer, you've got both options to choose from.

The sample above was colored with a single pencil, using both ends to layer color. It was very easy and felt really natural to just flip the pencil back and forth. The colors are so well matched, and blend together so easily.

The giraffe was blended in the same way - just lots of patient layering of color. I stamped this little guy in a light color for a no-line effect, and used both of the brown pencils (4 tones) to color him in.

I colored the snail image with a variety of colors, and blended my coloring with odorless mineral spirits - again, the colors blended perfectly and stayed vibrant because of the high pigment load.

The pencils performed well on kraft paper as well, and remained vibrant - I really like that effect.

 I was watching product videos from Chameleon that were taken at Creativation and one was a demonstration of the pencils being used on wood, so I had to try that out as well - and WOW! The colors blended well and stayed vibrant and true on the smooth wood surface. I'll have to try this again!

All in all, I'm so impressed with these pencils, and so thankful to have had the opportunity to play with them! Hopefully the line will expand to add open stock pencils and more colors - I'm not sure what Chameleon has in the works, but I do feel like these pencils are going to be a hit! :) 

Thanks for stopping by!