Brushos, Ellen Vargo

Tag for a swap… brusho feature

I decided to make brushos the feature of the tag I made for this month’s UK stampers forum swap.

I used the black brusho to create all the different layers on this card and some of them were on gesso and some using emboss resist. All in all a fun combo of showing off the fab brusho crystals in my favourite colour… black!

Happy crafting!


Baked Texture embossing powder, Darcy, Deco art fluid acrylics, Ellen Vargo, Hot Picks, Washi tape

Next circle journal page

I had to do the other side of the journal page that I shared yesterday and chose a completely different colour scheme.

I chose to cover even less of the background with paint and instead layered up some papers and washi tape to create the main base and then added some paints to it. I also added rub ons and some doodles.

Then I assembled lots of layers for under the main image of the Darcy heart.

I chose to use some neon pink painted card and some alcohol ink coloured vellum along with some copper thread. I heat embossed the heart onto some painted paper and then added gold pen around the edge to give it a gilded look.

This more junk journal approach really spoke to me when I made it… and contrasted lots to the previous page.

I also have a little extra for Hazel as I made a little piece for inside the envelope too…

This is again very different from the other pages. I really wanted to play with the Chunky Rust embossing powder from Seth Apter. This gave me the perfect opportunity.

First I created an earthy and rustic backgroynd with paints and stamping. Then I added the lino print style house onto another piece of painted paper.

I then took a piece of card and added lots of layers of the rust embossing on it. I also added more of it to the panel in a more organic way around the edges. Love how this looks.

So overall three very different pieces of art for Hazel in her cool journal.

Happy crafting!


Distress oxide ink, Ellen Vargo, Emma Godfrey, fresco finish paints, Paperartsy, Lin Brown

Paperartsy playing

I decided after the Lynne Perella play I shared the other day to make some more Paperartsy themed birthday cards.

This time I chose to play with Distress Oxides and the fun Ellen Vargo carved flowers.  I love the linocut appearance of these. 

I started with making two backgrounds… both different to each other but both fun to make. Then on a separate panel of cardstock I made the tags. The top one was a scrap of cardstock I had already painted with a layer of fresco finish paints and I decided to heat emboss the tag and the flower. The bottom one I did a watery layer of distress oxide using the same colours as the background.

I raised the tags on foam tape to give dimension and added some scraps of ribbon to the tags. 

Both sentiment and the tag shape are Emma Godfrey stamps. 

Happy crafting!


Canvas and Mixed Media art, Distress oxide ink, Ellen Vargo

Spring journal page


I have more distress oxide fun to share today. This is a journal page I made in response to the theme of spring and Holland. It is the closest I get to a tulip! 

The page is in my Dylusions journal and I had a fair amount of product on the page already wiped off from other projects. 

It has some texture paste and some paints and inks I think. I wanted to use my new distress oxides though and so decided to put them on straight onto the page. 

This created some blocks of colour… to which I needed to add water to move them and oxidise them.   

Once I had done the initial water spray I dried the page and then started adding more ink using the smooshing packaging application that Missy Widden uses in her YouTube videos. This softened and blended the colours and the beautiful oxide inks give such a pretty and chalk type look when they have been wet and dried.

Now time for the focal image. I used the flower stamps from Paperartsy and after stamping in archival I watercoloured using the distress oxide ink. 

I finished the page off with a sticker quote and some rub ons and doodling. I also flicked some black ink onto the page and added little white lines using gesso. 

Love how gentle this page ended up.  

Happy crafting! 


Brushos, Ellen Vargo, Masks/Stencils

Happy belated birthday Darcy!

Last weekend was Darcy’s birthday but with one thing and another I was late making her a card. I finally got there though and this is what I made. 

I will go through the process for this below but I must admit there are 6 atcs not yet finished that go alongside this! 

I decided to have another go at the masks and texture paste idea for the Paperartsy blog challenge that Ingrid had inspired me with.  

The starting point was a piece of dsp which I had cut a chunk out of for another project. Then some patterned tissue adhered to it. 

Next the modelling paste through a stencil.  The stencil is a Clarity stencil and definitely counts as a mask in my book! 

Whilst the paste was still drying I added Brushos and water to blend them. I chose ultramarine, purple, violet and prussian blue.  Then I left it to dry. 

Once dry I cut 6 panels for atc and a panel for Darcy’s card. 

I dry brushed the panel with some gesso to tone down the colour a little. I then decided to outline the texture with a white gel pen. Then I added a strip of ribbon and adhered it to a card blank.

Now for the feature image.  I chose a flower stamp and stamped it onto book print three times.  I added Brusho scarlet and violet to each of them and then decoupaged them as three layers. 

I finished with a bow and the sentiment and a little doodling. 

Love how this came out.  I love the texture and the pigment variations and the layers I got with the flower. Hopefully Darcy doesn’t mind she received it a bit late! 

Happy crafting!


Artful Days Goodie Box, Ellen Vargo, Hot Picks, Inktense, Derwent, Kim Dellow, Lin Brown, Masks/Stencils, PATWITS circle journal, Washi tape

Jules’ patwits circle journal¬†

Oh I am so behind on this project … I had the lovely Jules’ journal for weeks before I got started on it….in fact at least two weeks after I should have sent it on its way to the next person… ah well better late than never! 

So I chose a spread and started with a layer of book print and washi tape and masking tape creating texture a plenty. 

Next a layer of gesso to blend the different papers together. 

Then a sprinkling of bistre (just like Brusho but more coarse) in brown.  This came from the Artful Days goodie box I got a month or so ago and the book print made me reach for it. This was taken whilst it wad very wet. I knew with the gesso it would take on a creamier colour though so I knew the end result would be paler.

I love the way the puddles form on the page and react differently to the different surfaces.  I also love the splashes that spraying the way created too. I also know not to fall in love with it at this stage though as this is only a layer in the page… plenty more to go! 

Skip forward a day and the page is dry and time to attack it again! This time stamping and some paint and some ink. 

I kept adding more and more layer using ink and paint and stamps and stencils. 

Time to add the final pieces… and a title.  I knew I wanted go use the keys from the Artful Days goodie box. I added these and the title to the left hand side of the page and then made a little layered section on the right using more of the Bistre powder this time in with some glass bead gel and corrugated card and a piece of patterned paper.  

This was it when it was still wet. 

Love the colours i chose for this…. and how the page emerged without much prodding. 

Happy crafting! 


Canvas and Mixed Media art, Ellen Vargo, fresco finish paints, Paperartsy, Hot Picks, JOFY, Kim Dellow, Masks/Stencils, PATWITS circle journal, Seth Apter (PA)

PATWITS circle journal… Hazel’s journal

Yes I am back with another journal page. This time it was the turn of Hazel who I recently had the pleasure of meeting in person at the Seth Apter day.she has constructed a fab junk journal using different types of paper and Cardstock.  

I chose a piece of textured paper with really cute ladybirds punched on the edges.

I started adding paint (Coral, Haystack, Chalk, Guacamole, Midnight, Mahogany and Mermaid) and before I knew it a page had come together. 

I used a mixture of stencils and stamps and the feature is built using the gorgeous Kim Dell own stamps.

You can probably tell I also went a bit mad with both a white paint pen and some coloured paint pens. I was pretty much Seth inspired after the fabulous weekend and thought Hazel would appreciate it!

The page is designed so there is a fold and so I decorated this to match…

… although obviously not the same.

Then the other side I did another Seth Apter style project on a little canvas board and adhered this to the back. I used the same palette of paints but the page has a very different feel.

I love the little JoFy birds I added as the features.

I now have one more page to do in another journal… wonder how that will turn out!

Happy crafting! 


Ellen Vargo

Let’s have a laugh!¬†

A lovely little art card I made for a friend organising a swap. 

I used book print and paint on my palette for another project.  I then used the fab Paperartsy stamps and a little sentiment stamp set.  Finally added some enamel accents and mounted it on a fun little red card blank. 

Lovely… just like the recipient! 


Ellen Vargo, Hot Picks, Inktense, Derwent, Masks/Stencils

Doodling for my Paperartsy journal

This year I am following all the challenges on the Paperartsy blog and making a page in a journal just for these challenges.   The latest theme is doodles and scribbles and I have been loving all the inspiration.

I decided for my page to use a stencil as the guide for my doodles and chose the star stencil which I got with a magazine.   I also decided to try with a masking fluid for the first time ever.  So I drew the stars from the stencil in pencil, then painted them with masking fluid.  I then decided to go for inktense blocks as my medium of choice.


After adding the colours to the page (2 different blues) and blending them with water, I then used a hot picks stamp and a block to stamp the text randomly over the background.  I also wanted a hill side for the bottom so used black gesso and a round sponge applicator for that.  I then wiped the sponge off lightly on the page to provide some darker spots.

Next I added some white gesso stamping with an Ellen Vargo stamp.  It was then time to rub away the masking fluid.

Lesson number 1 with masking fluid is that you need to apply it thicker than I did so you get full masking effect.  Lesson number 2 is don’t take it off when the paper is still wet as it will rip!

So yes it wasn’t exactly successful but it still shows some star shapes so I am happy enough.  Next to start on the doodles and scribbles!   First a purple ink fountain pen on some of the points of the stars… then I moved onto my black pen.


I doodled round the page, the stars, the quote I added.  I also got out a white paint pen and added doodles and scribbles with that too.

I decided the stars needed shine too (and to cover up the messed up paper from removing the masking fluid too early).  So out came stickles for the smaller stars and glass bead gel for the large star.  This was how it looked before it had all dried!

The next day the sun came out and made my stars very sparkly!



I love how the purple ink has bled with the stickles and gel and created some nice accents for the stars.

Really happy with this page… and as next month’s art journal session with my friends is themed as Wishes this is also a perfect sample for that too!

Happy crafting !


Canvas and Mixed Media art, Ellen Vargo, fresco finish paints, Paperartsy, Hot Picks, Kim Dellow, Lin Brown, Masks/Stencils, PATWITS circle journal, Spectrum noir pencils

My first Patwits circle journal page… second circle!

So today I get to share with you a journal page (a front and a back) I made for Linda in her amazing shape journal.  She constructed a journal held together with a nut and bolt in the middle and all the pages are different shapes and colours.

I chose this page made with a kraft colour…


I started with a layer of stamping.


I used Hot Picks stamps and brown archival ink to add some pattern.  Then I added more stamping using the Ellen Vargo splodgy circles.  Then I added paint!


Lots of lovely warm and bright colours to go with the colours Linda had chosen for her covers.  Then more stamping, this time used paints to add more pattern.


Now time to add some tape and white paint and brown accents through stencils and more stamps.


Here is how I left it for a day to decide on how I wanted to finish the page now I had plenty of colour and pattern going on.

I decided to stick with the line cut flowers and create a BIG flower as my main image.

First a layer of stamping in Cheesecake paint…
Then stamped the others in paint onto book paper.
After this picture I added distress stain on top so that it had two shades of colour. After cutting them out I then started adding them to the page.
I also added some outlines with distress stain and a paintbrush.

I then added the sentiment from the same stamp set and then sprayed the whole page with water to soften the lines.

Next I added some dots of liquid pearls to add some texture and bling.



So this was side one… time to flip it over and complete the second side! And time to change up the colour scheme.
Bora Bora and white gesso are the first layer, applied by fingers and blending them together.

Next some stamping and a bit more colour and some stencilling using South Pacific and Taupe, some Hot Picks stamps and a Darcy stencil.

Next I decided to add a focal feature on some other layers… so a piece of canvas painted with Nougat and South Pacific.

Then a piece of cream card painted with the leftover paints on the palette and a coat of crackle glaze.
image Once it was dry I added the top layer of nougat.

Love that crackle!

Stamped the focal image from the Hot Picks stamps in Taupe and the cut and tore the image and layered it onto the canvas. Decided it needed another soft layer… out came some muslin and the sewing machine.
Whilst the machine was out I added some scruffy sewing to some patterned paper circles I had die cut.

I added paint and some stencilling to these and then chose my favourite two to add to the layout.
Love how the elements work together.

Added buttons for the flower centres threaded with twine and then some pearl accents for the stencilled flowers.


Next I chose my quote and stamped that with some alpha stamps onto Very Vanilla cardstock. I also added some transparent gloss texture paste through a Emma Godfrey stencil… just some dots.

I used spectrum noir pencils to add some final bits of shading and colour for the words.


Also added some pearl accents round the centre hole to finish it off as it looked a little rough on this side.

I absolutely loved working on these pages. The central hole added an interesting twist of whether to ignore it or build from it. Also loved that the two sides are so different.

So onto the next person the journal goes and looking forward to starting on my next journal in the circle!

Happy crafting!