Wednesday 19 June 2024

2024 Topic 4: Books & Journals {by Renata Peley} on the PaperArtsy Blog

Hi everyone, it’s Peley Renata with you and today I’m going to start with a bit of a confession. The summer came a bit too early for me, as I’m not a really warm weather person, so this heat has scrambled my mind and taken away some craft mojo as well. When the time for this blog started closing in…gosh I felt lazy…but also, I generally try to do the responsible adult thing and so I prepped my craft table and got myself busy.

As you can see, PaperArtsy’s newest addition to the designer team – Kate Crane was quite of an inspiration for me. Those quirky, whimsical designs were just the thing that I needed to lift my spirits in these overly warm days. But let me tell you more about it.

Usually, I am not that good at being prepared, so I will show you just some of the initial supplies for this project. First and the most obvious – PaperArtsy stamp sets designed by Kate Crane: KC002 and KC004, a book, or in this case two as I still didn’t decide which one to use and some Mattints. On this photo, you can see the Dragonfly (MT07) and the Fern (MT03). I ended up using only the Dragonfly, but I must admit I am just itching to make another project using the Fern as it is such a gorgeous shade of green.

Bit by bit, I will bring a couple more craft necessities as expected, but I will explain it as I go. So, let’s get started.

The crafting process can be a messy thing without a particular order of steps, sense and organization. And what I mean by this is that while sometimes I create a background and figure out a nice focal point to fit on it, other times I first prepare my images and wait for them to inspire me for creating the background. But now, almost as if for the sake of saying how messy a process it can be – I created some focal images, then the background and then some more images. But anyway, all is good as long as we are having fun…right? 😊

As you can see on the following photo, I used the previously mentioned stamp sets from PaperArtsy and Kate Crane, Canson Mixed Media Imagine paper and Versafine Ink in the Onyx Black color.

When the images were stamped, the next step was the coloring. I wanted to create a happy place from a children story book, so I chose bright and bold colors. And since I was lucky enough to get the Caran d’Ache Luminance colored pencils for my birthday, I chose them as my coloring medium.

Remember how the sub-theme for this blogging quarter is the “hidden”? Well, this was the moment I went with preparing my hidden elements. From the stamp set KC002 I chose the stamp with multiple cute little drawings, and decided to use each of those rounded up drawings as a tab for my hidden messages. On each paper strip I either stamped or drew a different message and it looked something like this:

Well, here are my elements all ready, so what I needed to do now was to create the background.  But this is when things start to get a bit messy.

After choosing one of the books, I realized I really, but really didn’t like the cover, so I fast wrapped it with a nice floral wrapping paper. At this point I really wished I had a nice vintage book with a gorgeous hard cover. It would have been much more inspiring to work with, but fine, this one had to do and I was going to make the best of it.

After wrapping, the next thing on my to do list was to adhere the book pages. So, this is one more moment when my brain failed me. Instead of saving my time, nerves and glue and adhering the pages only at the edges, I went on to adhere the complete surface of each single page. I guess it was one of those moments when you just think: what was wrong with me? Anyway, I was a bit irritated with myself because it made my work harder later on and I wasted some perfectly fine book pages for some other projects, but I still carried on.

The general idea was to put the super cute houses somewhere in the middle of the book. I wanted to create a feeling of an inviting, cheerful little world inside of a story book. And the way I planned to realize that is to carve a bit inside the book pages to create the feeling of “the world within”. Here I had to be careful not to go too deep and damage the message pockets. And this is where I actually got annoyed about adhering the whole surface of the pages. First it was hard to carve out the glued pages and second, at this moment I realized how many good book pages I wasted as they were just a chunk of paper now. Still, yet again I carried on. We crafters are not quitters, right?!

This is now a moment when you have to think what effect you are going for. First, if you want your background a bit less busy than mine, go over those book pages with a gesso to tone it down a bit. Even a more opaque blue acrylic paint cold work. In my case, I didn’t mind the busy background so I decided to use the Mattints, to just tint my pages blue inside the carved area.

Also, you can leave it with one layer of Mattints, or apply two, like me. I mean, so many options and variations, it all depends on the effect you wish to achieve.

Anyway, it’s time to start assembling the layout. And honestly, here is just where you get even more options. For instance, after I completed my project, I kind of regretted I didn’t draw a sun and some clouds, perhaps birds, added more trees….And I can just go on and on with these.

Now I am closing to the end of my project, but I just needed a couple of touches. I bet you can guess at least one of them.

If in the previous section you thought I missed a quote, you guessed right. I decided to stamp a lovely sentiment about home from the KC004 on a book paper. It helped fill all that empty space I had going on, but for some more touch of color, I stamped, colored and adhered a couple of cute little banners in the top right corner.

Aaaand that’s it! I must admit, this craft session was a bit of a bumpy ride, but it was worth it in the end. My kids said they want this piece to decorate their room and, in my eyes, there is no bigger praise than that. Also, I must say, working with the Kate’s designs was quite a pleasure. They are so cheerful, adorable, and inspiring and I am really happy that she is a part of the PaperArtsy designer team.

For all of you who are more visual types, and who wish to hear my rant about the difficulties I had with this project, I have prepared a YouTube video as well.

Thank you all for spending some time with me and I wish you a nice crafty day!

Renata 💜

1 comment:

Words and Pictures said...

Such a colourful treat!
Alison x