Monday, February 29, 2016

Traveling Grad Gift

Hello Hello
How are all you lovelies today? Wonderful and full of wonder I hope. Today I have an extra special piece to share, something I created about a year ago for a very dear girl who was getting ready to graduate high school and then spend a good amount of time over seas on a school trip.
 Can I admit that I was totally and completely jealous without you thinking less of me? I had almost had a very similar trip when I graduated from high school but alas it fell through so admittedly I was a bit green eyed with envy. However simultaneously I was beyond excited for her as I have had the opportunity to travel out of our country and knew of the awe and wonder that accompanies such a journey so I wanted to create something that was just as unique as I knew this trip was bound to be for her.
I started with a balsa box that looks very much like a cigar box and covered it with Tim Holtz's tissue paper. Then as I was deciding what to do I thought perhaps I should not add a whole lot to the top because the balsa wood is a bit more fragile then most wood crafts so I opted for coloring it with some sprays and then adding a Tim Holtz/Sizzix die cut of the world and then a stamped image of a post card that I cut then melted from Shrinky Dink film, the number 15 is for the year of her graduation and her trip to Europe.
Along the back side of the box I used the film strip die cut from Tim Holtz/Sizzix and made it an ending piece at the bottom of the box. Within each of it's frames I used letter stickers and spelled out the word 'MEMORIES'. Typically in projects that I do for home decor I try to finish the back as well that way it won't matter where the piece is displayed it will be eye catching at any angle.
For the inside of this balsa box I kept it quite simple, I painted it with a metallic champagne color and added the two Tim Holtz flash cards that say 'travel' and the'world'. As for all the goodies inside well lets take a look see. 
I added a lot of little bits & pieces that hopefully all made sense to my girl. First and foremost I made her a mini book from a Tim Holtz mini kit and although mine has quite a bit added to it, the kit it's self is awesome and comes with a ton of elements but I'll share that book in a separate post.
So for right now first and foremost there are these two little mini journals. I made two booklets since she was to be there for two weeks and for each day I made two pages of journal lines for her to jot down the really cool stuff that she didn't want to forget. Although I am not near the traveler that I'd like to be, I've done enough to know that over time you start to forget things that you never thought possible so it is important to document them while they are still in your mind.
So this is what the inside looks like, for each day of the week there is a mini file that has two pages of journal lines.
In between the files I left blank so that a photo or ephemera could be added to help keep the memories even more alive, my thought is that a Starbucks receipt or the sticker from her cup would be perfect here, or possibly the tag from a new piece of clothing..?
Altogether this is what they both look like from a top view.

The next piece I included was a burlap drawstring bag and although I added a few more of the Shrinky Dinks I made using some Tim Holtz/Sizzix dies I thought that this would be a great place for little trinkets...coins, flattened eruos (similar to our flattened penny machine thingys), a charm or whatnot.
Another piece I added in was a creation of mine that I did for the pure joy of it. Like myself, this dear girl loves coffee and so I couldn't resist making her a little mini coffee booklet as well. I think there are only 5 or 6 pages in this little guy and they are all blank but I figured something will spark a thought while she's having coffee and maybe that'll be just the thing for her to jot down in this guy.
You never know.
Another piece I made was this little ensemble of charms and tags. I used a 7 Gypsies stamp set to make the paper tags and aside from two actual charms, I made the key and lock charms using the Shrinky Dink film and a Tim Holtz/Sizzix die once again then using Rub 'n Buff colored them both an antique gold. How freakin' cute is that anyways...seriously.
When I saw this Jolee's Boutique Passport I knew it was a must. Besides being totally awesome all by it's self it was a great way to add in another journal spot, lots of pages to document the journey.
As I got more and more involved with this I kept trying more and more crazy ideas. This is definitely one of those ideas...I can't tell you what it is because I don't know, I just made it - thought it looked cool enough - tossed it in with all the rest of the pieces. I figured my girl would know what to do with it...even if not...what the heck.
The last piece that I created had more to do with the other portion of her gift. We got her a gift certificate to Persnickety Prints, my favorite on-line photo printing company. Normally I print at home but every once in awhile it's nice to have a whole bunch done at once and not have to do-it-myself so this is who I go to, if you don't know should because in so far - they are awesome I think. 
Anyways the last piece I created was for photographs printed at either a 4 x 6 size or a 5 x 7 size with a photo sleeve to store them in. Reason being is because the mini book I made (that I will share later) will only fit photos 3 x 3 or smaller and I know for a fact that there will be some she'll want larger than a 3 x 3. Plus it's nice when you can keep all the pieces from your trip together in one place I figured this would certainly help in that regard. 

So there you have it...
Any thoughts or questions?
Check out the video and hopefully that will answer them for you but feel free to comment me if you have anything further and I'll be happy to respond. Sure hope you enjoyed this piece it is most definitely one of my favorites.
And as always thank you for stoppin' in and takin' a peek. 
Have a great day!

just B

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Canvas Word Play

Hello Hello
I am back again today to share with you the second piece I made for my sister-in-law and again I will apologize for the photo quality, they were poorly done and I only have me to blame.
 As I mentioned in yesterday's post I was trying some new ideas for a mixed media piece and the inspiration for this one actually came from a graphic art print that a good friend of mine has hanging in her home so I attempted to copy the idea but with a mixed media approach.
My first thought was to get a list of words that described Jen's life and things she loves so...if you can imagine all the words that you would use to describe your life and things you love, you'd probably have a fairly decent list I'd imagine.
The next step was to decide how to spell them out: was I to use sticker letters, die cut letters, chipboard, or an assortment-also was I going to use die cut words or not. I went with die cut letters and words using several of Tim Holtz's dies to accomplish this overwhelming task...and I am not kidding when I say 'overwhelming'.  Cutting out letter after letter then adding in the words...well it took forever it seemed like but that was only the beginning because once that was done then the trick was to figure out how to arrange them all so that they fit on my canvas, being that this was my first attempt at anything like this my canvas was rather small, I think 11 x 7...? 
Then, as if up to this point hadn't already been a pain-in-the-arse, I had to figure out how to adhere them all down...let me tell you, adhering them down letter by letter and trying to keep them lined up properly was another major pain-in-the-arse. But all is well that end's well and well...what do you think...did this one end well? I rather think so and although quite a lot of work is involved, I'm looking forward to creating one of these pieces for my own home, maybe just a bit larger though.
So you are wondering if Jen liked her canvas piece...I think she liked it very much, in fact a good friend of hers has requested I make one for her birthday...humm? Maybe I will but you'll just have to wait and see.
Thanks for stoppin' in and I hope you have a great day!

just B

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Circa 1975

Hello Hello
How is everyone doing today? I am good and finally getting a new post up for all of you. I will apologize in advance though for the photos, they are not very good. I was in a hurry when I took them and it was already night time outside so the light in my brother's kitchen wasn't quite enough but anyhow...
So my sister-in-law turned 40 last year and as I was trying to figure out what to get her for her birthday (that wouldn't totally suck because turning 40 a thought crossed my mind and one I knew I had to try immediately and quite honestly I LOVE the way it turned out. 
I am by no means a MM artist yet...keyword being 'YET'...I will however at some point master the form to my own understanding of it and will in the process of practicing attempt any kind of idea that strikes my fancy. This project just happens to be one in a number of different attempts that I have made over the course of a year or so.
I started with a wood letter J that I picked up @ Target and then began my process with tissue paper first to add a layer of texture, then I added on the year of my sister-in-law's birthday with some heavy duty adhesive because I didn't want the numbers to fall off over the years. My next item to add on were the flowers. I used several different sizes but because my photos are poorly taken I didn't get the details documented like I would've liked. Once all of these pieces were adhered and completely dry the next step was to cover the entire piece with white gesso. I may have done two coats but I can not remember for sure. I let the entire piece dry overnight before I did anything else to it.
The final touch was adding the color sprays, my colors of choice are some of my favorites but more so my sister-in-laws favorites as well and being that this was for her I wanted it to be a piece she would enjoy for a long time to come. As a final touch I added on the Tim Holtz philosophy tag 'Journey' because ultimately that is what this life is right? A journey to find one's self no matter where you find yourself.  
Thanks for stoppin' in!
Have a great day

just B