December 29, 2011

ATCs - Beyond Trading: Vintage Memories

Christmas is a season when thoughts often turn nostalgic. Even if vintage Christmas images are not part of your memories, this classic box will provide a unique way to display ATC treasures. Grab your Tim Holtz™ Distress Inks, and in no time at all this sophisticated project will add to your Christmas decorations.
2011 12 LRoberts 1 ATCs Beyond Trading Christmas Memory Box
You'll find directions for this project and the ATC below on page 104 of the December 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things. Stamp sets are by Oxford Impressions (Sleigh Bells, Winter Snow, Season of Giving, and St. Nicholas.) Ranger® products also include Archival™ Ink, as well as Tim Holtz™ Adirondack® Alcohol Inks and Mixatives.
2011 12 LRoberts 7 ATCs Beyond Trading Christmas Memory Box A Visit with Santa Stand Alone ATC

Christmas Spirit Recipe Set

2011 12 LRoberts 02 Christmas Spirit Recipe Binder
Much of the time, I begin a project with an eye toward the end result. I may have a plan in mind, but materials sometimes create a detour. Such was the case with this recipe album. As usual, my dollar store had several styles of photo albums to choose from, but I particularly liked this one, a ring binder with a linen-like cover. I decided to embrace the imperfections and see where they would lead. The result may not be what I first intended, but I love the effect. Another case in which experimentation was half the fun.
2011 12 LRoberts 01 Recipe Clipboard
After completing the recipe album, I decided that a mini clipboard would be a perfect match. You'll find directions for both of these projects on pages 88-89 of the December 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things. You'll need Ranger® Tim Holtz™ Distress Ink and the following Claudine Hellmuth products: Studio Creative Layers clear stamps; Studio Gesso; Studio Paints.

Stamped Holly Mug & Gift Tag

Travel mugs for personalization are available in a variety of sizes and shapes. While I was fortunate to find a bargain at the local dollar store, similar mugs are readily available in craft stores as well as specialty shops. This is a project that is easily adaptable to any occasion or skill level with guaranteed satisfaction by the recipient.
2011 12 LRoberts Happy Holidays Stamped Travel Mug and Tag
You'll find directions for this bonus online project (December 2011 Crafts 'n things) here. For best results, you'll need Ranger® Inkssentials™ Gloss Paper, Archival™ Ink, and Adirondack® Dye Ink. The Season of Giving and St. Nicholas stamp sets are by Oxford Impressions.

August 27, 2011

Journals of Love for Cancer Patients

2011 10 LRoberts Journals of Love Belief Composition Book

The October 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things offers an abundance of inspiring techniques to fill your autumn days. In this season of giving thanks, the annual "Crafting for a Cause" section can help you remember to bless others with your creativity. This year, you'll find four worthy causes you can make your own: Charity Wings, Operation Write Home, Breast Cancer Research, and the cause I wrote about on page 95, Journals of Love for Cancer Patients.

When I wrote about this project in Crafts 'n things in October 2010, I was amazed at the interest. The response was overwhelming, and I am grateful for the opportunity to update readers and hopefully encourage others to make this project their own. I hope that you'll pick up the magazine and read the heartwarming stories about the journals and other causes.

Journal Background Paper: Claudine Helmuth Studio Creative Layers Stamps; Claudine Hellmuth Studio Paints; Claudine Hellmuth Studio Gloss Multi Medium; Inkssentials™ White Opaque Pen; Adirondack® Archival Pigment Pens

ATC’s: Beyond Trading – Shed New Light

As a child, each Halloween we enjoyed making a "lantern" from black construction paper by folding the paper in half lengthwise and cutting from the center out. Those memories inspired this windowed lantern, a perfect holder for these seasonal ATCs.

2011 10 LRoberts ATC Lantern 1 Trick or Treat and Owl Loves Candy

2011 10 LRoberts ATC Lantern 3 Owl Loves Candy and Cemetery Boo

2011 10 LRoberts ATC Lantern 5 Black Magic Skeleton

"Beware" of this stand alone ATC.

2011 10 LRoberts ATC Lantern Beware of the Haunted House Single ATC
You'll find the directions for these Halloween creations on pages 74-75 of the October 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things. These great stamps are from Oxford Impressions: Halloween Party, Haunted, Trick or Treat, and Wicked. Stamping is easy with Adirondack® Dye Ink and Tim Holtz™ Distress Ink on white gloss Inkssentials™ Surfaces Artist Trading Cards.

July 23, 2011

Steampunk Treasures

I felt like I'd found buried treasure when I discovered this faux leather backgammon set at the thrift store for only $1.00. I knew that I wanted to use steampunk images to decorate the exterior, but the brown surface had to go. Thus began my experiment with materials that generally are not compatible with a synthetic surface, but perseverance and a light hand created the results I was seeking. I love finding inspiration at a bargain price. Here are the results.

2011 08 LRoberts Steampunk Backgammon game front

2011 08 LRoberts Steampunk Treasures Backgammon game open

I love the Oxford Impressions stamps: The Deep, Steampunk Works, and Steampunk Elements. This was a simple transformation with Claudine Hellmuth Studio products, Tim Holtz™ Adirondack® Color Wash, and Archival™ ink. You'll find the details on pages 96 - 97 of the August 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things.

Steampunk Bird Tag

The absurdity of steampunk is one of the things that makes use of the images fascinating. Only the imagination can limit the possibilities. Where else could you find a mechanical bird wearing a top hat?

2011 08 LRoberts Steampunk Treasures Mechanical Bird Tag

You'll find the details on this project from page 97 of the August 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things here. The Steampunk Works stamp set is by Oxford Impressions. All other products are from Ranger ® including the oversized manila tag.

ATCs Beyond Trading: Celebrating the 4th

2011 08 LRoberts ATCs Beyond Trading Tambourine with Strength of America ATC

Have you seen the silhouette image of three children marching in what looks like an improvised parade? If so, you may understand why a red plastic tambourine reminds me of a July 4th celebration. I've seen the image on July 4th T-shirts, and it's always reminded me of childhood days when I marched in the kindergarten "rhythm band." In an era of electronic gadgetry, it may be difficult to imagine the pleasure that children derived in playing simple instruments such as a triangle or wooden blocks and the coveted noisemaker that led our "parades," the tambourine.

The tambourine will always signify celebration in my mind, a perfect backdrop for this ATC featured on pages 82 - 83 in the August 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things. It celebrates the "Strength of America" that is found "in the hearts and souls of its people." (Strength of America stamp from Art Impressions; flag stamp from Rubber Monger)

This artist trading card provides further reminder of the roots of our nation. It brought a little smile to my face to use the Top Hat image from the English PaperArtsy™ company to represent our forefathers.

2011 08 LRoberts ATCs Beyond Trading America America ATC

Ink up to create a red, white, and blue party to honor the birth of a nation! You'll find all the color you need with Ranger® Adirondack® pigment and dye inks.

30 Minute Card: Inspiring Butterfly

Subtle is not a word that I would normally use to describe my stamping style, but the subtlety of this watercolor technique is truly inspiring. No one need know that all that is required is the ability to ink your stamp and mist with water.

2011 08 LRoberts 30 Minute Inspiring Butterfly Card

You'll find the directions for this project from the August 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things, page 78, here. The Inspire Butterfly Collage stamp is from Memory Box. The inks are from Jenni Bowlin's palette. Try this and your friends will believe you’re a fine artist.

June 1, 2011

Exploring Image Transfers: Transparencies

In this third article in my series on image transfers, you'll find one of my all time favorite projects. I've admitted it before. I'm a dollar store junkie. When the canvas placemat found its way into my cart, I justified my "habit" with the knowledge that there are far worse addictions. Little did I dream that this purchase would become a treasured documentation of a vacation memory. With minimal sewing, a cute little tote was the result.

2011 06 LRoberts Exploring Image Transfers Transparency Totoe

Here's the same process applied to the fabric card front. Another great photo - another great memory. An added bonus is the simplicity of the supplies: Claudine Hellmuth Studio Multi Medium Gloss and Extra Time Slow-Dry Medium.

2011 06 LRoberts Exploring Image Transfers Transparency Poppy Card

You'll find the details for this process and these projects on pages 88 - 89 of the June 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things.

ATCs - Beyond Trading: Pop Up Surprise

I love the names of the colors: Stick Candy, Lemon Drops, Chicken Feed, and Cough Syrup to name a few. The colors are delicious as are the paints and inks in Jenni Bowlin's new line of paints and inks for Ranger®. I paired them with Inkssentials™ Sticky-Back Canvas ATCs and the Claudine Hellmuth Studio Creative Layers stamps to create these ATCs and the pop-up surprise card.

2011 06 LRoberts ATCs Beyond Trading Pop Up Surprise Open
2011 06 LRoberts ATCs Beyond Trading Happy Thoughts ATC

You can find the direction to create your own "happy thoughts" on pages 96 - 97 of the June 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things.

April 18, 2011

ATCs - Beyond Trading: Vintage Fairy Images

I didn’t notice when I purchased the trim that one set of beads in the middle of the section was not firmly attached. When I took the beads out of the plastic bag, the droplet fell apart. Sometimes the unexpected enables the imagination to take a giant step, and the broken beads provided that inspiration. Until then, I hadn’t realized that one of the small turquoise beads was actually a heart. The largest bead, why that could be a lantern for a little boy in search of fairies. One bead left, and I knew I would find the perfect spot for it atop a vintage ornament featuring stamps from the Oxford Impressions Fairy Sweets plate.

2011 04 LRoberts ATCs Beyond Trading Believe Octagon Ornamental Box

The ornament box and the ATC below feature Archival™ Ink, Adirondack® Dye and Pigment inks, and lots of Tim Holtz™ products: Distress Ink Pads, Alcohol Inks, Alcohol Ink Metallic Mixatives, and Alcohol Blending Solution. The instructions may be found on pages 84 and 85 of the April 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things®.

2011 04 LRoberts ATCs Beyond Trading Sweet Fairy ATC

Exploring Image Transfers: Paint Glazes

There are times when I really wish that my photography skills were stronger, and this is one of them. The original butterfly photo was spectacular if I do say so myself, but my pictures of the butterfly card and the bird necklace don't begin to do the projects justice. Thank goodness the photographer at Crafts 'n things® doesn't share my limitations. You'll have to check out his much better pictures on pages 86 and 87 in the April 2011. First the butterfly card.

2011 04 LRoberts Exploring Image Transfers Paint Glazes Butterfly Card

The whimsical bird necklace uses the same technique, but what a different effect. Both projects use Claudine Hellmuth Studio Paints and Gloss Multi Medium. While the butterfly was transferred to cardstock, the necklace is made with Claudine Hellmuth Studio Natural Sticky-Back Canvas. I rarely wear jewelry, but this will be an exception!

2011 04 LRoberts Exploring Image Transfers Paint Glazes Whimsical Bird Necklace for print

30 Minute Card Ideas: Butterfly Silhouette Tag

When I look at this tag, I feel like belting out a line from a Julie Andrus number in The Sound of Music: "These are a few of my favorite things." What could make it any better for a stamper than Tim Holtz™ Distress Inks and a great collage image? Only sparkle, and there's lots of it in this tag published on page 73 in the April 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things®. Black Sparkle embossing powder, Sparkle Sunflower Perfect Pearls™, Suze Weinberg's Beadazzles™, lots of Tim Holtz™ Distress™ inks, Stickles™ Glitter Glue, and of course Inkssentials™ Glossy Accents™.
2011 04 LRoberts 30 Minute Butterfly & Flowers Tag

As always, the instructions for 30 Minute projects are online. You can find the details here.

April 17, 2011

Better Backgrounds: A Twist on Bleach

I've always enjoyed working with bleach and never cease to be amazed at how two pieces of identical looking cardstock can produce completely different results. There's magic in the technique!
In these two cards, the magic was enhanced with the new Jenni Bowlin dye inks and Claudine Hellmuth's Studio Extra Time. You'll find all the details here in this April 2011 Crafts 'n things® bonus on-line project.
2011 04 LRoberts Better Backgrounds Twist on Bleach Dragonfly Card
2011 04 LRoberts Better Backgrounds Twist on Bleach Swallowtail Card

March 20, 2011

The All New Crafts ‘n things

If you haven't seen the April issue of Crafts 'n things®, you'll not want to waste any time in finding a copy. I love the added "white space," larger photos, and easy to read instructions. It's all new in look from the cover throughout.

Beginning with this issue, Painting, The Cross Stitcher, and Pack-o-Fun have been rolled in for a larger publication. While I've never been a painter and my cross stitch days are probably in the past, I still find inspiration in these projects. Pack-o-Fun may have targeted inexpensive crafts for children, but I've often found ideas that could be adapted to a different audience by adding a sophisticated twist.

So much fun! So much inspiration!

January 10, 2011

ATCs - Beyond Trading: Steampunk Valentines

Recycling has a much nicer sound than dumpster diving. At least that’s what I claimed when I rescued this heart shaped box on the way to the landfill for the project on page 48 of the February 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things®. What better reuse than turning a box that once held chocolates into a repository for these non-traditional Valentine ATCs.
2011 02 LRoberts ATCs Beyond Trading Steampunk Valentine Heart Display Box
The box and the ATC below were designed with Ranger® products: Claudine Hellmuth Studio Gesso; Archival™ Ink; Adirondack® Dye Ink Pads; Tim Holtz™ Adirondack® Alcohol Inks; Inkssentials™ Glossy Accents™; Adirondack® Acrylic Paint Dabbers.
2011 02 LRoberts ATCs Beyond Trading Steampunk Valentine Eye for You ATC
If you are unfamiliar with the genre, steampunk provides a perfect opportunity to exercise your creativity. When I created this project, Suzanne Melvin of Oxford Impressions had one steampunk plate, Steampunk Elements. (Other plates used in these projects were The Dressmaker, Bonbon, My Story, and Fairy Sweets.) Now, Suzanne has two more exciting steampunk plates, Steampunk Works and The Deep. Two times the ways to create non-traditional Valentines!

Better Backgrounds: Illusions of Lace

If you’ve ever scorched your paper or burnt your fingers when using an iron to create wax paper resist, you’ll love this technique. No heat involved to transfer a lace impression or the die cut image of your choice in these cards found on page 57 of the February 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things®.
2011 02 LRoberts Better Backgrounds From the Heart Card
2011 02 LRoberts Better Backgrounds Vintage Lace Card
With Inkssentials™ Gloss Paper and the addition of Tim Holtz™ Distress Ink, no one will guess how you produced these fabulous results. Use your "resist" as is or add a stamped message from Hero Arts® as I did. The possibilities are limitless, and there's no safety hazard involved.

Exploring Image Transfers: Tape Transformation

Do you remember the first time that you saw heat embossing? It’s still a moment of wonder for me. I had a similar experience years ago when I first watched a demonstration of packing tape transfers. Now, when I share this technique, the reaction is always the same. People can’t believe that the process is so simple. I have to agree.
These projects are the first in a series of three articles on image transfers for Crafts 'n things®. First, a card featuring a stamp by Impression Obsession, Inc. , Hopes & Dreams. Perfect Pearls™ always provide an elegant touch.
2011 02 LRoberts Exploring Image Transfers Hopes & Dreams Card

Below, you'll find a necklace featuring patterned paper by DCWV and stamps by Hero Arts®, Manuscript Background and a simple heart. (The Hearts Ink and Stamp Set. is no longer listed, but a similar stamp is available in the From the Heart set.) I'm not a jewelry maker by any means, but this is a project that anyone could complete.

2011 02 LRoberts Exploring Image Transfers Beaded Heart Necklace

Want to know more? Pull out your "inky" supplies: Inkssentials™ Gloss Paper; Archival™ Ink; Adirondack® Acrylic Paint Dabbers; Adirondack® Dye Ink Pads; Adirondack® Pigment Inks. You'll find the details on page 50 of the February 2011 issue.

30 Minute Card Ideas: Playful Cherub Tag and Tiers of Cupcakes

2011 02 LRoberts 30 Minute Tiers of Cupcakes Card
It was similar to an out of body experience. The only reason that I know that I made this card is that my name is under the picture on page 32 of the February 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things®. You wouldn't describe my stamping style as "cute," but this tiered cupcake card is cute and was fun to complete. The stamps are both by Memory Box, Tiers of Cupcakes and Sweet Cupcake, with color provided by Adirondack® Dye Ink Pads. The patterned paper is from the DeLovely Mini Deck by Cosmo Cricket.

The mischievous cherub on page 30 definitely looks more like something I would create. Tim Holtz™ Adirondack® Alcohol Inks and Alcohol Blending Solution combine with Suzanne Melvin's Oxford Impression Bonbon plate for a spirited Valentine tag.

2011 02 LRoberts 30 Minute Playful Cherub Tag
Both card and tag use Inkssentials™ Gloss Paper and Archival™ Ink. The details for 30 Minute projects are available on line. You'll find the cupcake card here and the cherub tag here.

Cupcake Presentation Box

Have you ever faced this dilemma: Is the present in the box or is the box the present? In this case, the answer to both questions is “yes.” I first saw this concept at one of my favorite places for inspiration, the local dollar store. Although the party favor was small and would only hold a tiny treat, my version, featured on page 74 of the February 2011 issue of Crafts 'n things®, is large enough for a cupcake. Slide off the closure strip and watch my box open!
2011 02 11 LRoberts Cupcake Box Green
2011 02 12 LRoberts Cupcake Box Green Closure Close Up
2011 02 13 LRoberts Cupcake Box Green Closed
2011 02 14 LRoberts Cupcake Box Green Beginning to Open
After you slip off the decorative paper closure to reveal the box contents, you’ll want to reassemble the package for display. Here are two more examples.
2011 02 20 LRoberts Cupcake Box Striped2011 02 30 LRoberts Cupcake Box Pink Flower Circles
While sturdy enough for cupcakes, this box would provide elegant packaging for any treat or treasure. The Cosmo Cricket patterned paper is part of the DeLovely Collection. I know that you'll agree these projects are lovely!