Tuesday, November 26, 2013

New Old Treasures

Daughter and I went to one of our favorite antique shows last weekend. Unfortunately, it was also the day Winter decided to arrive. But ice and snow wasn't going to keep us away from discovering some "new" old treasures.

I found some old metals - two cookie cutters and nine awesome vintage clips made in Germany (perfect for Studio projects!):

Some beautiful ceramics - two small horses that reminded me of one my paternal grandmother gave me when I was very young:

And an adorable set of Beswick bunnies - for half the price someone else wanted for them when I spotted a set at an antique shop over the summer!

A few regal items for my Victorian Studio - a Coronation plate from 1902:

And a Canadian Provost Corps cap badge. Love anything with a crown; these both have a bonus with a lion wearing a crown too!

Of course, I told daughter to be on the lookout for any vintage Christmas. Pickings were slim, but she did find some small glass ornies in a great old box. All I found was this poor glass bird without a tail. Since it was only $2, I decided to adopt it into my family of vintage ornaments:

When I got it home though, I realized there was something inside the bird. I pulled... and out popped the tail! In perfect silky condition. What a great surprise!

Actually that was my second surprise of the day - daughter found this mica-dusted deer and gave to me to join my ever-growing deer herd.

So despite the awful weather, we had a wonderful time. In fact, BECAUSE it was so nasty out, the show was a delight to roam about without the usual crowds!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Steampunk Journal

It all started a few weeks ago... I was watching my favorite paper crafter on YouTube:  sweet Anne from Anne's Paper Creations, and was intrigued with how she was making the spine of a book in her "How To Make A Mini-Album From Start To Finish".

So I took down some notes and before I knew it, I was making my very own journal along with this fabulous teacher. Even though I only had 2 of the 5 sheets of 12 x 12 black cardstock she recommends for the pages (isn't that always the way), I still had a few 12 x 12 sheets and a 6 x 6 pad of Graphic 45's "Steampunk Spells" left over from Halloween, a 12 x 12 pad of Recollections "Steampunk Botanica" and an 8 x 8 pad of "Typography" paper from Graphic 45 so I could try it with those... hmm...

I decided to create a Steampunk-themed journal / tag book just for fun. I also still had a bunch of metal charms from my Steampunk Carnival project, so I began. Two weeks later, I can finally say I am finished. The book measures about 5" x 7". Here's the cover - the spine of which was embossed in my Cuttlebug and covered with a few coats of Claudine Hellmuth's Multi-Matte Medium to make it strong but flexible. The chipboard covers were painted black and black lace is layered underneath the image. Click to biggify all the images.

Such a great image from Steampunk Spells by Graphic 45.
Metal gears and a chain of charms were added to the chipboard book cover

Even though the spine has binding flaps for a mere five pages, with Anne's ingenious paper folding and cutting, you end up with 46 pages (48 if you include the inside covers. Which I do.)  Needless to say, with all my embellishments this book is bursting and can barely close even with a chain to hold it somewhat shut.

More charms added to the closure chain.
That's an earring part I used for a clip
A closer look at some of the pages:

A mixture of the different paper lines; fussy cut and attached with a variety of Multi-Matte, Glossy Accents and ScorTape.

Punches, Cricut, Cuttlebug... I used them all in this project! Some flaps have thin magnets to snap them closed. Tim Holtz gears, attachers, Distress Inks, stamps and charms were also used.

The really thin gears are by "Bead Landing" in the jewelry section at Michaels - a set of 90 gears were less than $3 on sale. So yeah, I picked up a few packages of those!

That orange strip was black cardstock and using my fingers, I rubbed it with copper paste (Inka Gold Metallic Rub) and ran it through my Cuttlebug to create an embossed "riveted" look. Metal frames were popped up on foam dimensionals to hold tags too.

Well, since it's hard to show you exactly how the pages fold and tags are stored, I decided to make a video. It's my very first attempt; so please don't laugh too hard. You can biggify full screen to see better, and the sound is quite low so you may need to increase the volume:

Thank you so much Anne, for your wonderful tutorials and inspiration! I hope I did you proud.

I know I loved making it!

Friday, November 15, 2013

Catching Up

What is it about short weeks that make them seem longer than a normal week? Maybe it's because we only have 4 days to squeeze in 5 day's worth of work... in any case, I was way too tired the past few days to make any progress on my latest project. And when I'm tired, I know I must not even try to be creative; or I'll screw it up.

So hopefully tomorrow I will be able to put the finishing touches on it. In the meantime, it's a great time to catch up on some things I haven't shared previously.

First up, an amazing gift sent to me from a good blogger buddy, Kathy at Kluless. She came across this incredible buffalo plaque during one of her shopping ventures in her hometown of Portland, Oregon. It's inscribed "Canada's National Parks 1937". I have no idea what it is from, but when I asked if she would sell it, she popped it in the mail back to Canada and gifted it to lucky me - along with a lovely doily and vintage ephemera! How awesome is she? It is really so very cool and now is front and center on my Studio desk. I absolutely love it!

Daughter and I will be going to our annual Fall Antique Show this weekend, which reminded me that on our last antiquing trip, I found a third member to my Putz sheep family. In 2012, I discovered the Momma sheep for a mere $10 at a local shop. Then a few months back I found the girl lambie (see the pink collar?) at an Antique Mall downtown. Well, that last time we went antiquing, I went back to the very same dealer in the Mall and there sat the "brother lambie" (blue collar!). I guess all I need now is the Daddy ram ;) But they make a cute wooly family, no?

Daughter does very well antiquing on her own too... when she was down in the States, she brought me back this incredible antique silver mouse pin cushion! What a great accompaniment to my squirrel! Am I lucky or what? It is beautifully detailed and very old - perfect for my sewing shelf. So very awesome.

Speaking of mice, back in October I gave myself a birthday gift ;) A collectibles shop near work had just opened and during lunch on my birthday I decided to take a walk and check out what they had to offer. Most things were way too expensive, but when I spotted this guy for a reasonable price I just knew I had to bring him home. He reminds me of the old cartoons I loved (and still love) to watch... but so far I haven't been able to find out exactly WHO he is... if anyone knows, please share!

He was covered in dirt and dust, hidden in the back of a bottom shelf in a crowded barrister's cabinet. I carefully gave him a cleanup with a warm wet Q-Tip to make him shine. He's is perfect condition!

Who could resist that face? Not moi.

Some wonderful additions to my Studio's treasure trove.

Maybe on Sunday, I'll find a couple more ;)

Thursday, November 7, 2013

We Interrupt This Crafting Blog...

... whilst I continue to work on a large project I hope to reveal very soon.

In the meantime, please enjoy the following Non-Arsty/Crafty Post.

A couple of weeks ago, I was extremely lucky to attend a medical conference in Orlando. I had never been to Florida and since I was going for free, I HAD to make it to two places I have been dreaming of seeing: Disney World and The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. I've already posted on my other blog about my adventures at Disney World.

It was a lot of fun, but I must say, my favorite part of the trip was Hogsmeade and Hogwarts. Warning: there are a lot of magical photos ahead - wave your wand (or mouse click if you're a Muggle) to biggify!

The entrance

I will admit to feeling giddy upon walking into Hogsmeade

It was nigh-impossible to get a shot of this without someone posing in front

The clock tower - very surreal to see "snow" in Florida! But it was a perfectly-overcast cool morning

Inside the clock tower - the Steampunk lover in me adored all the gears!

The bathrooms (entrance at the left) even had Moaning Myrtle to keep you company

The Three Broomsticks - I would have loved to eat here, but sadly had to meet friends somewhere else for dinner (Rats!)

Hogsmeade is filled with shoppes - some open for business, some not. But each one had wonderful window displays to behold.

Potage's New and Second-Hand Cauldrons (some self-stirring!)

Zonko's Joke Shop!

Inside Zonko's

Large moving chess pieces in Zonko's window

Quidditch supply shoppe

The Owl Post

Loved this measuring-tape cat in front of Hermoine's Yule Ball dress at Gladrags Wizardwear

Bertie Bott's Every Flavour Beans at Honeydukes

Chocolate Frogs, natch (the images in the cards moved)

This huge box opened up causing the frog to jump and croak!

And gobs of other confectioneries

Of course I had to get a wand at Olivanders

After making some purchases, I finally made it to the castle.

I couldn't believe I was really there

Hogs (natch) at the entrance

Because I was on my own, I got whisked through a special corridor, past the crowds lined up and was able to tour the Castle all alone and at my own pace! It was incredible to walk up the staircases, the paintings talking to you, and no one to block my view.

Dumbledore's office

The Headmaster made an appearance asking us to please report any dragon sightings

Harry, Ron and Hermione appeared from under the Invisbility Cloak in the Defense Against The Dark Arts Room

I also took the Forbidden Journey ride... quite by mistake, however. More about THAT can be found HERE on my other blog.

After wandering about the castle, I went back outside and tried some Butterbeer. It's not beer at all; but rather a butterscotch flavored drink. I chose the "frozen" version which was like a Slurpee with a sweet foam topping. It actually helped me get over the effects of the Forbidden Journey escapade!

All this snow really made you feel cool!

The Snowman didn't mind at all when Sam (my traveling companion) and I sat beside him for a bit enjoying the frozen Butterbeer

There was even entertainment!

The Hogwart's Choir - complete with two croaking toads

Durmstrang demonstrated their martial-arts style skillz

Beauxbatons students performed a lovely ribbon dance

Of course I had to bring home a few souvenirs for daughter, hubby and my Studio:

Postcards, mugs, patches and my Harry Potter wand

Meggie modelling the latest in Gryffindor fashion

What a trip! If you want to go, wait until next summer... they are adding Diagon Alley!

Since we have a long weekend coming up, I am looking forward to staying indoors while the snow falls and finish my large project. Hopefully I will be posting about it by Monday!

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