2010/01/28

Beads and a brooch

A friend of mine bought at expensive designer dress for a party. Its color is chocolate, the skirt and the wide shoulder straps are made from organza. And it begged for something bright and fancy to complete the gorgeous looks. The shop assistants offered funny turquoise beads, but the price was pretty stiff, so my friend said she'll think about that and refused to buy at that very moment. I, being the witness of that scene, offered my help - to create some 'jewelry' for her dress for free.
That's what I made:


It was the first time I ever took up beading (ashberry beads 20 years ago don't count, do they? =) ). I never wear anything like that and don't like it very much (I prefer genuine gems and natural precious metals), so I don't understand much in it.
Browsing the internet led to two types of tutorials: either "take everything you have and string that" or a fimo-clay-modelling. So, I had to do it the way I thought it should be - no rules, no traditions, no idea how it usually happens =)
Finally it turned out to be: a nylon bright-blue cord with a large turquoise-like bead with round beaded parts at both sides. And there're two strings going from the clips to that bead, swirling round the cord. These strings start with organza ribbons (to match the dress material) and continue with a handful of different beads: big, small, metal, acrylic, glass, wooden etc. I'd like to draw attention to two parts: a bunch of strings of small beads tied in a knot and a chocolate-blue flower made of rolled satin ribbons (hello, quilling!).
In addition to the beads I made a brooch to fix it on the belt and add a bright spot.

An inverted rolled ribbon flower, another large turquoise-like bead, a small-beads brush and three danglers which consist of different beads and which jingle and stir as the person who wears it moves =)
So that is my first experience in bead-making. Unruled, non-traditional and totally crazy, but one can stare at it for a long time - it definitely attracts attention. =)

2010/01/26

Card for a "daddy-to-be"

It's not a card itself yet, it's a project which is half-done and is still planned.

For sometime I've been thinking how to tell a husband that you're expecting a baby. I read some stories how it happened in my acquaintance's families and with strange people. Most of the times ladies yell about the result of a pregnancy test from the bathroom or nearby. And internet never showed me anything romantic about this situation, so I decided to give it a try and make a few cards "Honey, you're going to be a father!"
This is my first idea.
What is a family? A union of a man and a woman, which is supposed to lead to a 'population-growth'. And there're some people who are sure that a family isn't a family without the kids. So that's the idea I used here: making the family full and the life bright with the baby.
That's the front cover of the card:


Black and white, yin and yang. The next picture explains the process of card making

There's the lower part - white and black - with a "swirl" of dao-symbol. And there's the upper part - black and white - with a circle cut in the middle and some words through-cut on the both halves. The upper part is fixed above the lower one with pop-up glue squares just like the circles inside of the 'dao'. The words don't look quite readable beacuse of the shadow, but in real life they look okay. The left side contains the words, which assosiate with my husband: his name, his nickname, "husband", "strong", "reality", "man", "you", "day". The right side is a feminine one with opposite words: my name, nick, "wife", "woman", "dream", "weak", "me", "night". Actually in English I'd think of better pairs, Russian language is a little hard to use in a card like that.
And the inside of the card should look like that (i didn't do it in paper yet, so it's just a digital project)

It says: "You and me - we're the two halves of the whole, of our family. We're so different, yet we're together. And we live our life together, overcoming the BLACK stripes and celebrating the WHITE ones... But soon our life will be filled with a whole palette of bright colors!" The bottom is covered with a lid with words "Darling, you're going to be a father!" Then the lid if lifted the idea of "bright colors" becomes illustrated:


Words with arrows are "Mommy", "Daddy" and "Me".

The idea can be a little changed from "you're daddy-to-be" to "Honey, let's add some bright colors to our life. Let's have a baby!"

ps: I'm not expecting a baby, it's just a project which i took up for fun and maybe for future. Making only "happy birthday" cards can be boring, so I wanted to add some special meaning to my hobby =)

2010/01/25

Futurama characters

My husband likes the series "Futurama", and once he asked me if I could make a soft-toy Bender. Why not? I did =) And that's how it looks:

"Bite my shiny metal ass" should now sound like "Bite my soft and velvet ass" =)))

Then we went travelling and bought a suitcase: simple and black. But how many simple black suitcases are there in each airport? You'll never find yours. So I took a brush and some paints and painted a Bender picture on the suitcase =)

It successfully survived two trips and still looks as good as new!

Then I continued making the characters, the next was a Hypnotoad!



Everybody loves hypnotoad. I felted it. The only thing it misses is a dreadful sound and the shape-changing eyes.

And the last Futurama-thing so far is a brainslug: soft, velvet, with wired antennae and three clips underneath for "catching" a victim =)



2010/01/24

Pink Christmas card

Once upon a time a couple of weeks before Christmas my friend and I went to a handcrafts store. It was small and there were no customers, but there was a full box of Prima roses in the middle of the room. I don't really like them - they are so "traditional" if not "banal and obvious", there's hardly a scrapbooker or a cardmaker who has never used them. They're pretty yet boring, so I never cared about buying or using them. But when I faced a full box of these roses I thought "why not? everyone uses and i can" =)
Although there were only pink ones, and I never liked pink - and I said that aloud. And my friend answered: "And I do! I like pink!" - "Ok, I'll make a card with these roses for you" - "Good, for Christmas". Hm... That's the beginning of the story, so I faced the challenge: make a PINK Christmas card.
That is what I made

I had to visit a handcrafts store again for I had almost no pink papers and cardstock at home =)
So, there's what we've got: pink cardstock base with golden-brushed edges. Then a nice "crumpled" paper with pearl effect, cut with figure scissors and a snowflake corner punch. Then the pink corners with golden doodles (once it was a part of a chocolate box), bright pink satin ribbon.
A christmas tree is made from velvet pink paper (layers of it are a little embossed), decorated with purple, dark pink and light pink half-beads "Rayher", topped with a golden star. Plus a few snowflakes - all that upon a metal effect pink paper, edged with a translucent pink organza ribbon which is tied in a bow in one of the corners.
The close-up of the tree:

And there're a few snowflakes: three white in the bottom with words "Happy New Year", and a white one of top - sewn down to the base and decorated with pink beads:

And the inside of the card:

There are the Prima roses! The roses are pretty thick and can't be put into a flat card, so I had to make the back of the card in a shape of small box. The bottom of the "box" is decorated with beautiful patterned pink paper with glossy figures (guess what? it was a cigarette ad in Cosmo, the only thing I like this magazine for - nice patterns =)). There's also a quilled butterfly and a bunch of punched and beaded flowers.
The greeting was written on vellum and attached in the center later. The words said: "May your life be filled with tender colors, unusual colors and irregular solutions! Bloom like a flower"

I think that the problem of making a pink Xmas card was pretty interesting. I tried to make it as less vulgar as I could, and I softened the 'pointless' appearance of the roses with the words in greeting, so that they won't look like "I had a lot of roses and all that stuff and I like gluing them here and there just because". I hope I succeeded =)

2010/01/21

Cat card - for a guy

A card for my brother's birthday.


My brother loves cats (and has a nickname 'greycat') and guitars, so I combined these two things. I bought silver-covered guitar strings and found grey velvet paper. Drew a cat silhouette, and shaped the thickest string accordingly with the pliers. The string is attached to the base with wire loops, which are twisted and fixed on the wrong side of the paper. The whiskers and the "brows" are the pieces of the string too, but the thinnest one. The eye once was a part or the marble-green mediator.
Here the close-up of the cat's face


A flower and a leaf are made from colorful mediators and a piece of string as well.
Another mediator - with a bird - is fixed on the top of the card, and there're stmaped music/notes nearby.
The velvet paper with the cat on it is attached to the acrylic-painted cardstock with silver staples. If it was a girl-card I would use something less "brutal", but as long as it's a guy-card staples fitted in the right way =)
Inside of the card there's a written wish, where all characters А, D, E and C with 'm' and '7' added from time to time, are enlarged and there're icons above them depicting the according chord (you know that square with string numbers and frets).
Thanks for looking!

2010/01/20

Happy pregnancy card

My colleague is going to have a baby and has already left the job for maternity reasons. And before she "retired" I gave her a card to wish her happy expectation and easy pregnancy.
I browsed through the Internet to find some inspiration and ideas, but the only thing I found were headless belly silhouettes with lots of "Prima" flowers. So I changed the idea of "happy pregnancy" to "happy expectation", because expectation assumes not only the existence of the belly, but also buying things for the baby, getting ready for his/her appearance etc. So there's gonna be a collage with baby stuff.
Inspite of the 8th month, the gender fo the baby is still unknown, so I had to forget about those traditional blue-boy and pink-girl color schemes. And I decided to stop by yellow and green.
That's what it turned out to be:

Click to enlarge.
The base of the card is ivory paper for watercolors, the bottom edge punched with flower design. Two side edges are cut with figure scissors and brushed with a green stamping pad, the top is embellished with a piece of ivony flower lace.
In the middle of the card there's a plaited mat: beige "suede" paper and checked green paper (Martha Stewart). And light green trimming on the edges.
The mat is topped with a tiny sweater. I knitted it with 2-mm needles from the embroidery thread. Cords, yellow trims and beads. Besides this sweater there's a baby-carriage charm (thanks to omelitsa (omelitsa.blogspot.com) ) and a pair of baby boots, crochet - there's very small. There's a photo of them in comparison to a coin (diameter of itabout 1 cm).

The shaker: wire, ribbon bow, and a part of a push through pack from the headache medicine filled with micro beads. That pack was pretty hard to find: all pills nowadays have absolutely unsuitable for hand crafts packages =)
I also wanted to add a greeting or a phrase on the card, but I though it was enough - the card already looks well equipped =)

2010/01/19

"Happy new year" card - foil qulling

For this New Year holiday season I wanted to send a greeting card to my friend, who lives in a foreign country. I thought about my favorite quilling, but I wasn't sure that it would survive passing through the Russian post =) So I had to think about something less delicate, but not less beautiful.
And I thought about... foil!


There's the whole card itself:


The snowflake is made with foil (a foil strip was twisted to become harder and then was shaped into quilling-like figures), sequins and beads. It was glued with super-strength glue (the white glue which I usually use failed to glue the aluminium) to the white snowflake embossed paper. Then a light-blue paper with figure punched corners. And handdrawn doodles.
The background paper is also decorated with blue glitter gel pen handdrawn doodles, and the blue cardstock above the background once was a part of the chocolate box =) I loved the pattern so much I couldn't through it away after the chocolates were gone, and so I found a project to use it in.


All this is attached with a brocade-ribbon, and the bow is embellished with an "iced star" - a kanzashi thingie, the first I ever made in my life =)

2010/01/18

"Happy birthday card" for my mom

The card was made in summer 2009.

It's a card for my mom's birthday. She was away from home for her bday, so I tried my best to create something cozy and funny to make her smile and to make her remember that she's loved.
The composition it not complicated, but there's a plenty of techniques used. Felting, quilling, pergamano, handmade paper marbling, dry embossing, using punches and beads...
And I paid much attention to color: I wanted it to be modest yet bright enough not to be dull. So I chose green, summer color: I made a marble paper with green paints, cut the edges with shaped scissors and marked them with green color to make them brighter. Then I attached a piece of green cardstock, then a piece of vellum with embossed edges, which were pricked and torn to create a "lace"-like look. And an embossed (with vines) piece of white cardstock, where I put a little green shades to make vines "pump". On the top of that sits a felted raccoon - a white one. I have this nickname for more than 12 years, and all my family got used to it, and my mom sometimes calls me this way =) So there wasn't a better way to create a greeting card from me to my mom than depicting a White Racoon there. With a bunch of quilled flowers in its paws. For raccoon figure I used both - dry and wet felting. For quilling I used white, green and lilac strips - to add some color to this green-white card and to remind my mom of my favourite colors ;)
Here you can see the bunch a little closer:

Pics are clickable to enlarge.

2010/01/16

30 mini cards with quilling

Today I'm going to present my "creation", which was made last august. A friend of mine asked me to make a greeting card. She and her husband celebrated 30th birthdays in September with a few days difference; and the same September decade was marked with their wedding anniversary. So I thought for a while and decided that it won't be a single card, there should be... 30 cards!
Of course the size of each card was small: 7 cm * 7 cm (2,5 * 2,5 inch).
The overall view:

2010/01/14

Quilled card for wedding

This is a card my collegue asked me to make for her sister's wedding.


She asked to use white and red colors in that card, plus "something pale" - which I decided to make pink. The leaves on the card were dark green, but when I finished the card and looked on it critically - I though it was too gloomy, but everything was glued on and ready, and the only way to fix it was to paint the leaves. And so I did - painted half of the greenery in light-green with acrylic paints.
For this cards I used closed coils, teardrops, petals, arrows, stars (5-arm), marquises, crescents and bullets; half-open coils, quilled roses, and flowers made with punched hearts; double fringed flowers; single fringed flowers, including 2- and 3-colored ones. Looped flowers, punched flowers, etc.
Text on the card represents the names of bride and groom ("To Sveta and Kolya").
And some close-ups:

2010/01/13

Card for MIL - "Happy New Year"

There's a card I gave my mother-in-law for the new year.
I wanted to make something bright, joyful and colorful. That's what it turned out to be:


The base of the card is a regular red paper for pastels. And I drew golden snowflakes on it. First I wanted to use templates and embossing inkpad with powder, but it appeared to be blurred and untidy (upper right corner). Then I took a simple gel-pen (I don't have that special one for wet embossing), drew the snowflakes by hand, applied golden powder and heated above the stove.
Actually I liked what I got:



Also I used golden cardstock with "jute" embossing, cut with figure scissors and a corner punch. The Xmas tree was inspired by a tutorial by aphina-art - but I made it easier. I didn't do the paper myself, I took a regular green piece of paper, made it wet and wrinkled it. Then brushed the edges and wrinkles with golden pad. The tree is decorated with Rayher half-beads and micro-beads for manicure ;)






The title is embroidered with a red thread upon a "jute" golden cardstock. And attached to a transparent red ribbon. With golden punched snowflakes.
I have to say I like the result.
Photos can be enlarged by clicking and feedback is welcome =)

2010/01/12

Cat cards - silhouette and little pop-up

Once upon a time my friend asked me to make a card for her fellow cat-lover. Later she rejected the idea, but I had already created a list of "cat card ideas". One of the ideas I "scraplifted" at Etsy, by pocketstudio. It's easy, elegant and simply charming.
I loved the idea so much that I made my own version of "Balancing cat":


That's how it looks in full size:


For this card I used paper for watercoloring and my CraftRobo.

The reaction of my friends to those cats was inspiring, so I continued - made another silhouette cat card.

And there's the whole card:

Different cats, I tried to make their poses as feline and elegant as I could. Also I added more floral touches, colored the card with pencils a little bit and added a touch of handmade imitation of "flower soft", which is actually a finely cut bath sponge of various colors, that gave the card some extra dimension.

And the third card of these series is a "Happy new year" card for my brother and his girlfriend.



That's how it looks when standing:

Again CraftRobo helps is used. Cats, window, snowflakes, door, wreath and a cat-entrance. When the door is opened the written greeting can be read. And you also can see a piece of an Xmas tree behind the window.
So, when you open the card there comes a light pop-up:

A decorated Xmas tree.

2010/01/11

Happy New Year card: quilling and pop-up

With this year I'm going to start using this blog in english for anyone who's interested. Maybe this year will help me find new friends =)

So, I'm starting with a "Happy new year" card.
The front cover:


All pictures can be enlarged by clicking on them.
The front cover is made with technique quilling: a fir tree and a phrase "С Новым годом" (happy new year in Russian) on it. First I formed and glued on the edges, and then filled the inner spaces.
The inside of the card was created as my first try of a pop-up technique:




A landscape: a house, a few fir trees, raccoon and tiger figurines (me and my husband), snowdrifts - everything cut with CraftRobo. Colored with pencils; the "main" tree is decorated with sequins, silver string and beads. There's dark sky above it all, if you lift it there will be clouds and snowflakes (tied to the clouds with silver strings)


A close-up of the characters:

Comments and feedback are welcome =)