Wednesday 29 November 2017

2017 #18 Torn, Ripped, Burnt: Torn Memories with VID {by Lynne Moncrieff}

2017 Topic 18: Torn, Ripped, Burnt

It's always a treat when one of our bloggers lets you inside their head; explains how they think, how they create, how they arrange... and it's super-fun when that head belongs to Lynne Moncrieff!

Hi everyone, it's Lynne Moncrieff, Adorn, with you today, and I'd like to share with you a project which found me immersed in my comfort zone where I dipped into many of my tried and trusted favourites to achieve a torn, ripped appearance.  I will throw my hands up in the air, I did not actually burn any items!  In my defence, I hope that some of the  elements have a burnt appearance even though I did not set light to anything. 

The beauty of such a project, items can be hunted and gathered from around the home and garden, a perfect project for re-cycling textiles, found papers and all manner of goodies.  Investing some preparation time in tea/coffee staining and placing bundles of gathered items outside to weather/rust will pay you in dividends. When moving onto creating the project, there is a wealth of stained and weathered items to select from.

I worked with the wonderful PaperArtsy Vintage Ink and the Dog Collection: set 06, the woman on tag stamp being the central figure in the narrative, the other stamps playing an important supportive role in her story. The high quality of PaperArtsy stamps ensured that I had confidence they would stamp onto a variety of collected surfaces:

I will happily while away time preparing bundles.  Vintage tart tins, wrapped with a mixture of textiles and papers, alongside vintage keys, crochet lace, safety pins.... laid outside, either doused in vinegar, tea or coffee with Mother Nature bringing rain and wind to distress the various items.

Patiently waiting for the items to be weathered, broken down, rusted, a little bit battered and torn, before bringing indoors to dry thoroughly. A beautiful tactile collection of textures in a variety of colour tones which will sit side by side harmoniously.

The pleasure in rooting around home and garden, discovering items to incorporate into projects, items which might appear insignificant at first sight but the magic is, they will soon become part of the story that is woven into the artwork. 

I never tire of tea and/or coffee baths. I used them in two ways, to stain virgin items as above but also placing some of the items that had already been outside, playing around with items which have been weathered and then dipping them into the baths, lots of interesting variations can take place, sometimes producing a very dark, almost black/grey colour. 

Vintage ID06

Having a plethora of prepared papers, textiles and extras to stamp onto is in itself inspirational especially when the stamp designs are so in tune with the aged appearance of the papers and textiles, as though each fragment has been unearthed from the past.

When working on such a multi-layered project, I have learned that there is a moment of restraint required from wanting to stamp everything in sight, ultimately there is a fine line, a balancing act of placing stamped elements alongside elements which are allowed to breathe, with no addition of stamping as they paint the narrative as much as stamped pieces.

Sometimes with layers, whether paint, stamping or textiles, they might not be evident to a viewer but that does not make them any less worthy of being included in a project.  For me, layers bring intrigue and in this project the layers symbolize the layers of her life, as though she might be flicking through the pages of her mind, looking at her past.

A wooden vintage clothes peg and craft peg, given a slightly burnt appearance from being weathered with the addition of dipped into a coffee bath. The clothes peg brings visual weight to the top of the assemblage, layered onto a variety of textiles all with torn, raggedy edges, including the fragment of lace which tops of the focal images.

When editing photos, my eye was caught by the fact that this element could be a mini assemblage, ideas already circulating in my head for future projects. . 

Torn, ripped edges of found papers, cardboard paper, calico, all previously stained and weathered with the addition of some of the edges being dipped into coffee or tea, with loose hand-stitched threads adding to the overall distressed appearance, as though memories that are fragile, about to be whisked off in a passing breeze as she desperately tries to grasp hold of those fading memories.

When you take the time to stain, rust, weather, it connects you even moreso with your project. Although ultimately, you cannot control the outcome of any of those processes, you are invested as you patiently wait for the result to unfold.

Try, if possible to re-cycle items or utilize found items as it is so rewarding when those items are transformed into a project.  When sourcing items, keep in mind that a variety of surfaces will not only bring more visual interest to your project, it also heightens the pleasure of stamping and can sometimes result in viewing a stamp with new eyes.

For me, such projects are layers of joy.  From the moment I begin gathering items to the  staining and weathering,I treasure those times as they are meditative, a time when the creative brain is on a different frequency, allowing ideas to brew.  It is also a time to simply experiment, play around with different textures, notice how some tear/rip differently creating different torn edges, some might not stain, rust as successfully as others.  

As for the tea baths, add a dash of Infusions. There is no right or wrong so long as you ensure you are not working with fumes, anything which could be toxic and be careful when handling rusted items, in other words, be creative and play but keep safety in mind.
My mind is already brewing with project ideas and yes, next time I will be burning something up!

Blog: Adorn

You do this beautifully! I love the loosely gathered and gently stitched elements, dangling thread, frayed lace, newly stamped papers that look old and weathered. It all comes together with your attention to detail in such a thoughtful manner! Taking time to enjoy the process certainly reaps rewards!Thank you for such an insightful post! ~Leandra

We always hope that you  learn something interesting from our blog

Our creative team love to read your comments so much, so please take time to let them know you've been inspired!  

Why not join our 2-weekly challenge by blogging your create response to the current topic and link it here?

The current topic link Topic 18: Torn, Ripped, Burnt will close 17:00 (London Time) Sunday, 10th December 2017, and the winner will be announced 2 hours later at 19:00.

All links go in the draw to win a £50 voucher to spend on products of your choice from the PaperArtsy online store.

Monday 27 November 2017

2017 #18 Torn, Ripped, Burnt: Lutradur with JoFy {by Chris Dark}

2017 Topic 18: Torn, Ripped, Burnt

I love it when we get a technique pop up outside of the usual - this is one of those! Enjoy!

Hi everyone, it's Chris with you today, and I'd like to share with you a couple of items I've made for this fortnights topic, Torn, ripped, burnt; all topics that appeal to me because they create texture and an extra level of interest to a project. 

Lutradur fabric came to mind as perfect to incorporate the techniques and create fantastic texture for my backgrounds. Lutradur is a spun bound non woven stabiliser often used in quilting and dimensional free style embroidered art, qualities of the fabric are that it can be dyed, stamped, die cut, painted with water based paint or acrylic and heated with a heat gun or soldering iron to give bubbled texture, holes and lacing. I decided to try painting it this time with acrylic paint as previously I've only used water based mediums. I've also had fun with the gorgeous JOFY winter stamp set JOFY58

I found a great little frame with a layered mount allowing room for the dimensional fabric and the fussy cut JOFY Snowman that I watercoloured with Inktense pencils.

This is how the Lutradur looks before the painting and heating is done, if you sew you may be familiar with the appearance of it as it is similar to iron on interfacing. You can embroider the fabric and then paint it and the stitching becomes a resist during the heating process.

I've painted the a Lutradur to see how it would affect the heating process. I used a gorgeous combination of Fresco Finish Chalk Paints in Lavender, South Pacific, Stone and Chalk.

When the paint was completely dry I applied heat with a heat gun and after a few seconds the fabric starts to pucker and lace into tiny or larger holes depending how close the heat gun is to the fabric and for how long. You can see all the lovely texture above. Take care as the fabric can disintegrate if the heat is applied for too long. Use a heat gun with care, it will become very hot and I recommend using a tool to hold the fabric down as it's lightweight and this will protect your fingers too.

I also made a Christmas card with the baubles stamp, watercolouring as before and this time leaving the Lutradur unpainted. I also die cut the stars that you can see in the framed piece from this piece of fabric.

You can see here how I've manipulated the heating of the Lutradur to create larger holes in some places and a ripped style edging by allowing the fabric to curl. I have a dual speed heat gun and I kept it on the lower setting and about one centimetre above the fabric.

Here's a closer look at the texture on the painted Lutradur where I went over it with gilding wax to highlight it, I backed the Lutradur with white paper to show through where there were holes.

This was the first time I had painted Lutradur with acrylic paint and I liked how the process turned out. I've learned that keeping the paint to one layer and thinned down gave the best results for the lacey holes effect, when the paint was thicker I got more of a puckering effect. I also like that you can choose which side of the fabric to use as you get a positive and negative from the heating, it's great that the paint goes right through to the other side too. It's an enjoyable learning curve finding the optimum time to heat the fabric and how close to hold the heat gun and you pretty much have to be accepting of what you get but that is the fun of creating so I hope you will have a go and join us in the challenge.

Thanks for joining me and I hope you have a creative week.
Chris x

Instgram: @chrisd999

Find my classes at The Craft Barn

Fantastic backgrounds Chris - you have certainly mastered the controlling of the fabric with heat! Beaautiful

We always hope that you learn something interesting from our blog.

Our creative team love to read your comments so much, so please take time to let them know you've been inspired!

Why not join our 2-weekly challenge by blogging your create response to the current topic and link it here? 

The current topic link Topic 18: Torn, Ripped, Burnt will close 17:00 (London Time) Sunday, 10th December 2017, and the winner will be announced 2 hours later at 19:00.

All links go in the draw to win a £50 voucher to spend on products of your choice from the PaperArtsy online store.

Sunday 26 November 2017

2017 Topic 18: Torn,Ripped and Burnt {Intro and challenge}

 2017 Topic 18: Torn, Ripped and Burnt

Welcome to a new topic everyone, Darcy here to talk about our latest theme. This fortnight we will be looking at ways to distress art work in very specific ways, using tearing, ripping and burning. 

Before we start, let's see who won the Topic 17: Shades of White Challenge...

The winner is: Gail from Crafty Nomad

Email Darcy to claim your prize.

As is often the case, the techniques we use in our art stem from ancient techniques, and paper tearing is no exception. In the 11th century the Japanese were tearing paper, usually handmade, and creating pieces of art. These pieces were quite delicate and often resembled watercolour paintings, known as Chigiri-e they had calligraphy over the top. 

Barbara Hamer
Moving forward to the 20th century saw Pablo Picasso and Georges Braques coin the phrase 'collage' 


Here is a modern collage, beautifully executed, all those ripped pieces forming these gorgeous otters. Choose your pieces based on colour and scale of pattern. 

Dawn Maciocia
We also use tearing and ripping as a way to distress and interest to edges. This lovely Christmas layout has been made much more dimensional because of the paper edges being torn. 

Basic Grey
These layered Christmas cards use torn edges too mixed in with cut edges, it really does pay to mix them up the torn edges make for wonderful shapes. 

Michelle Wooderson

Torn paper makes a great mask or stencil, Barbara has used a torn scrap of paper here on her gelli plate, the paper stops the paint in that area from reaching the cardstock, resulting in this negative space with interesting edges. 

Barbara Gray

Similarly, Eileen has used a torn paper mask to create the landscapes on this tag. You could also use the edge of this stencil PS030

Eileen Godwin

Here is another way to layer up your torn and ripped edges, as different sizes of pages these make a really interesting and tactile art journal, each page gives a glimpse beyond to the next page. 


Torn edges also look great in backgrounds, wash a little diluted paint over the edges just to blend them a little. 

Another great background, this time the artist has torn lovely stained teabags and layered them over text, as the teabag paper is translucent the text shows through. Follow the link to see how she added sketching and stamping over the top of the teabags to create a beautiful piece. 

Becca Kirkland

Torn paper can be combined with drawings , fabric and stitching to create free hanging pieces of art. 

Philippa Leith
This piece was created on torn corrugate card, itself having the surface torn away, this was done by an Alevel student. 

Another piece, torn, stamped, folded, layered and stitched. 
Miss Stitch Therapy

Our own Jo Firth Young loves torn corrugate card, she turns it into the most beautiful pieces of art. 

Jo Firth Young

I think my favourite ripped piece has to be this dog, ripping fabric is just so satisfying, and it creates wonderful raggy edges, use them to wrap around books or loop through the tops of tags, use ripped fabric to make flowers or just to layer up. leave all those loose threads hanging, they look great. 

Barbara Franc
This simple piece introduces burning, along with the clean white card and glimpses of gold leaf this looks so fresh. This has been done using a blowtorch and a branding iron, but you could achieve similar results with a soldering iron or a wood burning tool. 

Kelly O'Brien
This piece is 4 layers of Abaca paper,( this is a plant fiber from the banana tree) the holes are made with a soldering iron. 

Karen Margolis
For a rustic Christmas how about making these wood burnt snowmen. 

Burnwood Creations
I love this piece, so sculptural but yet delicate with its singed edges. 


I wasn't sure at first about singed clothing, but the more I look the more I like this, how could you incorporate this idea into your work? perhaps singed layers on a book cover or on the dress of a doll, or even singed fabric pieces on a card. 

Judith Orshalimian
A great way to add a burning technique is to simply use your heat gun, if you hold it over paint long enough it will bubble and blister and singe. Do be very careful, do this in a ventilated room and do not allow the artwork to set alight. The blisters which are then raised can be brushed over with Treasure Gold to highlight the texture. 

Andy Skinner
Heat guns can be used on fabric too, you can burn through dried out baby wipes, through sheer fabrics, through tyvek, so many ways you can experiment with burning. 

This sample is layers of tyvek stitched and zapped with a heat gun. 

Kim Thittichai

I just had to finish with this burnt offering, how many of us have burned toast, everyone right?but have you ever made a portrait with your burnt toast?

Henry Hargreaves

Summary....  Have fun!

Don't forget to follow Darcy and Leandra's Pinterest boards if this topic pushes your buttons, you will see plenty more examples to whet your appetite there! 
I am really looking forward to seeing what you create over the next 2 weeks!

~ Darcy

We hope that you  learn something interesting from our blog. Our bloggers deeply appreciate your comments so much, so please take time to let them know you've been inspired! Why not join our challenge by blogging your interpretation of the current topic and link it here?

The current topic link will close 17:00 (London Time) Sunday, 10th Dec 2017, and the winner will be announced 2 hours later at 19:00.

All links go in the draw to win a £50 voucher to spend on products of your choice from the PaperArtsy online store.

Challenge Guidelines

  • The challenge is a for you to show how you are inspired by the current blog topic. We encourage you to play with us and explore your personal creative style.
  • Please mention which PA blog post inspired you and and why (link directly to that post). Please don't link to the home page of your blog because then no-one can track back to easily find the original post.
  • We prefer your challenge blog post is created exclusive to our challenge, but if our topic fits perfectly with another challenge, then you may link to both if appropriate.
  • You are most welcome to use stamps/ products/ substrates you have to hand from a variety of companies, we do not expect you to exclusively use PA products - it's lovely when you do though!
  • You can enter as many times as you like. We don't want to restrict your creativity! 
NB. Link closes at 17:00 Sunday 10th December  (London Time)

Prize: The winner will receive a £50 credit voucher to be redeemed on the PaperArtsy Website. The credit voucher includes VAT and postage. We request that one of your purchases is an A5 rubber stamp. You can add any other items to your basket, but the final total should not exceed £50. It's your responsibility to claim your prize coupon from Darcy. 

NEW Challenge/ winner: Each fortnight on Sunday, the winner will be announced at 19:00 (London time). In the same post, the link for the next fortnight will be posted. 

Good Luck! If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask!