Thursday, February 23, 2012

Bathroom Cuteness..With a few tips on making collages

Okay, so if you are tuning in to see how my craft area is coming along, don't even bother...I have been up to much more fun things!   I *will* continue on my craft, but today I am going to share with you a project that I am making for my bathroom.   My bathroom was originally a leaf/woodsy decor, but that is changing, apparently, due to a rug that I am making with a rose design (I don't know where else to put it) and this image:

Isn't she adorable?  I thank 2nd Time Around at:  for this precious little gal.  I couldn't resist putting her in my own bathroom!

To start.....

What I did first, and what I always do, is tear the edges around my image.  You do not have to do this.  I have seen many a collage in which the artist did not tear, but rather cut the image out.  And it looks good!  I just always end up tearing my edges.  I am a natural 'tear-er', I guess. 

When you tear edges and are making a 'vintage-inspired' piece, you need to 'ink the edges' as well:

Again, this is my personal opinion, but it gives it that extra-aged look.  Next....paper scraps!  We now know why I have a ton of paper scraps that don't make it to the garbage.  I can't seem to throw them away...for reasons such as this!

 Again, ink the edges:

Now, as you can see in the photo, to ink my edges this time, I simply used normal brown scrapbooking ink and a sponge.  This is fine, but note: Any sealer that you use on your project will cause your ink to change color.  A far better choice is Stazon ink.  It does not discolor when adding sealer and glue.  I will show you an example later on.

Next, I took my canvas and painted the edges.   I have learned from experience that painting first is much easier than painting edges later, so try to make that decision ahead of time as to whether you need to paint or not.  However, it isn't horribly painful to do afterwards, so if you are like me and change your mind two hundred times for any minor decision, don't fret!  It can be done, but painting first is just smarter and easier in the long-run.  I used a copper color paint...and then sponged over it for an aged look:

 Then, glue your image to your board:

Then, you simply find doo-dads and different items to add.  

Here is a tip.  This is important.  If you are going to work with printed off images, you have to seal everything.  If you don't, the mod podge, glue, or whatever you are working with will smear your image...unless you are only gluing the back.   

This beautiful image and the other one on my collage, along with the scrabble piece images are  from  
(Amazing seller with awesome customer service!)

I use a spray sealer to seal my images.  You can find spray sealer in Matte or Glossy.  At this time, I am using Mod Podge spray.  Do I like it?  It's okay.  It isn't my favorite and the smell is horrendous (seriously, I don't think it could get any worse), but it works fine.  Spray outdoors or in a box that you have set up for spraying in.  

Okay, so here is my piece as it is left right now hanging on my wall.  I have decided that the scrabble piece squares at the top right will be replaced with real scrabble pieces to give it more texture.  But I love those little image pieces!  They look 'real enough' for now. A person could actually use those and a-fix them to blank wood pieces for that 'real' scrabble piece affect as well!  I will also probably add a metal heart charm and/or maybe change out the stamped circles for buttons.  Not sure yet...we will see.  So many things that you can do!

I told you that I would give you an example of using scrapbook ink vs. Stazon ink.  As I said before, it is wise to use a more permanent ink like Stazon ink when using sealer, glue, etc.  This is for the same reason that you spray images....So they don't bleed or change color on you.  

If you remember, I used regular scrapbooking ink, apparently at the time I had forgotten my own tip, as I realized that when I sprayed the stamped images...  the ink turned green.   So now my circles, instead of brown, are green.  I also had not spray sealed my rose paper scrap that I had inked the edges on...and the edges of that greened also.  This is why you should always spray everything at the beginning of your project, so you don't forget anything as I did, especially if you are going to work on it for awhile, put it away, and then finish it at a later time.  On this piece, I don't mind too much as they look fine matched with the green in the lovely gals gown, but on other pieces, this would have to be a re-do for sure.  Just another tip to keep in mind!

So in a nutshell:

*Ink edges for a nice vintage-effect.  Scrapbooking ink is fine, but Stazon is better if you are going to seal or glue the top of your image.

*Mod Podge or another made-for-collage glue works much better than school glue.

*Paint edges before applying the fun stuff.

*Spray ALL and stamped...with spray sealer before gluing onto collage or your images will bleed and/or the ink will discolor.

*Spray all of your images at once, if possible, because you may forget to spray some if you walk away and finish your project at a later time.

*Above all, have fun!  

Monday, February 6, 2012

More pics of my altered art box....

I am working on the sides of the box now.  I am pleased with the way it has been coming along.

More to come!  Stop back by to see how it comes out!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Altered Art Box

Okay, so I am working on something that I have wanted to do for a very long time.  Since I am a professional procrastinator, "someday" always seems to take quite awhile to arrive...and finally the "Someday I am going to do something with the cute little cigar boxes" arrived!   

I decided to post some pics as I go along.  Hopefully I will finish my project without messing up more than I already have.  But I guess that is the great thing about these projects...If you 'mess' up, you can always just..well,  alter it!

I have already started the top of my box because I couldn't wait.  You can see the pics here.  The top isn't finished, but partially done.  So far there is only one aspect that I am not happy with...but hopefully by the time I am finished, I will make peace with it...;)

 Isn't this a gorgeous gal in this vintage image?  As soon as I can remember the site from which I printed it from, I will post it here (it's on my other computer which isn't running at the moment).  I appreciate this photo so much, I think credit is due from where I received it for free.

 Side of box.  It is only painted right now...but not for long!  Check back in to see progress...:)

These are so much fun to make!  Find old cigar boxes (usually only for sale) or one similar, add some papers, your favorite image, and little doo-dads here and there.  Try it out!