Monday, 22 December 2008

Flu and all that....

Oh my. It's been a bit crazy here for the last fortnight! Both DH and I came down with the dreaded lurgy, and are only just feeling normal, aside from a nasty cough that just won't shift!

Despite that, I've managed to get pretty much all my cards and presents out on time, and have taken part in an Ornament swap on Aunty's Forum

I made this for Pauline.....

....using a basic beaded net pattern by Jill Oxton, to which I added my own design of drops.

In return I got this from Lynne...

which I just love and have got on my Christmas tree.

I so enjoyed doing the purple one, I decided to make another one for my friend Debs. It would all have been ok if she'd used purple and silver on her tree this year! But no, she opted for gold and green, so I couldn't use the purple baubles I still had from before. I had to wait until we were fit enough to get the decorations down from the loft, so I could furtle around in the boxes to find a gold bauble with the "right" sort of top (has to have straight sides round the loop, not slanted - sigh!). Luckily we did have a spare one, so I then proceeded to make this.....

I hope she likes it! It took a little bit longer than I'd hoped for, partly because it's bigger than the lilac one! Count the rows of beads - there's 3 rows on the purple, and 5 on the gold.... LOL

Right - I'm off - my ironing board awaits and I have bedlinen to get in the machine ready for the impending arrival of my Mother..... TTFN!

Friday, 5 December 2008

The Big Reveal

Now that the lucky recipient has confirmed receipt of her prize, I can reveal what I actually made for the UK Art Raffle .

The theme was circles, and I kept thinking about what I wanted to do, but kept.... going round in circles.... oh ROFL....

That was until I paid a visit to my local poundstretcher, and there in their shop they had a wooden ornament. Really naff, I should say (though apologies to anyone who loves them). Just a slab of wood painted black with a couple of swipes of gold.

My darling hubby drilled the holes I needed in the wood. I then coated it with grey paint that I'd mixed roughly myself, so it didn't give an even coat - I needed a marbled effect, which I got ever so subtly.

Once that had dried I used some dark grey ink to stamp the images.

First of all I used the Judikins Artifacts Cube - the "stone" side. I used some very dilute white paint (and occasionally, a sakura pen!) to highlight the seams created - almost giving the effect of marbling.

Once dry, I repeated this with the Celtic Knot stamps (all from The Stampsmith (gotta love that sea horse!)) and the Mayan (?) stamps. I'm not sure if the Mayan stamps ARE Mayan - all I know is they're an ancient culture, and I got the stamps off ebay years ago. There's no maker's mark either - so if anyone can identify them, I'd be much obliged!!! I have to say, it's the first time I've used them too, and I'm very impressed (oh, pun) with them.

With these I used a paintbrush with dilute white acrylic paint again, to highlight the outside of the image, or the whole thing in the case of the celtic knotwork. I images it kind of came off more like grafitti!!! I still like how it came out, though.

The base wasn't painted, I left it black for contrast, but I also stamped it with the Artifacts Cube using white Stazon.

All edges were then given a rub with Pewter rub-on.

Once all dry, I gave it a coat of gloss acrylic varnish.

The last question was "what to hang from the holes?" right from the word go, I felt it certainly needed something which was why the holes were drilled in the first place. Then it hit me - many MANY years ago, an ex-boyfriend of mine who was heavily into Star Trek bought me a Bajoran ear cuff. Beautiful. But I like wearing pairs and this was a one off. I still had it - not sure what to do with it, but I hadn't worn it in 15 years. It was sat on a shelf in my craft room, crying out for a special project - and hear it was. Perfect. The only bit I didn't use was the actual cuff. The stones in question are Swarovski crystals, and hematite.

My piece was one of 31; lucky Sheila - very well done to you on your win!

One amusing thing though - before I posted it I took it into work, cos they're always interested in what I've been creating. One guy saw it, picked it up and then gasped... "I thought it was metal - I wasn't expecting it to be so light!"....

And I enjoyed doing this so much, I bought two more to do! Well, at £1 each, it's not a bad price, eh?
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