Thursday, 1 June 2017

Bags of Cork!

Hi Everyone

Here's the instructions for how to create the small cork leather bag I promised Hochanda viewers on my last show...

Cork Leather Sheet (Marron) 45 x 35 cm (3370600)
Cork Tape 5mm x 100 cm  (3374005)
Cork Tape 10mm x 100 cm (3374010)
Cork Tape 20mm x 100 cm (3374020)
Sewing Machine & Thread
Wonder Clips & Pencil
Small piece of Mountboard
Scissors, Knife, Ruler & Cutting Mat

Step 1. Cut a 7 cm strip from the long edge of a piece of cork leather. Cut 2 x 18cm long pieces from the strip and from both pieces cut a 5 mm square from two corners (see photo).

Step 2. Mark the centre of the large cork piece and the middle of the two side gussets. Place the side pieces on the main piece, wrong sides together, lining up the marks and the side edges.

Step 3. Sew approx 5mm in from the edge along the bottom of each gusset.

Step 4. Position the 5mm cork tape approx. 25mm from the edge of the short sides of the bag. (You can use the 20mm tape as a guide if desired.) Sew down the middle of the 5mm tape, securing the ends with back stitching. Trim the ends flush with the Marron cork.

Top Tip: When sewing the tapes in position across the top of the bag make sure you overhang the tape at either end as it tends to travel a little whilst sewing. This will stop it appearing to be too short at the edges.

Step 5. Cut the 10mm cork tape in half. Position the ends approx. 3cm from the side edges, butting them up to the 5mm tape.

Step 6. Sew the ends in position with a square of stitching going onto the 5mm tape to firmly secure the handle ends. (See photo)

Step 7. Sew the 20mm tape along the top edge of the bag on either side, trimming the ends as necessary.

Step 8. Line up the side seams with the gusset on either side and sew them approx. 5mm from the edge.

Step 9. You will need to finish the corners by hand as they will be too tight for the sewing machine.

Step 10. Cut a piece of card 27 x 6.5 cm to help shape the base of the bag.

There are four different cork leather designs available: Marron is the only dark one so you get a great contrast with the cork tapes, but there are also Granulo, Mosaic and Stripes if you prefer a lighter coloured bag.

Cork is also available as paper and fabric (The fabric is called Tissue but it is definitely fabric with a woven backing and not tissue.) Both the leather and fabric can be hand washed and ironed on a low setting.

Happy Crafting!

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Creaflexx film from Efco

Hi Everyone

I've just realised I never posted images of the Creaflexx samples I created for the efco stand at Stitches this year - duh! I think my injured shoulder is affecting my brain!

Creaflexx is a film which is malleable when heated and hardens, retaining its shape, when cool. You can rework it if necessary by reheating it. It can be cut with scissors or a knife and can be shaped around heat-resistant surfaces. (It can even be diecut by some of the stronger dies e.g. the thick dies from Sizzix.) It is available as transparent and white sheets both of which can be coloured using various media e.g. paints, inks etc. As you have to work it whilst hot it is advisable to work on a heat-resistant surface and to wear thin cotton gloves to protect your hands.

As I will be demonstrating a tiny glimpse of the world of possibilities open to crafters when using Creaflexx on Hochanda TV on 25th May I thought I had better upload some photos as inspiration for everyone. So here goes... 

Creaflexx Flower

Alcohol Inked Flower Earrings
(coloured with alcohol inks)

Creaflexx Flower

Creaflexx Flower Ring
(coloured with pearl acrylic)

White Creaflexx Frame Embellishment
(coloured with acrylics)

Creaflexx Bangle
(coloured with tissue paper & Mod Podge)

Creaflexx Gift Bag
(coloured with iZink inks)

Creaflexx Gift Bag (reverse)
(decorated with transparent Creaflexx 
coloured with alcohol inks)

White Creaflexx Box Embellishments
(coloured with acrylics)

White Creaflexx Feather Necklace
(decorated with a napkin)

Creaflexx Poppy
(coloured with alcohol inks)

Creaflexx Flower Pin
(coloured with alcohol inks)

Creaflexx Poppies

New Baby Gift Box
(Creaflexx used to support stamped images & diecuts)

These are just a few ideas of what you can create using Creaflexx. It doesn't matter whether you're into card making, scrapbooking, jewellery making or general arts & crafts I'm sure you'll find a use for Creaflexx! For instance you could even make a suit of armour from it...

I will also be demonstrating Efco's Starshine film which is another fab product...

I hope you can join me on 25th May for the Creaflexx and Starshine show!

Happy Crafting!

Friday, 21 April 2017

Metal Embossing on Hochanda TV

Hi Everyone

It's been a busy couple of months since my last post. I had my first day of Hochanda shows for over a year - yay! :) I had a lovely time showing everyone the joys of Cernit polymer clay and Efco's fabulous Texture Mats. And so far, my shoulder is holding up - yay again!

Anyhoo, tomorrow I will be back at the studios again and this time I will be sharing Metal Embossing with Hochanda viewers at 10am.

It's such a versatile craft as it can be used to create wall art, and other home decor projects as well as for card making and scrapbooking. You can create your own designs or use stencils and embossing folders and once embossed, you can colour the metal with a variety of media including glass/ceramic paints, alcohol inks, acrylics, Pébéo Prisme and Moon paints. 

Coloured aluminium foils can be sanded back once embossed to create distressed or two tone effects!

Here's the instructions for how to create the card above...

1. Diecut a piece of coloured aluminium foil.

2. Place the foil face down on the acrylic sheet and lay your stencil over the top, fixing it in position with a piece of low tack tape. Trace around the edges of each area of your design with a pointed teflon tool.

3. Flip the metal and stencil over and rub over the metal with the paper tool.

4. Still on the acrylic sheet, use the point of the paper tool to push out the areas of the design.

5. Use the pointed teflon tipped tool to trace around the edges of each area.

6. Flip the metal and stencil over to check that you have embossed every area completely.

7. Once you are happy with the embossing, gently sand the raised surface of the metal to remove the colour.

8. Fill the back with silicon glue to protect your embossing and to stick it to your card.

Of course you can just run the aluminium sheets through your die cutting machine as you would with card. It works beautifully with embossing folders as can be seen in the card below - the background was created using green foil and an Efco embossing folder and the flowers and leaves were diecut using a Spellbinder's die set, then coloured with alcohol inks before being embossed by hand.

There really is no end to the possibilities of what you can decorate with embossed metal - a bird box, a wooden box...

I hope that has given you a little inspiration and perhaps encouraged you to dip your toe in the art of metal embossing.

For more information check out the Creative Toobox YouTube channel. (The videos are in German but you can see how the various tools are used.)

Another great video which I'm sure will inspire you to create beautiful embossed pieces of art is by Metal Artist Elitia Hart - click here to view her Introduction to Metal Embossing YouTube Video.

Well that turned into a bit of a long post! I will be putting a couple of downloadable metal embossing project sheets onto the website in the next few days for those who prefer to be able to print out instructions.

Happy Crafting!

Fee x

Saturday, 25 February 2017

Chalk Book Cover

Hi Everyone

Well it's been a while since my last post... mainly due to a shoulder injury which has stopped me crafting completely. This was me last October - do you like my festive fashion accessory?...

I can't believe it's been almost 5 months of no crafting, blogging or project sheets - sheer torture!  At last I am finally (albeit slowly) getting back into the craft studio - yay! :)

I had planned to bring you some festive projects before Christmas last year but I found trying to type with one hand drove me around the bend with frustration and pain, but at last I'm back to my usual touch typing (in small bursts)... woohoo! So here's a quick little project for anyone who fancies creating their own chalkboard book cover...

Materials needed:
Notebook (15 082 01)
Chalk Fabric (34 650 50)
Ribbon (12 714 16)
Fox Button (11 747 80)
Craft Knife, Mat & Ruler
UHU Kraft Glue
Strong Double-Sided Tape & Scissors
Needle and Thread
Decorative Papers
(Efco Product codes in brackets)

Step 1. Cut a piece of Chalk fabric approximately 36 x 24 cm. 

Step 2. Stick a piece of double-sided tape along the ring bound edge, wrapping the ends around to the inside of the cover.

Step 3. Stick one long edge of chalk fabric along the double-sided tape.

Step 4. Pulling the fabric taut, cut and remove the top corner from the chalk fabric. 

Step 5. Stick two strips of double-sided tape to the top edge of the fabric and, pulling it taut, stick it in position. (Two strips will give you extra security.)

Step 6. You can sew the fox button embellishment on at this point should you so wish. (Alternatively you can stick it in position with glue at the end.)

Step 7. Trim the bottom corner from the chalk fabric.

Step 8. Stick the bottom flap in position with more double-sided tape, pulling it taut as you go. Stick 3 strips of double-sided tape to the side flap for extra security.

Step 9. Fold the side flap over, keeping the fabric taut, and stick it firmly down.

Step 10. Apply a fine line of UHU down the edge of the chalk fabric, making sure that the glue touches both the fabric and the card book cover. (This will help add extra security stopping the fabric from slipping on the tape.) Stick the ribbon trim (approx 36cm) over the edge of the fabric. Leave it a few moments until stuck before wrapping the ends around the edge of the cover to the inside and sticking the ends in position.

Step 11. To finish or neaten the inside you can stick the first page to the inside of the cover with more double-sided tape. Alternatively you can use offcuts of scrapbook papers to decorate the inside and cover the ends of the fabric and ribbon at the same time.

Then all that is left is to decide what you want to use your new notebook for and what you want to write on the cover. One idea is to use it for daily positive affirmations...

Happy Crafting! :)