Archive | Sabrina Friel

Art Neko designer and artist

Samurai Cartoon Tiger on the Latch

Hello everyone – it’s Sabrina here this Friday, with a fun latch card using the Samurai Cartoon Tiger set, which includes the little medallion I used for the “latch” and samurai kanji.  The latch card is a fun fold – you can find a tutorial on Splitcoaststampers HERE.

Samurai Cartoon Tiger latch card

 

I started by cutting and scoring my base using kraft card. Then I stamped that irresistible tiger on white card, and coloured him with Polychromos pencils. My brother-in-law teaches Tai Chi and Aikido, and while they are not as warrior-like as the samurai tradition, I’m looking forward to making him a couple of cards using this sweet Samurai Cartoon Tiger.

I also stamped the “Speak softly and carry a tiger” sentiment on white card to use inside, and die-cut it using a Spellbinders label die.I cut the label from black card to create a matting layer, trimming out the stamped sentiment to fit. Last of all I stamped the Samurai medallion on black card with some Encore Gold ink and embossed it with gold embossing powder. I punched it out with a circle punch and layered it onto a slightly larger circle of gold. I layered the image panel onto black and gold to match the medallion.

Samurai Cartoon Tiger and medallion stamps from Art Neko used to create a latch card

 

Inside, I used some tiger pattern cardstock  – a perfect pairing with this and the other more realistic tiger stamps available from Art Neko. I also used a narrow strip of it to decorate the edge of the card beyond the scored lines, which serve to let you latch and unlatch the card without having to bend it; they just add a little flexibility to the back.

Samurai Cartoon Tiger stamp from Art Neko used to create a latch card

 

I hope you like the card – I certainly really enjoyed making it – and thinking about the meaning of the inside sentiment. The best I could find out, it appears to be a variant of a saying attributed to Theodore Roosevelt – speak softly and carry a big stick.

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Stylized Geisha Pear with a Faux Leather Background

Happy Friday, everybody; it’s Sabrina here today with a card made using the beautiful Stylized Geisha Pear image from Art Neko. This image features two geishas and a large fan set in a pear, with a filling of calligraphy.

Stylized Geisha Pear - image from Art Neko with two geishas and a fan in a pear shape

Isn’t it lovely? I stamped mine with Versamark Onyx Black on watercolour paper, and then coloured it with Inktense pencils. After cutting out the rectangular shape, I sponged the edges with distress inks, and then I masked the pear image off and spattered the background with some gold Twinkling H2Os.

I thought a vintage look background would suit this, so I created a faux leather background using masking tape.

To do this, you start with a piece of card the desired size, then you simply tear small pieces of masking tape and stick them down till the whole piece is covered. Smaller pieces look better. When you have done this, you simply sponge or pounce colour onto it till you get the look you like. The torn edges will be darker than the rest. I used Tea Dye and Vintage Photo distress inks, but this looks good in all sorts of colours.

Faux leather - stage one

 

Faux leather - stage 2

 

Faux leather - stage 3

 

After adding colour, sprinkle clear embossing powder over it and heat it – as the surface is rough and a little tacky you shouldn’t need to use any Versamark. You get a lovely slightly glossy finish with a great vintage look – and I’ve always thought this type of faux leather works well with oriental style images.

Faux leather - finished

I discovered last night that not all masking tapes are created equal! The first one I tried felt very tacky, and in fact when I heated it up at the embossing stage it curled off the paper – shock!!  So, I had to go downstairs and hunt out some other tape, and second time round it worked perfectly. In fact, having done this I decided I wanted to take it up a notch, so I embossed mine with a vine-design and then added some copper gilding wax, buffing it in.  I edged all the panels with a black Sharpie – including the Ginkgo leaf panel, which was cut from this lovely collage sheet. I think they are such beautiful leaves. There must be a tree near work, because a few times over the years I find a ginkgo leaf lying on the path as I walk up the hill – but it’s a rare treat and I’ve never been able to spot the tree.

To finish the card, I popped the main image panel up on foam tape and added some black half-pearls. Here’s the finished Stylized Geisha Pear card.

Stylized Geisha Pear image on a faux leather background

 

Thanks for visiting the blog this week – make sure to stop by again and see what new delights the team have been creating to share next week.

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Decorated slide mailer with microscope slide ornament

It’s Sabrina here today – with a decorated slide mailer and microscope slide ornament. A while back when I shared my microscope slide ornament I mentioned that I had started to decorate a mailer, until I realised that my silver half-pearl meant that the ornament would no longer fit in it. So here today we have the finished slider mailer and a new slide ornament which will fit inside.

decorated slide mailer and microscope slide ornament

 

The slide mailers come as plain cardboard. I started out by giving mine two coats of gesso, both inside and out. Then I painted the inside with white acrylic paint, and the back and all the edges with pink acrylic. I left the front plain, because I knew I was going to cover that with some pretty origami paper from the selection available from Art Neko.

To finish decorating the front, I added a torn scrap of blue card for water, some long grass die-cut from the last scrap of a gel print somebody gifted me, a stately heron (with an eye drawn on, and a little colour on his beak) (Impression Obsession die), and some little gold microbeads to ground the bird. Here is the front of the mailer when I had finished with it.

Decorated slide mailer and microscope slide

 

For the microscope slide, I used the collage sheet of 9 Japanese Kimono Fabrics.  First of all I cut out the purple one, which made me think of bamboos. I spread a thin coat of Glossy Accents (other clear glues like Diamond Glaze or Ranger’s Multi Medium in either gloss or matte would work perfectly too) over the front of the paper and then stuck the slide onto it – so the paper is lining the back of the slide. When the Glossy Accents was dry, I trimmed the paper so it was the same size as the slide. To decorate the front of the glass, I stamped the Bamboo and Kanji bookmark on thin white card using Versafine Olympia Green ink. and trimmed a long stem out to use on the front of the slide. I buffed it lightly with some luster rub (mine is from Craft-T, and I love the finish it adds) and stuck it to the front. Then I decided to cut out another little spray of leaves, and used a different colour of rub before adding it to the slide too. And then I added another heron to match the one on the front.

Microscope slide decorated with papers from Art Neko

 

For the back, I started by adding a small loop of silver embroidery floss, attaching it with tape. Then I used another kimono design from the collage sheet, sticking it and then trimming it to size when the glue was dry.

To finish off the edges, I simply used Liquid Pearls in Platinum, drawing a fine line along each edge and letting it dry thoroughly.

Here you can see the back, and also a close-up shot. I love the way the collage sheet is behind the glass with the bamboo at the front, giving a lovely feeling of depth.

Altered microscope slide using papers from Art Neko                                                                                                         Altered Microscope slide

I hope you’ve enjoyed this decorated slide mailer and microscope slide ornament project  – it was certainly great fun to make. Thanks for visiting the blog this month – can you believe that it’s already June tomorrow?

 

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Birthday Girl Gift Tag

Happy Friday, everybody; it’s Sabrina here today with a Birthday Girl Gift Tag to dress up a small gift. I love adding tags like this to birthday and Christmas gifts.

 

Gift tag using fancy papers and stamps from Art Neko

This actually started out as a project with no stamps, simply using the lovely papers from Art Neko, but then I decided to stamp a repeated sentiment across my tag and to add a little wrapped gift, too.

Large shipping tags are available from B-Muse.com (now owned by Art Neko), you will find them on THIS page, about four lines from the top. I used a dress-form on my tag because I was given a gift of a Tim Holtz die a couple of years ago – but a perfect alternative would be the Torso Tags from B-Muse.com – they are on the same page I have just linked, but right down at the end of the page.

I actually coloured the tag quite some time ago so I’m afraid I can’t remember exactly what I did, but I know it was distress inks sponged on, then spritzed with a silver shimmer mist and a stencil laid down on it for a few minutes, giving a slight textured look. I put it on a sheet of grid paper to help me stamp the  Happy Birthday sentiment across it in parallel  lines.

My dress form was cut from a cereal box and swiped with distress inks. I cut a scrap of holographic paper to cover the torso, and then set about creating the skirt. For this, I used a small piece of the Gold Stars on a Field of Black polyester fabric paper.  I scored it at 1/2″ intervals using a score-board, and then pleated it – it holds the pleats beautiful. I stuck a  narrow strip of paper on the waistline of the dress-form, and then carefully shaped the skirt onto it. I added a belt cut from another scrap of paper to neaten it up, with a  large gem for a buckle,  and trimmed the hem where necessary to make it even.

To add to the birthday feel, I decided to add a small wrapped gift, and used the Furoshiki Wrapped Gift for this purpose. I stamped it on thin card, cut it out, coloured it with markers and added another gem over the knot in the bow. It needed a little grounding, I thought, so I just added an offcut from my micrcoscope slide ornament! A ribbon to add the tag to a gift finishes off this Birthday Girl Gift Tag.

 

A Birthday Girl Gift Tag using papers and stamps from Art Neko

 

I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing the teams’ creations this week – make sure to come by again soon for more inspiration.

 

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Daisy and Snail birthday card

Hello everyone, it’s Sabrina here this Friday with a Daisy and Snail birthday card. I have plenty of summer birthdays, and with the weather improving here it’s definitely gardening time.

 

Daisy and Snail birthday card, close-up of the pieced dasiy

 

I used the daisy stamp from the Bookmarks and Sentiments plate – as I mentioned before, I trimmed the thank-you sentiment off it to use separately, as I get more use from the daisy on its own. This time I went for some simple paper-piecing, using a scrap of the Pastel Bargello Fans paper from the selection of Japanese papers available from Art Neko. I stamped the flower over two different areas of the paper, so that I could cut the yellow centre separately.  I also stamped the daisy on plain white card, and coloured the grassy foreground and the leaves with pencils.

My Silly Snail was stamped twice on thin white card, using Versafine Onyx Black, and sponged with distress inks to add some colour. The shell was cut out and layered onto the first snail.

After stamping the vertical Happy Birthday  ( I love vertical sentiments, and in this case it really goes well with the tall daisy stem), I tore along one edge. Then I used a stencil and some distress ink and lightly sponged with blue to add a bit of depth. Then I stitched along the other edge – I like to use thread designed for buttonholes or top-stitching, as they are a bit thicker than the regular thread and stand out more. Finally I dry-embossed a strip along the edge of my base card, where it would show under the torn edge, and added my main panel.

 

Daisy and Snail birthday card using stamp from bookmarks and sentiments plate and a Silly Snail

 

I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing what the team members have created to share with us this week. Have a good weekend, and make sure to come by again next week and see what new beauties are on display.

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2 Floral ATCs – Lotus and Lilies

Happy Friday, everyone; today I have 2 floral ATCs to share with you, using images from the Set of 9 Flowered Arist Trading Cards.

 

Lotus blossom ATC using Flowered ATC stamp and papers from Art Neko

I have to admit that it’s a long time since I’ve made trading cards to trade – postage costs and lack of space to display any more than the large collection I have are factors against it, so I will most likely keep these two floral ATCs  on hand to make quick cards with in an emergency, adding a suitable sentiment at the time.  But  if I do decide to get back into trading again, I will be very happy knowing that Art Neko have a great stamp for the back of ATCs, all the fields all ready to fill in including edition/series information and stamps used.

For these two ATCs I used the Lotus blossom and the Asiatic Lilies – both are stamped on white card with black ink and coloured with Polychromos pencils.

For the Lotus, I used a stencil and added little circles in the “sky” area of the background, highlighting some of them with Stickles, and coloured the water area with pencils. The base for this uses a piece of paper from one of the printed collage sheets – I can’t find the identical one in store currently but it was similar to THIS one; not that you can see much of it after I added the gold and silver embossing round the edges. But it picks up on the blue water, and doesn’t the canvase paper it’s printed on give a lovely finish to the embossing too?

 

For the lily, I chose rich oranges to colour it, thinking of the tiger-lilies in Alice in Wonderland. For the base, I added a small strip of one of the Japanese papers on the diagonal, and edged it with a gold pen before embossing. The lily image is added with some thin foam tape for extra dimension.

Two Floral ATCs using stamps from Art Neko's set of 9 Flowered ATCs and papers from the store

 

I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing the team’s creations this week. I thought Chrissy’s jellyfish was truly magnificent! Have a good weekend, and we’ll see you again next week.

 

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Microscope Slide Ornament for Spring

It’s Sabrina here today, and this week I have used the microscope slides available from Art Neko to create a microscope slide ornament to celebrate Spring.  It’s beautiful here with all the white  and pink flowers on the magnolias, cherry blossom and even the hawthorn already coming out in the hedgerows.

 

Microscope slide ornament using one of the bookmarks from the Bookmarks and Sentiments set from Art Neko

 

For this ornament, I used a tutorial available on Splitcoaststampers, you can find it by clicking HERE. I know that many people use metal tape and soldering to finish off ornaments like these, but even had I been able to find any tape, my soldering skills are pretty rusty so I was pleased that this tutorial suggested using strong double-sided tape as an alternative.

 

I started out by colouring one of the bookmarks from the Bookmarks and Sentiments plate. I masked the birds with masking fluid and used dilute acrylic paints to colour the sky, and pencil for the tree branches. After the paint was dry, I removed the masking fluid to leave the birds white, and used more acrylic paints for the blossom. Then I trimmed a portion of the bookmark to match the size of the slide. For the back of the ornament, I used one of the beautiful fabric papers available from Art Neko. I chose the Silver Sakura Blossoms on White because I was going to use silver cording and silver glitter.  I stuck this onto a piece of thin white card so that the silver cording, which is secured between the back and front layers of the ornament, wouldn’t show through.

And then I followed the tutorial instructions to assemble my ornament.  I used a small silver half-pearl to tidy up the join between the two ends of my tape. It looks pretty, but unfortunately this means it will no longer fit into the protective slide mailer which I was starting to decorate. So you will see that as another project shortly!

Microscope slide ornament created using the Bookmarks and sentiments stamp set from Art Neko

 

 

This is what the back  of the microscope slide ornament looks like, with that beautiful paper.

Microscope slide ornament

 

As always, thank you for taking the time to visit the Art Neko blog this week. I hope you’ve been inspired by the creativity the team have shared with us -I know I have. Have a lovely weekend, and we’ll see you again next week.

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Hippity-hop, the moon viewing rabbits come out for Easter

It’s Sabrina here with a Friday post for you, and I am using the Hiroshige moon viewing rabbits stamp from Art Neko to create an Easter card. After all, why can’t the moon be a sun if  it suits us? Spring is meant to be here now and Easter isn’t all that far off, so I thought the rabbits should come out to play. We had some lovely warm weather for a while (and enough sunshine to make the daffodils really glow) but this week we’ve even had some snow (rare in Ireland) and biting winds. Enough to send any self-respecting rabbit back into his burrow to escape from it all!

Hiroshige moon viewing rabbits think it's Easter!

 

I stamped my image on white card with  Versafine black ink, and coloured it with Polychromos pencils, using a Zest-It for blending. After cutting with a circle die, I added some dots of pale yellow Liquid Pearls to create some spring flowers to the meadow – a tasty treat for the rabbits. Then I simply layered the rabbit panel onto a larger blue circle and then onto a die-cut decorative base. To finish off, I  dabbed a little gesso on with my fingers for a soft cloudy sky – no threatening grey with rain on the horizon here.

 

Hiroshige moon viewing rabbits stamp from Art Neko used for an Easter card

 

There are some other lovely rabbit stamps available from Art Neko which would make cute Easter cards – I think these long-eared rabbits are especially sweet. And if you’d like some charms to dress up your Easter creations with, look no further than these little Easter basket charms or the textured Easter egg charms.

 

Thank you so much for coming by the Art Neko blog this week. I hope you’ve enjoyed all the lovely floral Spring creations the team have been sharing with us – check back next week to see some more inspiring ideas.

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Daffodils and Sunshine

It’s Sabrina here today, with some daffodils and sunshine for you, no matter what the real weather is like for you today.

Daffodils in Sunshine - detail of floral ATC stamp from Art Neko featuring daffodils

Some daffodils here were coming up very early here and there because we have had such a mild winter, but now that March is here they’re out all over, a lovely splash of colour on the dullest of grey days and a beautiful glow of light when the sun shines. For my card, I used the daffodil image from the Set of 9 Flowered Artist Trading Cards.  I stamped it on watercolour paper with Versamark Smokey Grey to give a slightly softer look, and coloured it with pencils.

To create a sunny, soft background I used the starch and cling-wrap technique: I sprayed some glossy card with starch, sprinkled some coloured pigments over, laid a piece of cling-wrap over it and moved the pigments round a bit to mix them. Then I left it (wrinkles in the cling-wrap are what add the lovely textured look to this) for about half an hour, removed the wrap and left it to dry thoroughly. Then, I added a marker border around the edge (picking up on the frame of the ATC), and embossed it with a sun-ray embossing folder. The one I used comes from Taylored Expressions but there are several available. I used soft pure pigments, if you use something like Brusho or Colorburst powders for this technique you can get some beautifully vivid backgrounds.

I thought this Gift of Sunshine sentiment was perfect to pair with the golden daffodils. I created a small background piece with a stencil and some acrylic spray, and then stamped the sentiment with black ink. I trimmed it to a tag shape and added a dotted border with a green marker, and then punched a hole and tied some natural raffia through it.

The tag is popped up on foam tape for dimension, and I added a whole lot of sequins for some extra sunny sparkle.

Daffodils in Sunshine - floral atc from Art Neko with sentiment tag

 

Thanks for coming by the Art Neko blog this week! May you have some sunshine – or even better, daffodils and sunshine,  somewhere in your weekend.

 

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Off the cards – notebook and paperweight

It’s Sabrina here today, and I am going off the cards with a notebook and paperweight using  one of the sheets of collage papers from the B-muse.com site, where you can find some great ephemera and embellishments for altering and decorating.

 

Beach pebble bookmark with collaged element

For my paperweight, I used the Vintage Playing Cards Backs sheet, which can be found on THIS page. It includes a couple of round designs (I’d love to see the round cards in real life), and one of those was just perfect to use to decorate the Mexican beach pebble which Annette sent me.  I cut the playing card design out and stuck it to the pebble with some Mod Podge. I used an alcohol-based white pen to add a dotted border all round it (I chose to use an alcohol-based pen because I knew I would be using an acrylic satin varnish to seal it, and I was afraid that with a water-based pen the design might have blurred). I added a few coats of varnish to seal it, and that was my paperweight done.

 

When I am covering notebooks, I tear one page out of the pad, and use that as a template. Laying that on top of a piece of thin card cut to the same size, I mark each of the little punched holes with a pencil, and then punch them with a small circle punch. Then I use a knife blade or scissors and snip diagonally in to the punched hole from the top of the piece of card. Then it’s very easy to slip this over the notebook and stick it down with a good wet glue, using something like a stylus to burnish it down under the spiral binding.

For this notebook I actually used the cover of an old pack of Basic Grey paper. I also used a rectangular playing card back which matched the round one I had used to decorate the pebble. Before sticking the playing card back on, I punched several circles in different sizes from a scrap of one of the beautiful Japanese papers. Because of the high fibre content these papers are hard to punch cleanly (but it means they fold beautifully), so I folded a piece of thin copy paper over it before punching.  I stuck these onto the front of my notebook and added white pen dots to pick up on the detail I’d added to the paperweight. I added a butterfly cut with a Sizzix die, and then I decided that it really needed a sentiment to fill the empty space, so I used one from Whimsical and Kind Sayings, stamping and embossing it with white.

covered notebook and paperweight with collage elements

 

I hope you had a good week and will have a good weekend. Thank you for coming by the Art Neko blog this week.

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