Category Archives: Swallowtail

Brusho magic art journalling class

Tonight we started autumn term of our art journalling sessions.  Tonight’s class was creating brusho backgrounds combined with heat embossing. 
Results were lots of oohs and aahs as the brushos activated. Lots of laughs and fun was had and most importantly people went home less stressed than when they had arrived. Much needed arty fun!

Here are the results of our playtime…



Lots of cool brusho artwork.  Will start sharing the samples soon. Just not had much time to get round to blogging of late. Life far too busy.

Happy crafting!


Prepping for art journal class

Tonight I have 8 lovelies joining me for what we hope to be a regular art journal/mixed media session. Each time we will play with a new media or technique. Last time was about Dylusions and promarkers. This time gelli plate acrylic paint prints and watercolour pencils.

I had promised butterflies … specifically for Alison … but also because I know a number of the class participants already have the gorgeous Swallowtail SU stamp so I thought a watercolour pencil type finish with this stamp was a good way of using it.


Sample one was purples and pinks and blues.


Sample two was blues and yellows.


Sample three reds, yellows and oranges.

On all of them the base is made up of a window effect using different prints with the same paint colours. Then the
Swallowtail is stamped on a ghost print and then watercolour pencil added, water used to blend. Then on all three definition added with shading and edges doodled. I particularly like the one I put in the frame. I added some faux stitching on each of the panels and love the freshness of the colours.

Hopefully the ladies will find some inspiration from this … can’t wait to see what colours and different pages everyone makes. I’m giving them a couple of stencils and a selection of colours to choose their own versions… can’t wait to see what they come up with!

Happy crafting!


WOYWW! A gift for my class

Yes it is WOYWW again… And I actually have cleared up the mess from last week… But now can’t show my desk as working on something secret! But can share with you what the spare bed looked like yesterday before I hosted the art journalling session…


Lots of neat little piles of goodies for each of the participants including instructions, card kits from a cancelled session from September, swaps from last years atc challenge, their new journals and an atc for this sessions inspiration. The Christmas bag had some of the supplies for the class in it ready to take downstairs too!

And there was one little surprise for the gang that they weren’t expecting… I gave them each a bag to carry their journal home in (and hopefully back to the future sessions too!). I had personalised them for each participant … Keeping the same image, but changing the name. Here is one of them as an example…


I used the fabulous Swallowtail stamp and used Inktense blocks to ink up, added plenty of sprayed on water and then stamped. Then I added a bit more spray water and used a brush to ensure all the ink was activated and blended. Then I sprayed the bag directly with water before I wrote the names (in the best writing I could muster).

Although they are all similar I did add slightly different amounts of the colours for each one, so they are all unique!

Thanks for visiting.

Off to see other desks around the world courtesy of Julia’s blog … It’s fun… Why not join in?

Happy crafting!


Ps hope to actually share my desk again next week not just the spare bed!

Colour my Monday! Worn Lipstick!

Yes I am back with Colour my Monday! . I am unlikely to be here every Monday… But every time I decide to play with a particular colour, I will share it on a Monday with you. This week I have a card I made using predominantly Worn Lipstick. This is a nice vibrant colour from the Distress Ink range.


I must admit I love distress ink colours, but not so keen on them for stamping with. Much prefer the consistency of SU inks for that. Find they can be a bit oily. But they techniques you can do with distress inks are fun. In this case I did use the ink mainly for adding with a blending tool. I admit, this is not something I find easy to get good smooth results, but when you scrunch up the paper first before applying the ink it really doesn’t matter!

Top tip for adding distress ink and not getting the blend smooth… Go for a distressed grunge look so it won’t matter!

To this I added the dictionary stamp to add some text to the background. Stamping it in the same ink used for the background added a lovely tonal finish as the text blended into the places where the ink was applied more heavily.

Next up, the focal feature… Swallowtail. This is still one of my favourite stamps. This time I heat embossed using some coloured embossing powder. This was again in keeping with the main colour I had chosen, but is darker and the finish of the heat embossing I always find special.


I decided the sentiment needed to be darker than the background and so chose Night of Navy ink to match the cardstock I chose to mount it on. Then some little strips of floral washi tape, a doily lightly brushed with the Worn Lipstick ink, and some gems… All done. A pretty card for my friend.

Happy crafting!


Resisting the Swallowtail

I struggle to resist using this stamp… It really is one of my favorites! For this card I used a technique I love with this stamp … Resist inking!

I start by cutting the Whisper White cardstock to the size I want and then stamping the Swallowtail using Versamark ink. Then I heat emboss it with clear embossing powder. This creates the area that will remain white as it resists the ink being applied.

I used the following colours for the butterfly… Smoky Slate, Night of Navy, Melon Mambo, Perfect Plum… With added black and grey for the rest of the panel. Then I used some tissue to buff up the embossed area to remove the ink residue sitting on the top of the embossing.

Next I used Gorgeous Grunge stamps to break up the background a little. Then added the sentiment using the swirly and lovely Beautiful Birthday stamp.


I had so much fun doing this technique I made another card using the same technique but a different stamp and colour scheme… But will share that another time as that’s for someone else’s birthday! This one was for Sherayne! Hope you liked it hon!

Happy crafting!


Playing with my colours again!

A few months ago I started making colour charts in a little sketch book for all my ink pads… Here is the link. Then I did something similar with my Promarkers in a journal … Again here is the link… So now I have started on some of my other mediums…

First up my Inktense pencils. I coloured little swatches in and washed them with water, then punched out butterflies and adhered them into the book with the names and codes next to them. I then stamped a Swallowtail and some of the bricks Darcy designed and coloured and painted them in using the Inktense for the “cover” page.



Next I moved onto the Spectrum Noir Pencils which I got in the 3 for 2 offer at Hobbycraft fairly recently. I decided for these to stamp a little banner from Banner Blast colour it in, add the pencil colour number, and then punch out with the small banner punch then adhere into the book. But then I also created a little theme for each collection of colours using the fabulous stamps Darcy has created! The fabulous Steampunk snail, an Industrial Butterfly and cogs and the trailing heart vines (my favourite and possibly most used stamp Darcy has created so far… Although the new heart flower is coming up as a close second!).





It’s such a good way to test out the mediums and also have a play with a pretty result at the end… And a nice way to look at the colours so you know what the end result may be when you put them to use.

Happy crafting!


Colour my Monday! Elegant Eggplant!


Happy Monday! Time for some elegance and some lovely REGAL colour!


After all the Christmas card making it was good to go clean and simple and make something different! Time for the trusty Swallowtail stamp to come out!


I stamped the butterfly through an aperture in have Elegant Eggplant and used my water brush to pull the ink around the image, then added a border with Wisteria Wonder pen and outline both the butterfly and the square with some Smoky Slate ink and the water brush to give it some dimension. The sentiment was not brilliantly stamped due to inferior quality of the stamp (magazine freebie now in the bin) but still I love the simplicity of the card. The idea came from something I saw on Pinterest … Love that I made something from an idea I pinned and it worked well!

Happy crafting!


Needed to create … Stepped up my Swallowtail!

So I came home from my hols yesterday and last night needed to create something! I faffed around with the bits and pieces on my desk and then randomly grabbed the Swallowtail stamp, some linen cardstock (because it was there!) and the first colour that came to hand … Summer Starfruit!

I then used some Calypso Coral, Baked Brown Sugar, Bermuda Bay & Crisp Canteloupe and watercolouring brush to add some pattern and detail. I also did an outline of Smoky Slate to make it pop from the page.


Next I decided to cut the swallowtail out as a panel, and mount it onto some Bermuda Bay & Basic Grey. I also did an outline of theSmoky Slate as a watercolour to the edge of the white panel to keep the same type of theme going. At this point I decided to step it up. What I mean by this is to add an extra effect and make it more special. So I dug out my perfect pearls and with water added some iridescent sheen to the wings. I used mainly a cream coloured perfect pearl, but also a bit of a blue where the Bermuda Bay was to give a slightly different look.


Pretty special looking … Oh yes. Next I wanted to give the body of the butterfly some dimension so I used a champagne liquid pearl with an edge of champagne stickles to create a raised body.


Now I was pretty happy that my topper was as good as I was going to get it. I decided that as it was quite a big topper … 5.5″ x 4.5″ I needed to make a big card with it and not just stick it onto a 6×6 card. So I took another piece of 7×7 white linen card and stamped the Swallowtail randomly in the same colours and softened the image with the watercolour technique. I added the same colours as in the main image but kept the colour wishy washy. Next I stamped all over with the Woodgrain background stamp in Baked Brown Sugar, then added some splodges and text from French Foliage and some dots from Gorgeous Grunge in Crisp Canteloupe & Basic Grey. Then I finished it with some Calypso Coral ink to define the edge.

I put the background sheet on the 8×8 card blank at a wonky angle, then the topper also wonky, with a doily underneath to soften it a little. Then pulled some paper flower embellishments out of my box of bits, and a button and some twine to finish off!


So proud of this card. I made such an effort with each bit of the card… Think I could get used to creating these bigger cards rather than lots of little cards like I normally do! It was satisfying to think of how I could improve what I was doing rather than just accepting it as it was. Think this may eventually be my Mum’s birthday card… Although as her birthday is not until August will have to remember where I put it when I put it in a safe place! Lol!

Happy crafting!


Finishing off the gelli plate class!

Can’t get to sleep so thought I would write up a blog post instead!

Last Wednesday as part of the class I demonstrated how to use the gelli plate and so ended up with a little stash of prints. I then got to play along with the lovelies in the class deciding what to do with them. The great news about this was I got to play with some stamps they brought with them too! Here are the prints I made and stamped up…

I heat embossed this Swallowtail with white detail powder. Missed a bit of the stamping but don’t think it matters really!

I do love this Indigo Blu stamp! Could use it time and time again. Not 100% convinced by the gelli print though … Strange how it doesn’t sing to me!

This is a mixture of Serene Silhouettes and the Lindsay Mason fairy stamps Karen brought. Lovely! Nice funky card this one!

Julie brought Summer Silhouettes with her … I now need this set if inly for these fab leaves! Also love using the Feel Goods sentiments … Such nice statements!

My favourite last! Lavinia stamps which Julie brought just seem to work perfectly with the print. Really love this one!

So this is how they were at the end of the night. I didn’t get round to mounting them on anything, partly because I was really supposed to be teaching but also because all my stuff was spread over many rooms as we were still in the midst of moving things into the spare room which is now my craft room. Regardless of them not being finished, I am still pretty pleased with them … Especially the last three!

Now going to switch off the iPad for the second time since coming to bed and attempt sleep again!

Happy crafting!


Wibble wobble gelli plate other samples

You may recall that I had made two additional prints in prep for the class I held on Wednesday to play with the gelli plate! What I didn’t get round to doing was sharing what I did with them. I actually decided rather than use them for art journalling that I would make another two cards from them instead.

First I used my favourite Sheena Douglass Oak tree stamp on the print which was the clean up sheet I had been using (never waste that precious acrylic!!!). I heat embossed it to give it even more beautiful texture!


Next up is the print with the sticky backed plastic. I decided to use the Swallowtail stamp with Archival ink to stamp directly onto the plastic. Not ideal … Would have been better with StayZon but still a nice card.


Happy crafting!