Welcome to Snazzys blog where we hope to offer you regular inspiration using all the latest products both in store and the new Snazzys Online version. Plus, previews of upcoming workshops, product previews and reviews, mini tutorials and so much more.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Winter Pastels

This is probably the sample I have been asked about most this season, so to Barbara, Alison, Lucy and so many more, here is the how to as promised...

You need a stamp which gives the illusion of being more or less symmetrical. This one is an old favourite from Inkadinkado and I sometimes use the old PSX Christmas Village in the same way.
I used black cardstock, cut to the same width as your stamp and twice as high, as the base but any deep coloured cardstock will do, and the Ranger Perfect Pearl colours I used were Perfect Pearl, Interference Violet, Turquoise and Berry Twist. You can try other Mica Powders for this but the inbuilt resin in Perfect Pearls allows for a wonderfully clear and crisp image.

Use a piece of scrap paper to mask the top half of the card, I always use a torn edge as I like the ragged
look. Cover the botom half completely with Versamark ink or similar and then stamp the image also using Versamark in the top half. Add Perfect Pearls randomly to all the inked areas making sure no base cardstock shows through on the bottom part. Polish away the excess Perfect Pearls with a large soft brush then ink the stamp again and stamp in the solid area to lift the Perfect Pearls off and create a negative image, which your eye believes is a reflection of the top image. Very simple when you know how but very effective. 

The next two cards use the same products and techniques but with very different stamps. The background is white vellum, I used the weight normally used for Parchmentcraft, inked with Ranger Adirondack Brights Alcohol Inks in Sailboat Blue, Purple Twilight, and Pool. Once the inks were dry  I stamped the Darkroom Door Seasons Greetings Wordblock with Versamark and embossed with WOW Bright White Ultra Fine EP. I cut an aperture and the surrounding frames with my Fiskars Trimmer, it is fiddly the first time but with a bit of practice you will soon be cutting all your own apertures.

This card was made in exactly the same way but stamped with Hero Arts Stunning Sowflakes which gives quite a different look but the light through the vellum on both looks very effective.

This is a very poor photograph, I always have trouble photographing Plastic Paper/acetate so any tips/tricks to improve this would be gratefully received!!

Anyway, the window is Bazzill Plastic Paper or heavyweight acetate which I covered with the same Ranger Alcohol Inks as used in the previous two samples. Once dry I stamped the Hero Arts Stunning Snowflakes in Versamark and embossed with our own brand clear embossing powder. Let the embossing cool then using a clean felt pad and Ranger Alcohol Ink Blending Solution wipe away the background inks leaving the pretty multicoloured snowflakes. I used Spellbinders for the aperture and frame on this one but I think I actually prefer the ones cut with my trimmer. The ribbon embellishment is just a button tied with embroidery cotton and a length of Grosgrain Ribbon from Beresfords.

The final card today is made with Ranger Distress inks in Tumbled Glass, Broken China and Stormy Sky applied with a stippling brush or Ink Applicator to a masked area of the card with snowflakes stamped in Versamark and embossed with clear EP to act as a resist. The stamp set I used was Hero Arts CL551 and you will need to stamp and emboss the baubles from this in the same way onto spare white cardstock, cut out and coloured with the distress inks. I spritzed the background and the baubles with water and Pearfect Pearls to add some lustre and then assembled the card as shown above.

Hope you find the techniques useful.

Back soon with more.

Thanks for looking xx

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Joyful Greetings

As promised, this week I will blog a little round up of the workshop projects that have either proved most popular, or I have had most questions about in store, with very brief instructions. These three projects were a Take One stamp workshop using Hero Arts Joyful Greetings (CL541).

This photo is not very good but I have included it as you can get a better idea of the construction.

. You will need a white cardstock strip 4" x 10" scored at 1", 3", 4" & 6" plus a Bazzill Plastic Paper or heavy weight acetate strip measuring 4" x 7" scored at 1" & 3". I stamped and embossed a snowflake background and base for the snowmen using Versamark and WOW's Neutral Sparkle EP, and the snowflakes on the plastic paper were stamped with Opaque White StazOn - I stamped on the inside of the plastic as you are less likely to smudge the ink when you assemble it. The trees, snowmen and greeting were stamped with Versafine Onyx Black and I added some colour with Tombow pens - the snowmen need to be stamped 11/2" from the edge of a piece of card to allow you to cut a tab for them scored 1/2" from the end. You then simply cut slits in your snowy base where you want to position the snowmen and slide the tabs through sticking the bottom 1/2" to the inside of the box base. Assemble and stick with Ultra Tape or other strong adhesive, then add scraps of patterned card to the back and under the greeting to conceal the sticky tape. The finished card will fold flat into a standard C6 envelope and delight any child - even those of the grown up variety!

The outside of the third card is also very simple, the clever bit is inside and provides a pocket into which you can add a gift card, money or photographs.

All you do is score two extra lines on the card either side of the original fold, fold the original score the opposite way to normal and then fold the new score lines back on this. Cut a piece of plastic (or solid card if you prefer) of the correct width to accomodate your card etc and twice the height of the card, scored and folded in half. Punch holes through the inner spine you created and the clear plastic, tie the pocket in place with co-ordinating narrow ribbon and add a decorative shape folded in half to secure the open side - a couple of ladies in the workshop stamped the Christmas Tree from this set and used that for this which looked lovely.

Again I kept the decoration of this card to a minimum as I wanted the mechanics to be clearly seen. This is a basic slider card which if you think of it as two pieces of card with a tag sliding between it keeps it really simple.

Another not very good photo (must try harder!) but hopefully it lets you see the construction.

To fit a standard C6 envelope you need two pieces of card 11cm by 15cm and a third piece 10cm by 15cm for the sliding tag. On one of the larger pieces create a flap by cutting three sides of a rectangle 1.5cm in from the two long sides and one short side of the piece of card. Complete the rectangle by scoring 1.5cm in from the other short side, and then scoring 1.5cm in from the loose end of the flap you have created and also half way between these two score lines. You will be pleased to hear that you do absolutely nothing to the other large piece as this is the base.

Attach the front top of the sliding tag centrally to the underside of the short end of the flap - the tag should be slightly wider than the flap. Punch a half circle from the opposite short end of the top piece and add 3mm Ultra Tape to the underside of the other three sides of this piece then line this up with the base with the tag between and stick down firmly. You can then decorate as you wish with your greeting revealed as you slide the tag along.

If you have any problems following my rather garbled instructions do feel free to get in touch or drop by the store and I will try to help.

More coming later this week, thanks for looking! xx