Monday, 7 November 2016

My Journal page....

She was Grateful....

Hi everyone, it's my turn today to show you the Journal page I made for Roc Nicholas Design Team....

I haven't done a Journal page in a while, so after spending what seemed like ages trying to choose which journal to use, I finally opted for my pocket Moleskin. I enjoy working in smaller Journals, you get totally different results from working on larger projects... They're great fun and can be as detailed as you want them to be (or not)!!

I began by selecting a few co-ordinating colours of Amsterdam acrylic paint, in this case I chose shades of Turquoise, Lime Green, Yellows and a contrasting Pink, which really helps the other colours to 'pop'...

I started the page by layering the colours upon each other, beginning with the lightest colours first. In order to achieve a good blend of the colours, I always apply white paint with 
a dry brush over areas of the colour to soften the edges or joins. You can then reapply more colour to increase the depth or more white to soften the colour depending on the style you're looking for. Although I do have to mention that I always use a dry brush for this technique.

When I was happy with the border, I used white Gesso to block out a rectangular panel in the centre (it needed a couple of coats), this is where I wanted my main images to be...!
I made sure it was completely dry before drawing a border around the central panel with a black fine liner pen.

I chose some of my favourite background stamps and stencils for the next step as I wanted to use the same colour paints (or ink pads) to highlight areas of colour around the painted border. 
To make sure that I didn't stamp on to my clean gesso'd panel, I used a piece of paper as a mask, so any over-lapping would end up on the paper and not the Gesso. I was really pleased how the stamping and stencilling turned out!


Whilst everything was drying, I coloured in Roc's images which I'd stamped using Archival ink, as it's permanent...
I coloured the images using my favourite colouring pencils, which are a mix between Fabre Castell Polychromos and Caran d'Ache Pablo pencils. The colour ranges are beautiful and are so lovely to use and blend colours together.
Once I cut out my images, I positioned them on my page where I wanted them, then glued them into place.
All was left to do was some shading with a grey pencil around the base of the letters and under the 'Bird Lady's' shoes. This just gives the image some depth and grounds' it.

I hope you like my journal page? I love using Roc's stamps as they are so versatile and great fun...

Stamps I used were:-

- Bird Lady, Roc Nicholas
- Be Grateful, Roc Nicholas
- XXXX Border, Roc Nicholas
- Hearts Cubed, Jo Capper-Sandon 

I'd love to hear what you think, so please feel free to leave me a message. 

Thanks for looking, Happy Crafting Everyone xoxo 

Friday, 7 October 2016

The Witch with the Screaming Bunny.....

An early Halloween offering..... Bwaaa ha ha!

Hello to you all out there!  I just love this time of year when the leaves start to turn, the days feel crisper and I can snuggle up with a big blanket and my dog drinking endless amounts of tea (and crafting, of course!)

Well, it's my favourite time of the month again and that can only mean that it's my turn to show you my Design Team piece for Roc Nicholas DT....

My design piece is always due at the beginning of the month and because of this I didn't want to miss out on Halloween, so it's come early to my house this year...!


I used a 5x7" canvas for my project this time. I started by tearing up some vintage book, music and ledger pages, and glued them to the canvas. When dry, I applied a thin coat of Dina Wakley Gesso (by Ranger) using a palette knife - just enough so you could still see the type on the pages, then left it to dry. 

While the gesso was drying I chose which stamps I wanted to use, I had a picture in my head of the finished piece. 
I stamped the images onto watercolour card using Archival ink, then went back to the canvas. 
I used a combination of Tim Holtz Distress Sprays, Dylusions ink Sprays and DecoArt ink Sprays to colour the canvas. I used orange and yellow tones for the sky and deep purples, blues and crimson for the bottom.
I sprayed the colours so that they 'pooled' on the canvas, giving me the chance to let the inks run in any direction. Once I was happy, I dried it with my heat gun.

To give the background more interest, I stamped some patterns and shapes onto it with a 
corresponding colour.

To colour my stamped images I wanted to use Tim Holtz Distress Markers and Distress 
Crayons as watercolours. I'm a huge fan of the whole Distress range, especially the 
I began with the lightest colour and painted the images adding shading to gain depth. I love painting like this.

When all pieces were painted, dried and cut out, I could start assembling the canvas!!
I used Roc Nicholas 'Stacked boxes' stamp, but instead of boxes, I used them as 
tombstones, then stamped over them with a pale grey text stamp. 
I also used one of Tim Holtz Ideology Broomsticks, and one of his Ideology Pumpkin Pieces (which I cut in half to make two!)
I glued the witches hats to the Screaming bunny and the Bird Princess and then positioned my Witch (bird princess) on her broomstick. The Screaming Bunny Witch wanted to hitch a ride on the broom too! 
Then once I'd glued my pumpkins in place and stamped a quote I was finished.

The stamps I used were:- 


Roc Nicholas:-      Bird Princess
                           Screaming Bunny 
                           Stacked Boxes
                           Heart Vine 
Kare Crane:-      Approach with Caution 
                           Texture cube 
Daniel Torrente:-  Spiral Daydream

Stampers  Anonymous

Tim Holtz:-           Crazy Things

Tim Holtz Ideology:- Pumpkin Pieces

I hope you like my early Halloween offering. I had fun making it. Please pop to my blog and say hi, I'd love to read your messages.

Thanks or looking MWAH xx 



Wednesday, 7 September 2016

.....In a while Crocodile

Good morning all!!!

It's a beautiful day here again today, plus it's the 7th of the month which means that it's my turn as Roc Nicholas Design Team to post my work.....

As well as being my DT piece for this month, the postcard will also be sent to another participant in Roc's Rubber Stamp postcard swap group on Facebook this month. There are still a few days to take part...!

I used a 4x6in postcard to create this piece. I mixed black Gesso with Texture Powder to create a black texture paste, then stencilled circles (I'm a teeny weeny bit obsessed with circles) over the background.

Whilst it was drying I stamped out four of my favourite Roc Nicholas stamps (see below) on to good quality stamping paper. As the theme for the swap was 'Black and White with a pop of colour' I didn't have to do much colouring, but I wanted to colour in the gorgeous Alligator.

I'd recently bought Ranger's new 'Enamel Accents' and I love them. They are also great to paint with, just by adding some water to thin them down slightly, and when they're dry, you're left with a beautiful shiny finish - fabby!

When the textured circles were dry, I did some background stamping, then positioned my cut-outs on the card and glued them in place. 

Stamps I used are:
1. Crocodile
2. Leaf dot border
3. Polka dot dog
They can be found at

I'm quite pleased with it. Hope you like it too?!
Happy crafting friends, please pop by and say Hello, I'd love to hear from you xoxoxo

Friday, 19 August 2016

A 'Candy Box' Christmas...!

It's Christmas.....! (Part 1)

I'm so happy...! Christmas has come early, Yaaaaaaay!

I've been lucky enough to be asked to make some fabulous kits up by Roy Pakeman, owner of Candy Box Crafts to appear on Hochanda Craft Channel, eeeek so exciting!!

The first kit I've chosen to decorate is the beautiful 'Tall gift box'. It's such a versatile kit. You could make it into so many different things. It doesn't have to be a gift box, it could be a storage box, or a statement piece, a secret keeper, or even a vase for dried flowers?!

To start decorating this kit, I Gesso'd both sides of each piece. This is just to prime it and stop the paint being absorb into to the wood, you also get a truer colour.

I had an idea in my head as to what I wanted it to look like, a cold, winter, snowy scene, so I just had to choose my colours. I decided to use Tim Holtz Distress paints as they cover very well, are quite a liquid paint and the colours are amazing!
To achieve my wintery effect, I wanted cold colours so I chose a few shades of blue/turquoise and a couple of lilac/purple. 

I used my brayer to apply the paint, as I wanted a more layered effect to the surface of the wood. I started with a layer of 'titan buff' (Amsterdam paint) which is a lovely cream colour and as a base, easily helps the other colours blend together well. 
I started with the lightest blue first, and layered every piece with the same colour, in sort of a conveyor belt system, then when that side was dry I started again, with the same colour on the other sides. It worked quite well, because by the time you'd finished the last piece, the first one was dry - perfect!
Then just repeat each layer with the next colour, going slightly darker with each layer, but 
use the darker colours sparingly. I used the purples as the last layers. Then simply used an old bottle lid and store card to paint on circle and lines in the darker of the colours, they stand out so well. You could use any stamp as a background stamp.

I wanted to emboss beautiful snowflakes onto my box, so I chose larger ones for the main body and smaller ones for the lid's sides. I've got a gorgeous embossing powder by Stampendous 'Frantage' which is turquoise and gold when heated. Make sure you stamp off the edges of the pieces to ensure it doesn't look too symmetrical or perfect. It adds so much interest to the piece.
Once the embossing has cooled, it's then time to glue the box together. 

To do this, I began with the long sides and the smaller square (nothe the base piece). Personally, I love 'Cosmic Shimmer' glue, it dries quickly and is strong, but any wet glue should work.
Apply a thin layer of glue to the tab at the bottom of the long side, then along the indents to ensure its glued securely. Do this with each side remembering to glue the sides too.

Once everything has been glued together, leave it to dry completely. 
Whilst it was drying I chose one of Tim Holtz Ideology Christmas Tree's , as I wanted to use it in the hole in the lid. I wouldn't use it as a handle though as I don't think it would be quite strong enough. 
Before I attached it to the lid, I applied a few blobs of glue, here and there, then dipped it into some artificial snow, adding a star to the top to finish it off. Then glued it in place.

 I thought that I would use my box to keep some mini crackers in that I'd made to go inside. I painted them in the same colours as the box and adhered a gold embossed star to every other side of the cracker, then tied some tinsel around the ends, it was very cute!
By this point the glue had completely dried and the box was very solid, so now I could glue it to the base, knowing it wouldn't collapse in my hands! Haha! The last things  I added were  'Let it Snow' embellishments that I bought from Hobbycraft.  I attached 1 to opposite sides and then  some snow around the edge of the lid.  All finished!!!

I was so pleased with the quality of the Candy Box Kits, they are so well designed and cut. They fit together so well, it's not difficult at all to put them together. I don't make 3D projects very often, but I REALLY enjoyed making this, especially as it was Christmas themed.
I really would recommend them to everyone.

Hope you like my gift box, please leave a message if you do, I'd love to hear from you.

Happy crafting xoxo 

Sunday, 7 August 2016

'Fly Away'...

Fly Away with 'Flying Bird'

Time soon flies when your having fun and it's my turn to be DT for Roc Nicholas design team this month....


This is my make for this month. On the last Stampotique release of stamps I treated myself to several of Roc's new stamps, and one I couldn't resist was 'Flying Bird'. I fell in love with her straight away and it's such a versatile stamp.

I've been really enjoying playing around with textures and effects recently but, unfortunately these photos really don't show the depth, shimmer, brightness of colour and effect I managed to achieve. Sorry, I tried all sorts of angles...

I thought that I'd try and make my own texture paste as I wanted one that would hold its height but also have a rough surface to it so that it would grab hold of any medium and colour I was going to use over the top of it.
I managed to create a very thick, heavy, gritty paste and applied it to this canvas and left to dry.


Once it was dry I sprayed it with various different coloured sprays in bright tones then shimmer sprays.

I stamped out Roc's Flying Bird stamp, with an extra set of wings, and painted it with slightly watered down acrylic paint, until I got the depth of colour I wanted. I kept to the same lemon, blue and pink of the canvas.
 I then painted an opalescent pigment ink over the top of the painted duck. It gave such a lovely effect, and to tye the background in with the stamp, I spritzed the opalescent ink over the textured background.. I'm just gutted it doesn't show on here.

I really enjoyed making this, and as ever using Roc's stamps is a total pleasure.

Thanks for stopping by, please leave me a message to say hi. It's great hearing from you..

All Stampotique stamps are available at


Thursday, 7 July 2016

A Close Shave

A Close Shave...

It's my turn for the Roc Nicholas design team today.  

I decided to make a journal page this time, as I haven't made a journal page for a while and I really enjoy them.
There is a reason why I decided to call this piece "A Close Shave" and the reason is because I used shaving foam and acrylic inks swirled together to make the background. Your not only able to create beautifully different pages every time, but the paper smells divine too ;-)

I used a lot of Roc's new stamps for this page, as well as some of her other stamps. All of which can be found right here along with all her other wonderful designs for Stampotqiue Originals.

Please leave a message to say 'hi', I'd love to hear from you.

Hope you have a lovely day. Gemma xx

Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Bucking Bronco Bunny.........

'Yeeeeeeee Haaaaaaa'

Hello friends, I hope you're all well, feeling ├╝ber creative and crafty....!

It feels like such a long time since my last DT blog, but it's only been a few weeks!

Well, it's my turn to show my work for Roc Nicholas' Design Team today. 

For this piece, I wanted to try out different crackle pastes to see how good the results were on a couple of different papers.
I started by using a piece of watercolour card and selecting a few spray inks to use on it.  I wet the paper with water, which lets the inks blend much better. I used a combination of Dylusions and Tim Holtz Distress Sprays, which are my favourites sprays.

The paper has to be thoroughly dry before you attempt any sort of crackle effect.  I chose a stencil with various sizes of circles on (I have a pretty serious obsession with circular stamps and stencils - I just love them!) and applied Tim Holtz' Crazing medium through the stencil, then left it to dry again. You shouldn't use a heat tool with most crackle mediums. 

I stamped the bunny onto another piece of watercolour card which had a different type of crackle glaze on it. Unfortunately, the photos don't show the crackles very well. I had to leave the bunny to dry overnight because I applied a thick layer of Finnabairs Clear Crackle to it in order to get larger cracks.

To turn my bunny into a 'Bucking Bronco', I stamped out 'Nina' by Magda Polakow (stampotique) to sit on him. 
Finally, to finish my card off, I stamped out 'Squiggle Arms' and 'Scalloped Lace Border' both by Roc Nicholas (Stampotique) and coloured them all in using watercolour paints.

I was quite pleased with how well everything crackled, because I must admit, it never usually works for me. The best and easiest product I used was Tim Holtz' Crazing Medium. It's pretty much foolproof, dries quickly and by using Tim's 'Distress Crayons' they enhance the colour and crackles perfectly.

I hope you like this. I enjoyed making it and playing around with different mediums.  

Yeeeeeee Haaaa......

The stamps I used were all by Stampotique.

 -  Bunny
Are all by Roc Nicholas

 - Nina by Magda Polakow

Thanks for popping over, please feel free to leave a message, I'd love to hear from you....!

Happy Crafting..........

Gemma xoxoxo