Category Archives: Off the Grid

Use them or lose them #16 project #2

So this year I have decided to challenge myself to make a set of cards, scrapbook page or journal layout using each of my stamp sets as I know I have some I rarely use! This week I am playing with the Off the Grid background stamp and decided that I needed to see it in art journalling mode to see if changed my mind and became a must keep!

A few weeks ago I had some paint left on my palette from other play and decided to start adding it to a page that already had a fair amount of pattern and stuff applied!   I always add any bits that are leftover from other projects to random places in my journal and this had some paint, ink and glossy texture paste already applied through stencils.


So I added some pink, lime green and pale blue paint.  None of these are expensive paints and all quite translucent which means that all the pattern and other colours are still very visible.  I have no idea at this stage where I am going with this but I am loving the colour and the patterns.

The next time I went to play I decided to make use of some scrap paper I had used underneath an ATC project and as a palette for my paints… I drew some rough circles on the interesting colours and patterns.

Then I cut out the circles and started laying them out in the journal.
Love the contrast between the page and the circles… gorgeous.

I decided it needed more though and decided that circles would be the enduring theme. At the same time as all this play the lovely Helen lost her Mum and this very much was on my mind as I played in the journal… and certainly made me choose the quote for the page.


Anyway…. I smeared some gelatos in circles around the page and then added some gesso to them and created a few others with just gesso.

More gelatos added and smeared around… then time to add some black.

I used some Indian ink and a paintbrush to added the lines around the circles. Love the way this worked, even though it was scary that the black could go very wrong.

Next I added the Off the Grid stamp in archival randomly round the page.


Next I added the paper circles and adhered them with matt medium. I felt they needed more definition so out came the Indian ink again.

I added connecting circles and dots of the ink all around the page and then chose the quote.

I first hand wrote the quote using a fountain pen and purple ink but it didn’t work well enough so back to the ink and paintbrush again.



Love how this page came out and love the totally random way it developed. Love the grid contrast with the circles but still thinking that the stamp needs to go.

Well I suppose this is what this challenge is about … do I really need what I am trying out. And in this case even though I like it, no I don’t need this stamp.

Happy crafting!


Late edit… my friend Chris commented to me that she like the use of white space in this layout… which I hadn’t thought about at the time of posting. Now you might be looking at my layout and thinking where is the white space… well the entire background becomes the white space whilst the circles become the none white space …and guess what the current Paperartsy
blog theme is… yes white space… as Darcy reminded us in the explanation and example post, white space doesnt have to be white, or devoid of pattern! So I am linking this to the challenge over there as an example of non white and not thought through aka unintentional white space!

Use them or lose them #16 Off the Grid

So this year I have decided to challenge myself to make a set of cards, scrapbook page or journal layout using each of my stamp sets as I know I have some I rarely use!

This week I thought I would see where the small background stamp Off the Grid would take me.  I haven’t used this stamp anywhere near as much as I thought I would and no idea why.

I decided to build some backgrounds using it and some gelatos.



The first lot of stamping was using Old Olive ink and then just started building up the gelatos in layers.


A few different colours… and then some more stamping, this time using the gelatos to stamp with.



I left this to dry and grabbed some Stampotique flowers I had stamped back in February when I was at Art from the Heart.  I coloured them with gelatos and cut them out.

I then added some silk thread and a sentiment and edged the panel and the Old Olive mount.  Perfect modern, fun and arty cards.



So what do I think of the stamp? Well even though I love the results of this I could easily have used another background stamp and the grid stamp still doesn’t strike me as one I would grab time and time again (unlike dictionary or hand carved) so I think this might be going in the lose it pile.

Will give it one more play later this week and then decide for sure.

Happy crafting!


Watercolouring the simply sketched!

So I thought I would give my watercolour a little practice with the gorgeous Simply Sketched stamps!



I also added some little grunge elements like Off the Grid and Work of Art stamping to blend the topper into the card, and on the purple one the backing paper was a gelli print! Also loving adding the pearls in such a random manner. I am usually a straight even spaced line kind of person so this random effect is fun to do to be different!

Happy crafting!


Inky birthday time!

Yesterday it was my father in laws 80th birthday… So that required a special card. But 80th birthdays and male cards are not my thing so instead I went all funky with his card!

I used the fab Dylusions ink sprays and some distress inks and a fabulous mask to create the background. I used the Off the Grid stamp and then a clock stamp from a random set I have and embossed it in a mixture of green and blues.

Then with plenty of inking around the edges I mounted it onto Midnight muse. Then I took another piece of white cardstock and stamped Hardwood in some midnight muse which I stamped off and added more distress ink to the edge with my sponge. This was the bottom mount for the card topper.

Then I took some Sahara Sand cardstock and stamped the hardwood stamp and stamped it in Crumb cake and cut out the banner shape. Then some of the fab chevron ribbon in Chocolate Chip (I think) and some bakers twine and created the little embellishment. I added a clock charm … I have a few of these (I have a plan for them!) and I added this to the banner.

Then it was time to add the sentiment so I stamped a couple of tickets… One with the Henry says birthday sentiment, and the other one of the tickets from That’s the ticket set.

Raised the whole topper onto dimensionals and added it to a white 8×8 card blank.


Then did the envelope too… A little inking around the edge and some more cog inking using the mask and Distress Inks.


Hopefully he liked the card I made. He should have received it yesterday and on Sunday we celebrate with him properly!

Happy crafting!


Thursday Treasures! Theme time!

This week we have a theme to be let loose on … This is pretty broad and could be interpreted so many ways!

This is what I did with it!


Can you believe I actually started this page in February at a crop and never got round to finishing it? Well when I decided on the prompt it gave me the perfect push to finish it!

This is a picture of me, aged about 8, on the last day of our family holiday in Menorca, looking miserable as sin at the prospect of the holiday ending! I really was fed up!

I remember these holidays on Menorca with such fond memories and have always liked this picture as an honest capture of me at the time. The picture itself has some colour fades as it was up in a frame as part of a collage my parents had of holiday hoots for many years … So it really is a well loved picture and is a good capture of me as a child!

So as I said I started this layout at a crop in February, then it got put away to be finished another day and in the midst of moving the spare room around and making a craft space it got left!

The dsp is a random one I got in a kit a while ago, and the layout itself was based on a pin I now can’t find. I used a few bits and pieces to decorate the page …
Some framelits dies which Helen had to create the arrows and the little camera embellishment
Off the Grid stamp to give the arrows some colour
Angled corner tag punch for the tags
Hardwood stamp for the texture on the tags
Banner Blast stamps and coordinating punch for the pennants
Stickers from random bits of stash and lots of bits of bakers twine!

All the journalling is hidden on the back of the tags which are kept in the pocket behind the picture panel.

Love this bright page, which picks up on the colours in the photo and contrasts the sad face of childhood when the joy of the holiday comes to an end!

Happy crafting!


Colour my Monday! Melon Mambo!


Happy Monday peeps! Hope you are having a good day!

It is the time of the week when I focus on colour… And this week is a good one! Firstly … It makes me think of Strictly Come Dancing and Dirty Dancing which is never a bad thing in my book, and secondly because it is a fun and BRIGHT colour!


Ok so it’s not the most masculine of colours, but other than that … Who can not be cheered by a bit of Melon Mambo in their lives!

However what to make did stump me for a little while. I started with a piece of Whisper White and decided on making a bit of a grungy type background using Midnight Muse, Wisteria Wonder & Smoky Slate and a combination of the Off the Grid, Dictionary and the Gorgeous Grunge stamps. I also edged it with some ink to define the edges a bit more.

Whilst putting these stamps away I spotted my all time favourite set of SU stamps Forever Young and thought the clock would be the perfect focus for the card. So I stamped it in the fabulous bright Melkn mambo direct onto the background, and then again onto another piece of card to fussy cut it out. Then I did the clock part again in the Smoky Slate and cut that out too.

I layered the clock onto the background and then the same with the clock face. I then added glossy accents to the clock face to give it a raised and … “glossy” …. finish.


I mounted it onto the Melon Mambo cardstock, I inked one of these and left the other plain to add a different effect. Then I added my embellishment of the moment … A doily! This softened the look of the card. Then added it to a navy card blank.

For the sentiment I used the fab That’s the Ticket stamp and the coordinating punch on the Melon Mambo cardstock and stuck it off centre. Finally some bling to finish off!

Love this card… And the dark card blank and the grungy background contrasts nicely with the pretty pink and the delicate doily!

Happy crafting!


Art Journal Basics class -the preparation

A few months ago when friends were gathered at my house they were having a mooch at my Documented Life Journal and expressed a wish for an art journal class. I had a little think and decided to agree to do one. Of course that meant several sleepless nights going … Ooh I could do this or I could do that … Only to remember most journal pages take a while to do, and time to dry, so that did limit what we could achieve in a couple of hours of crafting time. So a couple of days later I set to with my idea and worked out if it was possible to create something in a couple of hours that showed some techniques and basics for them.

I started with a quote…

We can complain that a rose bush has thorns, or we can rejoice that thorn bushes have roses…. Abraham Lincoln

I figured this had a lovely message and also had a visual message to be followed as well.

I took a sheet of thick watercolour card and cut it to 8×8 and then thought about what colour the quote made me think of. I decided on red and spritzed spray inks in red, pink, purple and orange/copper and swished the paper through them to give a good blended coverage.


I do love the finish that Dylusions inks give when doing this. So different everytime. I also spritzed some water to remove some colour in places … Although by the time the page is finished you can’t see any of this … But still it’s all part of the process.

Next I took a rose stamp which was a freebie with Craft Stamper, and stamped it down one edge in Archival ink, and also lots of times onto old book print. I then took a script background stamp and stamped that down the other side, along with the harlequin stamp and the sun shine stamp. Next it was time to add some paint. I actually started with a layer of gesso thinly brayered across the page. Then added some of the book print roses which I had cut out. To these I added some dark pink/maroon paint with my fingers, and some grey gelatos. I then added more white by using Distress Stain. I actually had a big accident with this as I squeezed the bottle and the dabber came out and flooded the page with white. Fortunately most of it wiped up … It is just a shame I wasted most of it!

Next I added more of the grey gelato and some more of the pink and maroon paint.

I also added silver paint down the edges, and made marks using lids and edge of credit card and the paint. As per usual I forgot to take any pictures of these stage … So my next picture includes, stamping with paint/ ink and using masks to push paint through and ink through. Oh and stamping the number/alphabet stamp with distress stain too!


At this point I had been working on the page for about an hour and a quarter. So time to move to finishing touches if this is to be a class.

I handwrote the quote (my printer wasn’t switched on so couldn’t be bothered to type it up instead) and then edged each piece, and sprayed with some ink. Next I took the remaining book print roses and coloured them with some gelatos and the spray inks. I added more copper to them to make them stand out a bit. I then layered these up … One of them has several layers to make it more dimensional, and rubbed some stickles over them once they were adhered to the page to give them a sparkle.


So this was my sample for the class. It meant I had finished a page under 2 hours with some basics in there. I could rule out certain techniques due to drying time, but this sort of thing was definitely doable.

A week or so later I decided to try the same process again but using different stamps for the background and different colour scheme. This time yellows and oranges. I didn’t do process pics as I forgot and just immersed myself in the process. I also didn’t get round to adding a quote at this point!


So in prep for the class I chose a few different quotes, and have printed them up in readiness. I also thought I would let people choose their own colours rather than dictate to them … After all I had started out choosing red for my first one, and it ended up very much more pink!

For me art journaling is so much more about the process rather than the end result. The hope is that the end result is good, but it isn’t a given, and shouldn’t be given as much consideration. But that’s just me!

Hopefully the girls in the class will take their enjoyment from the class and find their own way of art journalling … Given a few of them mainly like clean and neat things, it may well not be their thing! But company and playing with stuff should hopefully make it an enjoyable evening regardless!

Will post the result from the class in another post!

Happy crafting!


Wibble wobble gelli plate class! Preparation

This post is all about the prep I did for the Gelli plate playing class I hosted tonight. I wanted to have the lovely girls who I craft with be a bit brave and play with getting messy and a gelli plate is a fab easy way to start. But how to plan a class with something that will be different everytime you use it?!

So a few weeks ago I got out the gelli plate and the lovely new paints I had got and started to play. Now I admit the cardstock I used was actually scrap and was the backing for packs of 12×12 dsp! But in using this it did give me an idea on how we would quickly create a few different prints per person.

I started with red, cream and blue. The cream was meant to be a yellow but it turned out more cream to me … But still looked fab!


Next I tried blues and greens…


Whilst I was going along I also cleaned off my gelli plate on a piece of scrap patterned paper… This is now ultra messy!


And with the last bits of paint I decided to try to use some sticky backed plastic for the packing tape technique. It wasn’t 100% successful but I think I hadn’t put down enough paint or let it dry long enough. I ended up sticking this to a print I made with very little texture apart from bubble wrap and it looks quite nice like this I think. If I had been thinking I would have had the tin foil at the ready as that always looks fab as the background. But ho hum!


So quite a bit of printing in a couple of hours … Not bad seeing as I really wasn’t prepared to start with and gave me a lot of ideas to start my planning off for the class.

A few days later I spent some times looking at the prints and deciding what to do with them. I started by chopping up the 12×12 sheets into 5.5 x 5.5 squares to get rid of tatty edges and make them suitable to use as card toppers in use size they are. I figured this was the easiest way to tackle converting these lovely prints into something usable.


Then I stamped a couple of images out of newish stamps I have acquired. I stamped them onto white card using black and fussy cut them out. I find stamping detailed images onto acrylic never quite works well… So this collage effect is usually better. I added a mount of some scrap patterned paper too. Given the colours within the gelli prints can be quite different I figured that just having a whole load of scrap out for people to use what they like would work best for mounting them.

First up the La Musique stamp from Claritystamps.


Next the beautiful fairy silhouette from Lavinia stamps. Sorry about the rubbish photo … Not sure what happened with this but can’t be bothered to take another one right now!


Then I chose one of the blue and green prints to create this Christmas card topper using some Indigo Blu stamps. The sentiment I thought worked well cut into strips in my usual art journal method and outlined with the black and then fussy cut the snowflake border. Because the stamping on the border isn’t perfect I think it works quite well with the gelli print too… More arty! Well that’s my thought anyway!


This was my progress on this night and by this time I had made a decision that I would create samples from all eight pieces (not the sticky backed plastic piece or the scrap paper) for the class and have the stamps for people to use if they wish … But it is more likely people will only have time to make one or two card toppers and will have to take home the rest and finish at home with their own supplies. I thought the other two pieces I would use to create some art journal pieces instead…. As other examples of what they could be used for … Which will lead onto the next class I am doing with the gang!

Roll on to one week ago and I finally got round to finishing the samples.
And also took new pictures of the three above mounted on their cards!




Right so here come the other ones!


These were both using the fabulous Serene Silhouettes stamps which I usually use with brayered backgrounds but thought they worked well with these gelli plate ones too. I slightly messed up the stamping on the one with the wild flowers though so decided the sentiment stamped separately and then layered up would cover that little ‘creative diversion’!

Next up a tree based card. I heat embossed the Bare Forest Indigo Blu stamp with some black embossing powder. The shiny finish really works as contrast against the acrylic finish.


Then another Christmas card using freebie HOTP stamps I got with a magazine.


Finally… A Swallowtail card! It’s been a while since I made a card using this stamp … But it seemed the perfect choice for this Gelli Plate print!


So there you go … Eight samples made for the class … All different and all fab! Will share pics and links for blogs where relevant for what others created tonight as each persons print and finished product was different!

Such fun!