Monday, August 21, 2017

Magic Stamp Textures by Judi Kauffman for The Queen’s Ink

If you’ve got Magic Stamp blocks, a heat tool and ink you’re never going to be bored!

This week the ivy on our back fence decided to send up little branches with berries. I snipped a few pieces and brought them to my work table. A sheet of circle-shaped labels was sitting off to the side. I put the two together, got out a Magic Stamp block and my trusty heat tool, and created a stamp.

I spent an hour stamping pieces of cardstock to be used as postcards or incorporated into collage or other projects. And a dozen envelopes, just because I love decorating envelopes…

One thing led to another. I decided to add some texture to the cardstock, so I got out dimensional paints and glitter, as well as some iridescent acrylic paints.

While I was at it, I reached for one of my oldest Magic Stamp blocks. Even though you can wash, dry, re-heat to erase and then re-use the blocks, I keep my favorites. (For a long time - this one was made back in the 1990s, pressed against Mardi Gras beads, a bracelet and a tangle of rubber bands!)

I stamped and added texture to some more pieces of cardstock.

Please come on back next Tuesday, August 29, to see how I’ve combined the pieces from today’s post with the altered collage papers from last week!

  • Magic Stamp blocks
  • Heat tool
  • Low relief textures (botanicals, beads, and more)
  • Cardstock
  • Dye-based inks
  • Nuvo Crystal Drops
  • Dimensional paints
  • Iridescent paints
  • Paintbrushes

Monday, August 14, 2017

Altered Collage Papers – Part 1 by Judi Kauffman for The Queen’s Ink

This is one of the easiest projects ever and it’s an idea you can use again and again! Here’s the recipe:

1. Gather some solid color and pre-printed papers in a variety of weights. (I chose handmade mulberry paper.)

2. Randomly stamp and/or paint on each sheet. (I used metallic and iridescent acrylics, dye-based and metallic inks.)

3. Cut and tear up the sheets and combine them, using additional altered or un-altered sheets as a substrate. Mix in additional solid color papers, origami papers, or whatever catches your eye. (Use whatever adhesive or medium you prefer to secure the pieces.)

4. Keep your collage paper sheets out on your work table. (Do not tuck them away or you’ll forget that you made them!)

5. Tune in on August 29 for Altered Collage Papers – Part 2. We’ll explore what to do with the collage papers. (Even though I love the sheets as is, I’m going to be fearless and cut them into pieces…)

  • Matte medium or other adhesive of choice
  • Assorted solid color and printed papers in a variety of weights
  • Stamps (large abstract, small motifs, phrases)
  • Inks
  • Iridescent and/or metallic acrylic paints or other opaque paints of choice
  • Brushes

Monday, August 7, 2017

Hanky, Thank ‘Ye by Judi Kauffman for The Queen’s Ink

I love beautiful handkerchiefs. I have many that once belonged to my mother, as well as quite a collection I’ve built on my own over the years. I scour estate sales and bring them back as souvenirs from my travels. Even the most amazing rarely cost more than a dollar and if they’re damaged they usually go for pennies.

That’s the case with the one I used for today’s project. It was in such bad shape that I didn’t feel bad about quartering it to make sachets. There are tiny little rust spots that wouldn’t wash out and one corner was badly torn, holes that could easily be camouflaged with lace.

Some other ideas before I launch into the how-to:
  • Instead of sachets, make pin cushions! (Sew an inner pillow out of sturdy muslin, fill it with sand.)
  • Instead of square sachets, make circles or rectangles. The design on the hanky will guide you in this regard.
  • Create a little pillow and sew a matching coverlet for a doll’s bed.
  • Create a collage with assorted pieces from several damaged hankies. Back with quilt batting and a rigid board; display in a frame. Or skip the board, add fabric as well as batting and make a quilted wall hanging.

Take a few minutes to look through the photo gallery before reading the instructions. If you’ve done a lot of sewing, the pictures may be all you need. If you’re a beginner, read on.


1. Find vintage (or new) hankies that won’t be ruined by being cut into pieces. If you start with a new hanky, wash it several times and/or tea dye it so it looks old!

2. Gather matching and coordinating fabrics, lace, ribbon, and beads.

3. Cut hanky into squares. Line each square with matching or contrasting fabric. Cut a square the same size for the back of each sachet. If using a contrasting fabric, use that same color for the back.

4. Embellish the front with seed beads, pearls, flower beads, ribbon rosettes, embroidery. Use thread to match the hanky, or use contrasting thread as an accent.

5. Baste or pin the front and the backing square with right sides facing. Sew a small pillow, leaving one side open a couple of inches so it can be turned right side out. (Tip: Add border lace when sewing the two pieces together, or hand-sew it later.) Clip the corners, turn, stuff, hand-sew the opening. Tip: Add lace border during this step.

6. Sew on any additional lace embellishments (gathered pieces, rosettes, leaves, border lace trim, etc.)

  • Visit The Queen’s Ink to find ribbons, trims, charms and more
  • Hankies
  • Matching and/or contrasting fabric
  • Sewing thread
  • Seed beads, pearls, lace, trims, and other embellishments
  • Fiberfill

Monday, July 31, 2017

You’ve Got Character(s)! By Judi Kauffman for The Queen’s Ink

Get ready to get silly! This project is all about drawing with rubber stamps. The recipe is as easy as pie. Easier, actually. There are only five ingredients: RubberMoon’s Stampstracts 2 stamp set by Kae Pea, cardstock, black ink, markers, and assorted embellishments.

1. Get out the Stampstracts 2 stamp set and assorted acrylic blocks for temporarily mounting them. Using marker-compatible black ink, practice stamping wonky, whimsical animals and characters on cheap, lightweight paper. Don’t worry about masking, don’t aim for perfection. Let the images overlap while you invent ways to create faces, arms, legs, wings, feet, hats, wings and more. In other words, ‘draw’ with the stamps. The photo above shows my six favorites and these samples do include some masking, but you won’t need masking till step 3.
 2. Once you’re pleased with several of the characters, practice adding hand-drawn elements. This step is shown in RED within the samples in the gallery; I drew with a fat marker so the additions are easy to see. When you do this step, however, use a pencil so you can erase and revise. At this point, you’re still practicing.

3. Now it’s time for the ‘real thing’. Stamp directly onto folded note cards or cardstock rectangles, masking as needed. Instead of using a pencil for the additional line work, use a fine nib black marker. (Samples shown are A2 size. Use larger size cards for bigger and taller animals and characters or if you want more than one per card.)

4. Add color with markers or any other coloring media of choice.

5. Embellish with metallic braid, tickets, mini alphabet stickers, mini pencils made from matchsticks or other collage elements.



  • Stampstracts2 (RubberMoon)
  • Black ink
  • Acrylic blocks
  • Cardstock in white, off-white or ivory
  • Pigma Micron 01 in black (Sakura)
  • Gelly Roll Medium in white (Sakura)
  • Markers in assorted colors
  • Metallic braid
  • Assorted embellishments

Monday, July 24, 2017

I’m with The Band By Judi Kauffman for The Queen’s Ink

“I’m with the band!” It was 1965, and oh, how I wanted to be able to say those words…

A guy would come up to a girl and ask her to dance. She’d look up at him with eye liner-laden lids, brushing away her teased bouffant hairdo, and say, “No, thank you, I can’t…I’m with the band.” Those were the dates of the drummer, singer and guitarist. Alas, I was never one of those girls. I just got to have crushes on Otis and Ricky and Richie and Irv from afar.

Why am I taking a public trip down memory lane? Well, it seemed like it might be more eye catching than just saying, “Today we’re going to make napkin rings.” Plus, it’s a shared memory for those of us of a certain age, and some ancient history for the youngest among us. Yes. We did wear our hair like that. And yes, we did have mad crushes on musicians, something that exists to this very day. (Bruno Mars, if only I were twenty!)

Oh well. Here goes:

Today we’re going to make napkin rings – fabric bands embellished with ribbons, fibers, and tassels.

It’s an easy project, a lot of fun, and there are endless options. For example:

You can vary the dimensions for both the fabric and the interfacing to suit your taste. Napkin rings can be much more delicate. They can also be much wider and larger in diameter to accommodate kitchen towels for picnics and lobster fests. They can also be adjustable, tied at the front like a belt, rather than permanently sized.

1. For each napkin ring, cut a strip of fabric measuring 4 or 5 inches wide and 9 inches long and a piece of stiff interfacing measuring 2 or 3 inches wide and 8 inches long.

2. Back the fabric with fusible interfacing or use fabric glue to adhere it to the interfacing or hand-stitch. 3. Turn under all raw edges, completely covering the interfacing on both the outside of the ring and on the back. (It should look as tidy and finished on the inside as on the exterior.) Overlap the ends and sew or glue into a ring.

4. Flatten the ring, or allow it to remain rounded.

5. Embellish the ring with ribbon in varying widths and assorted fibers. Knot at the front, or overlap and stitch or glue at the back. If adding a tassel, turn the hanging loop at the top into a two-loop bow before sewing or gluing the tassel to the napkin ring.

Think outside the box: Instead of a tassel, scour the yard sales and add a sparkly brooch, find or make a polymer or air dry clay medallion, tie on a jumbo bead or some charms. Pin on a removable element like a political button or a photo in a mini frame.

Stamp or stencil the fabric!

Make napkin rings for holidays and special occasions. They’re also fun for everyday dining, taking humble paper napkins to a new level. (I don’t know why, but kids seem to behave better when they’ve started a meal by taking a napkin out of a ring…)

Buy fabric to match or in coordinating patterns and colors; hem square napkins to go the rings.

A set of napkin rings makes an excellent bridal shower, baby shower, or anniversary gift, especially if you tuck in a coupon redeemable for a home-cooked meal!

Rings can be one-of-a-kind rather than a matching set.

Napkin rings make great party favors – send one home with each guest.

  • Fabric
  • Stiff interfacing
  • Ribbon
  • Assorted fibers
  • Tassels or other embellishments
  • Fabric glue
  • Sewing thread