Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Review: Faber-Castell Rue de Paris Watercolour Cards

I'm sure everyone has heard of Faber-Castell, I have used their pens in particular on and off for many years. I recently (ish!) received this set by Faber-Castell from a friend, intended for you to paint your own watercolour cards inspired by Paris. The set includes 6 white cards with envelopes, a black pen, 4 watercolour pencils, a paintbrush, and some colourful brads and flower sequins.

The cards are really well done, and I would say suitable for any skill level. The design is printed on to the cards in the palest blue ink (which thankfully isn't water-soluble!) Using these light marks it is possible to colour in the sections as you please before outlining over the top. The design is forgiving and allows some room for manipulation. Whilst the four coloured watercolour pencils included in the set can make a wide range of colours, I chose to use my full range of watercolour pencils to colour this card to achieve more tonal variation.

I personally didn't feel that the brads or sequin flowers suited this particular card design, so I added some extra details with gold Liquid Pearls. The envelopes included in the set are made from a parchment-type paper, and are perfect for tracing elements of the design to. I love decorating envelopes, especially when I can tie the envelope design to the card design!

This is a lovely set from Faber-Castell and there are more in the series I would like to try. I do recommend them if you want to fiddle with some watercolour painting without designing an image from scratch! Saying that, I'm not sure I can find these for sale anywhere...

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Butterfly Card

Butterflies are such beautiful, delicate creatures. I wanted to send a friend a card that was butterfly themed to decorate her room, and I thought how cool it would be if it could fold up small and open into a big butterfly! Butterflies can look plain when their wings are folded, but when they are stretched out their beauty and detail really shines.

I drew myself a template, which you might have noticed me share over on the Facebook. I attached some beautiful textured paper from my stash to some sturdy white card, and cut around the template.

I wanted some extra interest to the butterfly, and so decorated it with pearl paints and liquid pearls. This adds some lovely shimmer and picks out some interesting details without making the entire card too busy.

What I love most about this design is it can be cut from a piece of A5 card, and fold up to fit in an A6 envelope. The fold works for giving the card enough structure to stand and it implies the body of the butterfly. There is plenty of room for writing inside without compromising on the butterfly shape, and there is the magic of opening what appears to be a standard card to find a huge butterfly inside!

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Accessories Holder

My youngest niece recently celebrated her 5th Birthday, and as many of us girls do, she loves her hair accessories! I recently saw this idea online, and thought it would be perfect for her. I'm sure it won't organise her entire collection, but it at least allows her to display and easily access her favourites :)

Assembly was fairly simple, once I had the right equipment! I began with a 15cm square canvas, and attached a layer of wadding on top of it so that there was some give. I cut a square of fabric from my stash (I used to have some of this fabric attached to my jeans!), and attached various ribbons to make four strips. I also attached two small loops at the bottom to hang hairbands from.

I attached a hanging loop at the top, and stitched a ribbon bow on for some extra prettiness :) This particular ribbon bow actually came tying up a set of pyjamas - remember to never throw anything away! I then spread the fabric over the canvas, stapling it at the back. I originally tried to do this by opening my normal stapler out to use as a staple gun, but it was not going well! Thankfully my father-in-law stepped in with a proper staple gun, which worked much better :)

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Summer Brights Birthday Cards

I recently went through a pile of Craftseller magazines from a couple of years ago, and found in them a whole selection of craft papers I had forgotten about! It's lead to some experimenting of mixing patterns and colours I wouldn't normally use, inspired by the graphics provided. It's been a lot of fun :)

This gorgeous tag with the red polka dot balloon was included in the range. I was even more impressed that I had a pink paper in my stash that (nearly!) perfectly matched the pink edge of the tag. I raised the tag with 3D dots, and added a little ribbon bow so it would appear tied on.

I loved this Birthday Wishes graphic, and how it had matching floral papers. I stuck with the red and white theme, mounting it on some hammered white card and red paper. I'm not used to using a graphic as bold as the red and white zig zags (or chevrons, as they're called these days!) but I think I made the balance of pattern work, and raising the graphic off the background helped.

I used some of the floral papers in this card too, for a friend who has a sweet tooth! The colour combination is so bright and fresh, but the empty space balances out the amount of pattern. Although I have to admit to finding these off shaped graphics awkward to work with!

I love this polka dot balloon, and used it to make a smaller card. The graphic uses off white rather than pure white, so I reflected this in the hammered ivory paper, and then picked up the red again in the "gingham" paper. I love the turquoise and red together!

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