Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Yorick' s Skull Home Decor

“Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio, a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy.” This Yorick’s Skull centerpiece was rattling around in my mind for the last several months.

I'm going to confess right up front that this is not going to be a tutorial, but hopefully with all the pictures and some explanation it will at least inspire you to make something of your own.
 I began the project by purchasing a foam skull from Michaels. I covered it in Ideaology Halloween Collage Paper using Distress Collage Medium Matte. Once it was dry I rubbed in some Distress Crayon in Ground Espresso, Peeled Paint, and Black Soot.
 I just LOVE the way it turned out. The mix of lace and script on this Collage Paper is fantastic and it just gives it a creepy cool look!
 Then I cut a hole in the top of the skull that was large enough for the battery operated candle to fit in. I added faux dripping wax by melting a glue gun along the top of the skull and the top edge of the candle, letting it dry and then adding another layer and another until I was satisfied. It was a little too shiny, so I added some Antique Linen and Frayed Burlap Distress Crayon over the candle and all the glue drips to make it look dull and dusty like old wax.
 I added a few of the new creepy Ideaology Adornments Spiders on the skull with some Collage Medium. It's a small detail, but creepy! I love it!
 Can we take a moment to appreciate the Collage Paper and Distress Crayons on the teeth? So Cool!
 The skull needed a base, so I grabbed to hardback books from the Dollar Tree. I spent way too much time aging these books so I'm not going to go into all the steps because although I totally enjoyed it, 90% of that work got covered up so I don't know what I was thinking. hahahahaha
Before I move on to the next picture though -- take a minute to look at that tear in the Halloween Worn Wallpaper and appreciate the awesomeness of it.
 To age any hardback, I covered the words on the spine with Ranger Opaque Crackle Texture paste. Once it was dry I painted both books with Black Soot Distress Paint. Then I painted over the rest of the book with Distress Rock Candy Crackle Paint.
 Once dry I attached a piece of the Halloween Worn Wallpaper to the top of the book with Vintage Distress Collage Medium, including the sides of the pages and let dry. I sanded the edges of the worn Wallpaper and went over them with more Collage Medium, then aged the entire book with Pumice Stone, Ground Espresso and Peeled Paint Distress Crayons.
I attached a Halloween Vignette Accent to each of the book spines to add interest when it is sitting on a table as a centerpiece.
 I love these Halloween Vignette Accents!!! I mean come on...that bat!
 To complete the project I attached the books together and then attached the skull to the top of the books so they are all one piece. Then I just added some moss, Ideaology Mummy Cloth (love it !!) and some of the Sizzix Alterations Skeleton Leaves and the new Sizzix Alterations Branches.

I hope this project helps to jumpstart you into making something of your own with the amazing Halloween Collage paper and Ideaology. Tim Holtz has done it again with an array of fabulous pieces for your home Halloween decor!

Monday, October 15, 2018

Tiny Ghoulish Graveyard - Sizzix Alterations

It was so much fun to make this mini little graveyard scene out of a small Ideaology Vignette Box and some of Tim Holtz Sizzix Alterations dies using shrink plastic.
I started by making the background. I sprayed some Distress Resist Spray onto a piece of Distress Mixed Media Heavystock. Then I colored a bit in a circle with some Mustard Seed Oxide and put some Resist Spray on my finger and went over the circle to seal it.  Once it was dry I colored the background with Black Soot and Chipped Sapphire Distress Ink.
Then I set about making the scene. I cut the skeleton from the Ghoulish die set, the tombstones and gate from the Village Graveyard set, and the large tombstone is the tag shape from the Gift Tags die set all out of Shrink Plastic.

 It is important to color the pieces before you shrink them. The color will concentrate so it doesn't have to be too dark. The shrink according to the package directions.
Once they had shrunk, I added more color with Distress Paints and Distress Markers.
You might notice that the gate die didn't cut all the tiny pieces out of the shrink plastic. I was going to recut it with a shim, when I decided that I actually really liked the design it made as it was and went ahead with it. I still really love it! Because the fence dies are so detailed, when you shrink them they sometimes look a little warped if you don't flatten them out quickly. I didn't because how awesome are they like this all crooked and warped. Fabulous! I colored the gate black and added some little bits of Rusty Hinge Distress Paint on the top.
The frame was made by cutting a piece of Distress Mixed Media Heavy stock the size of the Vignette Box. Next I colored it with Distress Inks and ran it through the Lumber 3-D Texture Fade.  I cut the window out with the smallest Stacked Labels die.
The sides of the Vignette Box were covered with Distress Mixed Media Heavystock that was colored with Distress Inks and then embossed with the Planks embossing folder.
One laat thing, I used Glow in the Dark shrink plastic from Darcie for the skeleton and the arms. IT makes me laugh!

Thanks for stopping by to check out this mini Ghoulish art piece. I made a little video of it too so you can see it in a different format.

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Memento Mori - Remember Death Etcetera Tombstone

Of all of the Halloween samples I made this summer, this one represents me the most. I was so excited to have the opportunity to work with these new Tombstone Etcetera Tag overlays from Tim Holtz and Stampers Anonymous.  There are so many different things you can do with them, from paper to paint, to Ideaology to Sizzix Alterations to Stamps. Really, the ideas are endless.They come in two sizes. This project is using the Small Etcetera Tombstone, and there is a Medium Etcetera Tombstone as well.  They are a GREAT price point!

I adore old, really old graveyards and tombstones.  Probably because here in California we just mostly have the little flat, marble headstones with zero personality. When I traveled to Boston with my mom and sister, we visited many old Puritan cemeteries. 
We noticed a lot of skulls and bones depicted on them, and learned the Puritans view of death, mortality and the transience of life is evident in the symbolism on the headstones, It was then that my former reticence about skulls changed and now I am all about the symbolism of bones and skulls in my Halloween decor. More on that later.
For my tombstone I decided to try and make it look like one of the ornate, old markers I had seen in cemeteries back east.
 To accomplish this I attached the overlay pieces onto the Etcetera tag with Distress Collage Medium. Then I painted it all with a coat of Black Soot Distress Paint.
Next I turned to the Sizzix Alterations 3-D Impresslits Medallion, Mini Provencial and Provencial. I cut them out of a 110 lb black heavystock.
To fit the mini Provincial around the inside of the arch, I cut between each of the points almost to the back of the piece then I slightly overlapped them when I attached it to the inside of the arch.
 The bottom Mini Provincial piece just got placed along the inside edge of the top. In the middle I adhered the small Medallion.

Memento Mori, the practice of remembering that death comes to us all and that life is fleeting, is a long held view in the Christian church.  Starting the the Middle Ages, the term and symbols were used on grave markers to remind the living of their mortality.
This center area I covered with a whole piece of the black heavystock. But before I attached it, I stamped and embossed the term Memento Mori -- meaning"Remember Death"using letters from the stamp set called Worn Text CMS156. I stamped and embossed it with black embossing powder several times on the stamp platform before I adhered the paper. I wanted the words to stand out like they would on a marker.  
I also stamped and embossed the skull and crossbones from the Tim Holtz Regions Beyond CMS 274 stamp set onto some black heavystock adhered to chipboard and then I cut it out. I mounted this on the middle of the main section above the wording and on top of a pair of Ideaology metal wings. I used a set from the regular Ideaology line, but there are some amazing new wings called Angelic as part of the Christmas release that would be fabulous too! 

At the bottom, I attached the large provincial along the top of the center and the base section of the piece.
There is a beaded edge along the bottom of the Provencial Impresslit and so I cut those off of several pieces and attached them around the middle section to give it a finished look.
 They are very thin strips but I felt like it gave the piece just the detail it needed.
An additional detail I added were the decorative floral centers on the large Impresslit Medallions. I fussy cut them out with my Tonic Snips and attached them before adding some of the Crackle Texture Paste.
Once all of the pieces were in place and adhered the entire piece was painted with a layer of Black Soot Distress Paint. I then sprayed over the top a bit of Distress Resist Spray so that black specks would show through the next few layers to give a bit of a feel of granite.

 Winged Skulls or "death's head" symbol represents death and mortality and has been in use since the medieval period, but was prevalent in graveyards back east with a large Puritan influence.
To age the pieces I smeared some Ranger Opaque Crackle Texture Paste on top of the whole thing and let it dry and crack. In some places it didn't crack as much as it just added clumpy texture which was all fine with me as it was my first time. I've since improved my technique. I was still pleased with the texture anyway.
 I then painted the entire piece with the "uncolor" Pumice Stone Distress Paint. I worked the paint onto the piece as well as wiping it off the stamped images and allowing some of the black underneath to show through.
Once painted I covered the entire thing in Distress Collage Medium and then added lots of Distress Crayon to the top in Hickory Smoke, Ground Espresso, Vintage Photo, and Peeled Paint.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Happy Halloween - Owls and Lace

The Mr. Bones CMS345 Stamp set from Tim Holtz Stampers Anonymous has a great variety of images and sentiments. I really like the font on the sentiments on this set.  The images pair so well with lots of other stamp sets too!

This card came about from some of my leftovers. When I get the stamps to make samples, I start by stamping them all. Sometimes with sentiments and sometimes just images and sentiments separately. The backgrounds all get stamped whole in several different colors of ink.

Last summer Tim gave me some advice about taking time just to create without an end purpose in mind. Just set aside time to make backgrounds, stamp images, or die cut shapes. Then later get those creations out and see what might work together to make an end product. That's what happened here.
 For this card I focused on the owl sitting on the moon, that I had stamped with a sentiment. It's just a fabulous image that can be spooky, beautiful or even peaceful. The image was watercolored on Distress Mixed Media Heavystock, then covered with a layer of Distress Glaze, and then the rest of the paper is lightly colored with some Distress Inks. I paired it with an owl charm from Tim Holtz Halloween Ideaology.
To make this image into a card, I looked through some of the stamped and inked backgrounds I had made during a create session and found several that I thought worked with this stamped image. The background layers are as follows:
  1. The small brown mat helps the owl stand out. It is the Planks stamp from the Planks and Craze CMS344 stamp set and colored with brown distress ink.
  2. The black background mat is the Lace stamp from the Ornate and Lace CMS348  stamp set. This lace stamp is incredibly versatile!
  3. The blueish purple background mat is a Distress Oxide background using Distress Oxides on Alcohol Ink Cardstock and then adding a layer of Distress Glaze over them.

I encourage you to try having some create time with no project in mind. Just spend a few hours making backgrounds, a few hours stamping and coloring images, a few hours die cutting and inking shapes. Then later, pull them all out and see what can go together to make something.I think you will be surprised at how many cards or tags you can pull together in a short amount of time this way.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Boo - Shifters and Scribbles

More Shifter Stencil love! I can't get enough of the shifters from Tim Holtz and Stampers Anonymous!

For my Shifter Stencil sample cards I tried to use the shifters in three different ways.
  1. I used the double shift technique with four colors on the Mr. Bones card
  2. I used the conventional shifter technique with two colors on the Candy Corn card
  3. Today's Boo card I used the shifters with a single color  (mostly - the stripe shifter done in all black was too heavy for this card so I added a stripe in the background color of Ripe Persimmon.)
 I used the Mini Shifters Stencils #39 on this card for the layers and the background polkadot is the large Shifter Dots THS109  Stencil.
The focal images and sentiment stamps are from the Spooky Scribbles CMS 349 set from Tim Holtz Stampers Anonymous, and stamped on Distress Watercolor Cardstock. The black images are embossed with Ranger Black Superfine Embossing Powder.
The spider web is stamped with Hickory Smoke Distress Oxide, and they were punched out with circles and mounted on the Seal paper punch and large and small seal dies from the Labels die set.

I finished the card off with some messy stitching.  Another really super easy card to make thanks to some great products from Tim Holtz, Stampers Anonymous, Sizzix Alterations and Ranger Ink.

Monday, October 8, 2018

Autumn Beauty in Simplicity

 Today's card is the opposite of yesterday's. This card was made from the negative impression when an Alcohol Ink background on Yupo paper is stamped with Alcohol Ink Lift.  I just love the beauty of the Nature's Wonder CMS343 leaf impressions in the Alcohol Ink.
 If you look closely you can see the the background mat has a light pattern to it. I stamped the Lace CMS348 background stamp onto Distress Mixed Media Heavystock in Old Paper Distress Oxide.
 You can see I also stamped the back ground of the sentiment with the Lace stamp and the Old Paper Distress Oxide.