I love chatting with other crafters. It's always fun to spend time with others who share your hobbies and interests. Lately I've had a chance to chat with some some "new to paper crafts" friends. It's always good for me to be around people who are just getting starting in this,... be it in a class I'm teaching or just conversing with friends. Why?? because it quickly reminds me that not everyones world revolves around paper and glue.. like mine seems to at times..lol, and also that I need to be sure to not just assume people know where to even begin, when they do decide they want to start scrapbooking, card making ect... I think we crafters can be very intimidating at times, with all our "gadgets" and rooms filled with every craft supply known to man. :) The truth is there are lots of people out there that love to craft or would like to get started crafting, that don't have a clue what the names are of the top Manufactures or what the the "hippest" paper line out right now is ( and probably don't care). lol They just want to enjoy the process, and create! Really... there are lots of people that want to craft (as a hobby), without becoming so consumed by it that they have to lay in bed at night dreaming of the new stamp release coming out next month.( like some of us) haha
So I decided to do a blog post showing easy ideas for adding dimension to products, for simple distressing tips and adding interest with little details. I thought the easiest way to do that would be to just create a project and share some of these things along the way. So I created this little altered hanging.
I used papers from the "Creating with Vintage Images CD" , and "Love Mail" Creative Scraps, both from Crafty Secrets.
You can use anything for your base to work from , chipboard, wood ect, I'm using this back piece from a vintage photo holder.
If I want a different colored background I often use a basic acrylic paint. I usually never completely cover the background with paint, when I'm trying to achieve a shabby look. Let a little of the background show through. Shabby = not perfect :) this is a time to embrace the chance to be a little messy, not be a perfectionist. Using a soft brown ink pad, and rubbing it ( lightly) , not only around the edges of your project, but over any raised areas, gives it an aged look and adds interest. My personal favorite is ColorBox Chalk Cat Eye from Clearsnap. Color Chestnut Roan
And below.. is my old tried and true "tracing wheel" technique. It's been around a while but is still worth it's weight in gold as far as I'm concerned. If you don't have a sewing machine or are working on a project that you can actually stitch through, all you need is a inexpensive tracing wheel. You can find them in the sewing dept of any store that carries fabric or sewing supplies. You just apply pressure as you run the wheel around any of the areas of your project that you want to create a faux stitched look. The little perforations the wheel makes really does give the effect of stitching.
Using a distressing tool like this, around the edges of your images, or paper, can add interest and give the paper a worn look.
If you don't have a distressing tool, you can use the sharp edge of your scissors.
When it comes to my photos I don't like to get that aggressive, but I do use a emery board on the edges to get a similar, but a bit more subtle look. ( without risking bending or tearing my photo)
Adding dimension to your project really adds interest. One easy way to do this is with 3D Foam Squares. They are adhesive on both sides, so all you to is use them to attach your paper piece, image, ect.. to your altered project.
You don't always have to add them to the entire piece. Lots of times I just add them to one edge, letting the other edge be flush with the project background.
It's amazing how much charm "the little things" can give your vintage projects. The extra attention you pay to distressing, inking ect, never goes unnoticed. Once you've staged you background and added your photo and larger images, you can work on the little details. Those extra little things that aren't always the first things you notice when you look at the project, but that defiantly pull it all together. The special finishing touches. I think it's these little things are what really "make" the project, most times. ( this is usually my favorite part of the creative process).
I cut a small butterfly image from my Creative Scraps sheet, and added it to the decorative straight pin. ( below)
I used a simple glitter pen like this to outline the butterfly to make it stand off the project even more. I love this pen!
I tucked my butterfly pin down into my the top part of my flowers and ribbon cluster.
I'm always get recharged when I talk to people who are just getting started scrapbooking/card making ect You see them getting bitten by "the bug". Excited about fun products they find that fit perfectly for what they are wanting to work on. And seeing how fun it is for them to show off their finished projects.
So this post is for you girls! I hope you found some tips you can use in the future.
And keep in mind there are many online communities with forums where you can ask questions, learn techniques and meet other crafters from beginers to advanced. Some of the nicest people I've ever met have been ones I've met online, through this hobby, so dont be afraid to reach out and ask questions.
And remember , when you CREATE.. take time to enjoy the process!
PS. Dont forget to get your name in for the giveaway in the post below :)
Enjoy the day