Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Let Me Count the Ways by Judi Kauffman for The Queen’s Ink

Last time I was at The Queen’s Ink I found two Kaisercraft embossing folders I’d never seen before – Numbers and Tiles. The timing was perfect. I’d just agreed to a mixed media numbers-theme card swap with a friend in Ohio. The new folder was put to use the morning after I bought it!

I embossed several pieces of Shimmer Sheetz as the starting point. (I think Shimmer Sheetz and embossing folders are the perfect combo!) Then I grabbed the rest of the items on the supply list and before I knew it I had two cards, a card box, and an ATC. Now all I have to do is decide which one to send to my friend for the swap.
I’m not very good at math, but I love everything about numbers, especially the shapes. And they are at work for us, 24/7, telling us what time it is, what day it is, how much is left in our checkbook, the year we graduated, how old we are, and so much more.

Though there were no parameters in our swap other than to make it mixed media and use numbers, I decided to focus on the ‘2’ to represent two friends. I also hid the current year at the corners of a square on the card with the dragonfly and the year appears on the ATC; the numbers 1 to 12 dance through the three projects (see if you can find them…), and I incorporated the year I finished college as well.

A Challenge for Each of You

Using my projects as inspiration, create your own number-theme project – a card, Artist Trading Card, canvas, journal or planner page, rotary file card…You choose!

Incorporate some or all of the items on the supply list.

Design Strategies and General Instructions

1. Pick a color palette and gather supplies in that palette.

2. Emboss Shimmer Sheetz with number-theme folders. Alter with alcohol inks (or not). Lightly sand to tone down the sparkle (or not). Cut into larger pieces to use as background layers, 2.5” x 3.5” for full ATC fronts, and smaller collage pieces.

3. Paint some oatmeal tan cardstock with strokes of black gesso and sponge over some sequin waste to add texture (or use a stencil instead). Cut into pieces to use for the card base (side-fold or flat).

4. Hand- or die-cut a playing card box. Emboss with the numbers folder. Ink the edges with dye ink. Staple and glue the mixed media collage elements to the front of the box BEFORE constructing it. (The embossed White Iridescent Shimmer Sheetz ruler strip was stapled in place prior to folding and assembling the box - it doesn't wrap all the way to the back, just the front and sides.)

5. Adhere embossed Shimmer Sheetz to a Stampbord ATC. Ink the edges in a color that coordinates with the alcohol inks that were used to alter the embossed Shimmer Sheetz. Use number stickers to add a date at the top left. Using black waxed linen cord, tie on a piece of partially-gessoed and lightly sanded sequin waste (or add other collage elements of choice). Optional: Tuck an ATC (or several of them) into the card box.

6. For the cards: Cut pieces of embossed and alcohol ink-altered Shimmer Sheetz into a series of rectangles. Combine with solid color cardstock, number stickers in one or more sizes, a large embossed and fussy cut number, partially-gessoed and lightly sanded sequin waste, and some washi tape. Use double-sided adhesive tape, foam dots, or staples to hold the collage elements in place. Optional: Perch a die-cut Shimmer Sheetz dragonfly (shown, or a butterfly) on the large number. The photos below show one of the cards before and after a final layer of spray mist and blotted-on paint was added.

7. Things to notice:
*There are numbers on top of numbers, small, medium and large to add contrast and variety.
*Some of the number stickers were originally gold vinyl, but I altered them with alcohol inks to tone down the shine for a subtle effect. The negative pieces (leftovers) also appear here and there. 

8. Beginners – here are some pointers especially for you:
*Mixing things up like this is the equivalent of using several patterned papers in a project. Don’t be afraid to mix things up!
*Trust your eye. In addition to the fun of choosing what to use and where to put all of the elements, remember that the viewer will enjoy having a lot of things to see and discover.

  • Shimmer Sheetz in White, Black, and Purple Iridescent or color(s) of choice
  • Alcohol inks in assorted colors
  • Ink applicator tool
  • Sanding block (optional: To tone down Shimmer Sheetz)
  • Number-theme embossing folders, stamps, stickers
  • Sequin waste or stencils
  • Number theme dies (optional: Not shown)
  • Additional dies (shown: Card box, dragonfly)
  • Stampbord ATC (Ampersand Art Supply)
  • Cardstock, patterned papers, hand-painted papers
  • Black gesso and/or acrylic paints
  • Dye-based inks
  • Spray mists in assorted colors
  • Stapler, staples
  • Cord
  • Washi tape
    (Reminder: If you are using wafer thin dies to cut a dragonfly or numbers, a metal adaptor plate or Big Shot with Precision Base Plate are required for die cutting Shimmer Sheetz, but with Bigz or other standard dies this is not necessary – Review Els van de Burgt’s YouTube tutorial if you are new to this technique.)

1 comment:

  1. How fun! I couldn't think of a way to use numbers only for a project, but these are great!