Friday, November 24, 2017

December Daily 2017

Hi there lovelies,

Just a quick share of my December Daily Scrapbook. Still a work in progress, but I love my book and I love the Project Life way of memory keeping. 

Follow the links below and pop on over to the Ivytree Studio website and drop us a line by completing a contact form if you are interested in this kit.

Visit Ivytree Studio to see more of what we are up to
Buy some of our pretty paper here
Connect with the team on our Facebook page here.
Share your Ivytree Studio layouts with us here

Sunday, October 22, 2017

What to do with failed attempts?

Hi there lovelies,

Not everything we create is a success each and every time.

I made this card, but it just didn't work for me. The title was a mess-up. I wanted to chuck it but my sister wanted it, just because I made it.

If I have to analyse why this card didn't work, it must have something to do with how you "feel" when you create something. As creatives, we are closely connected to our work and our feelings. Our feelings can definitely reflect in our work.

My advice to you when you don't "feel" it, just take a break and do something else. Maybe go outside and just enjoy your garden or take a little trip and get some inspiration by taking some photos of your little adventure. Taking a nap or spending time with your besties, can also energise your creativity.

Then go back to your studio, and try again.

What to do with failed attempts?

  1. Keep them. Use them as a learning experience reference of what worked and what didn't. Make notes. 
  2. Keep them and use them as an element in your art journal. I have kept art and later found a use for it. 

Products used: Finesse Collection by Ivytree Studio

'Till next time!

Dressing chipboard ladies and making cards

Hi there lovelies,

From the end of September to February, the birthday season starts in our family. This little card was made for my sister's birthday in October.

I once again used the Finesse collection for this card. I dressed up the Girlie silhouette chipboard and some other chipboard pieces. I used some stamps in my stash to create the plum coloured butterfly wing background layer. I used the same stamp set to dress the girlie after I coloured it with paint and inks, using stamps and embossing powder and setting it with my heat tool.

Products used: Ivytree Studio paper and elements from the Finesse Collection

'Till next time!

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Celebrating baby sisters and single layouts

Hi there lovelies,

Have I told you that I just love my little sister? She is the best person I know. She is loving, caring and always puts the needs of her loved ones first. She has such a serving heart. That is just one aspect of her. She is also a deeply faithful girl of faith. She loves the Lord and everything she does, is to honour Him. She is also an artist and an illustrator and man, is her art amazing. She has a little personal blog you can visit here. 

I also love single layouts way more than double ones. I created this single layout to celebrate her. I used the Finesse Collection I designed for Ivytree Studio. I really enjoyed putting this collection together. This is the first of our collections that expanded into a variety of new products. The collection even has a chipboard set, stencil set and some cute flair buttons. It also sees the edition of our very popular Cute Cuts packs and Pretty Pocket card packs (pre-cut) cards. There is a Simply Pretty colour matched collection that includes some really pretty washi pages and border cuts and a lot of pretty simple patterns that is not theme-specific. 

I also wrote a Gracelilly devotional book in both English and Afrikaans that has its own Cute Cuts kit with it. This was a lot of work all in all but oh so worth it. I really enjoy playing with this collection and using it in all kinds of projects. 

Products used: Paper and elements from Ivytree Studio - Finesse Collection.

'Till next time!

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Trying out albums

Hi there lovelies,

I don't know about you but making my own albums have not been high on my priority list. I would rather just buy an album and put my layouts in them. On the other hand, albums are so expensive these days so I end up having to store my layouts until I can afford an album and page protectors. They can get damaged if you don't store them properly. 

I love Project Life and because I am a cardmaker, I also love making little cards to use in my Project Life layouts. This layout was created using the Seize the Day collection I designed for Ivytree Studio. 

I wanted to do a whole album using this collection and I wanted to try and make a 12"x12" album from scratch. This was my first version and I'll share more about it later. I just wanted to do a quick write-up about what I learned from making my own album. 

First, trying to make a 12"x12" album as your first try is probably not a good idea. It is a large format so if you start with a smaller version, you might find it easier. I like a challenge and I learned so much from it.

Sizing is therefore important to note. Watching a couple of videos on Youtube might also help give you the basic ideas and perhaps you may find some templates or advice on sizing it out. 

Just start. Select your paper, chipboard and adhesives and just begin. 

Cut your spine and front and back covers and connect them using some broad masking tape. Start covering it with the base layer of pattern paper. Because this was just a test version, I used large A2 sheets of white cardstock so I had enough room to cover wide surfaces. 

Then you need a place to add pages. You will be adding a gusset to your inner spine. Click on the link here to see some ideas on Pinterest. 

Depending on how thick your layouts are, this will determine how many pages you can add to your album. 

You can create pages and then adhere them to your album. Or create pages inside your album as you go. 

What I have found through trying out making my own albums and from the research I've done, is that it can be really rewarding making an album from scratch and then filling them. 

I plan to make more albums in future. It is really not that difficult and using the same paper as you used in your layouts, can turn out to be a really fun way to start and finish scrapbook projects. 

You can do a year-in-review album or make an album for the year to come and then fill it out as you go. You can celebrate one particular event and make a full album on it all with the same paper. 

So, hope this post gets you thinking and helps you take the leap into album making. 

 Products used: Seize the Day collection from Ivytree Studio.

'Till next time!

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Mixed Media Cardmaking

Hi there lovelies,

When it comes to cardmaking, I like to play around and use a variety of techniques.

Have you tried making these:

  1. Digistamp cards - using images or drawings or digital stamps as a focal point on your cards. 
  2. Die cut cards - using dies to cut elements and use as a focal point on your cards.
  3. Mixed Media Cards - using a variety of art product and techniques on your cards.
  4. Layered Cards - using a variety of elements and layering on your cards
  5. Box cards - exploding box cards where you open the box and all the layered elements are revealed.
Can you think off more types of cards? Leave a comment to this post. 

Here is an example of a card I worked on recently. I don't have the final image availalbe but I thought to share the close-ups to show you the results of mixing mediums. 

Products used:
Paper from my stash and white cardstock
A variety of inks including my favourite Vegas Gold All Purpose Ink
Gold acrylic paint from our local brand Dala

Flower elements cut with Silhouette Cameo

Stitching pattern: Basic flower design

'Till next time!

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Friends for Life Card published in Scrap Affairs

Hi there lovelies,

I created this card just for fun. I wanted to experiment with stitching designs I like. This design was a free share I found on Pinterest. Loved it.

I think I will start playing around with my own designs from now on.

Products used:
Ivytree Studio paper: I mixed collections: Friendship collection, Wild&Free collection, Seize the Day collection.

Scrap Affairs Magazine

'Till next time!

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Celebrate Family time Double Layout and more stitching

Hi there lovelies,

Just a quick share on a double layout I just completed. Still, need to add my photos, but I love how it turned out.

Products used:
Ivytree Studio paper: Hadeda Garden collection

Monday, July 31, 2017

Birthday Card and more stitching

Hi there lovelies,

Sharing another one of my handmade cards. 
I love paper stitching and added some stitching to this project too. 

This card was for a birthday. "Lekker Verjaar" is translated into "Happy Birthday". 

Product used:
Ivytree Studio Paper: Haded Garden Collection

'Till next time

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Smile Card and paper stitching

Hi there lovelies,

Today I am sharing a little handmade card with you. 

Products used:
Ivytree Studio paper: Happy Day collection

'Till next time!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Patchwork Rainbow card and Happy Day single layout

Hi there lovelies,

For those of you who are new to my blog, this is my personal blog where I share my art and paper creations. I sometimes also write a bit about things that concern artists in general. You may want to browse through my previous posts to learn more. 

A little background:

I am also co-owner, managing director and co-designer at Ivytree Studio. 

I used to be a teacher and had a 20-year career in education that took me all over the world. In 2008 I made a choice to pursue my dreams and got married to the man of my prayers (not dreams as prayer brings you closer to the man of your dreams once you trust God for Him and I did), he in return took me on a couple of adventures to the Middle East stretching from Oman, the UAE, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia. I turned my focus more towards entrepreneurship and a less controlled and structured life in 2008...the dream of every creative soul. I started blogging and writing. 

I have always been creative in my nature, always living it out in all I did from organizing Art Festivals, designing school newspapers from being the editor, photographer, graphic designer to handling production and distribution, also logo development, organizing events, being involved in musicals and small stage productions, creating all kinds of marketing materials for various clients over the years to making cards, wedding invitations and decor,  flower arranging, food, event planning, training students to plan events, running stalls at craft markets but in the end I needed to create just for the fact that it made me happy. I ventured to research various mediums of art to find that one thing that was "me"...something I could make my own and relate to. I found mixed media and have always had a fascination with portraits, so I started to work at it and I am still growing in this artform but love it. I participated in my first group exhibition in 2014 and hope to do so again sometime soon. More recently as graphic design is also a passion because of the design process that comes naturally to me, Ivytree Studio took a new direction into paper design as I wanted to use my own paper in my art so it reflected more of me and my fellow artist-sister Surita's thumbprint. Thus was born Ivytree Elements, our pretty paper brand. We are now one year into this journey and have 6 collections behind us and more to come. We love what we do and we know that God is leading us to higher and higher heights in the road He has taken us on.  We follow hard after Him. 

Finally, I am also very much a memory keeper at heart and have scrapbooked in one form or another since forever...I've had just taken it to another level in the last decade since a friend from Oman introduced me to her way of doing it and I ventured to once again research it properly and learn more. So you see, I fit into this "creative community" because of my very nature. From card making, sewing, cooking, memory keeping, designing to just painting on a canvas, the art is in you and part of you and no matter what others say about who you are or what you do or what they think, you will create because it is not a is a way of breathing. It is also a way of bringing honour to the One who placed a little part of Himself in us all...creating us in His image. So, also in my walk with God and His Word, I have lived out my creativity over time and recently started to create content for Believers under the branding of GraceLilly.  Still very new, but you can find out more about it here

I hope this gives you a little more info on who I am and why I do what I do. 

So, without further delay, here is another little card I would like to share with you today. 

I made this for a blog hop I am taking part in. For more details, visit the Ivytree Studio blog here. 

Patchwork Rainbow Card

Step by step Tutorial:

What you will need:

  • White cardstock 240gsm in weight
  • The Happy Day paper collection from Ivytree Studio #173
  • Metal ruler, pencil, cutting matt (paper trimmer if you have one - I didn't use mine in this project, but you might find it handy)
  • Scissors and fussy cut scissors
  • Various adhesives
  • Variety Stencils to create the paper strips with and any distress ink of your choice in any colour you like (I used Cotton Candy from Artistry  Ink - KCraft)
  • Vegas gold All purpose Ink and a thin paint brush to make fine ink splashes with. 
  • Piercing tool and a craft sheet (you get fancy paper stitching tools, but I use my craft sheet, fold it in two and I have a spongy base to place my paper and stitching guides on to pierce through); Needle and thread (any colour you like - normal thread will do. I used embroidery thread in white)
  • Gold  Gliter Washi tape (Cotton Candi) - any other washi of your choice will also be fine to use
  • Embellishments: paper flowers (2); organza ribbon; a couple diamante and mini flower "diamante" 
  • At the last moment, I added a little pretty birdy just for fun that I bought at my local PNA. They come in packs of 5 or 6. The birdy always features in our Ivytree Studio logo and branding, so wanted to add it to my card. 
  • Circle cutter

Card size when folded: 162mm x 152mm
Folded open: 152mm x 2 by 162mm

First I used some offcuts left over from my last scrapbook layout. This was the layout:

Creating the strips: I created strips of patterns with my LilyK stencils and pink distress ink. I used a variety of patterns I liked from dots, stripes, textures to florals. I then combined it with some washi strips from the latest Ivytree Studio collection, called "Happy Day" (view the collection here)

I stuck the off-cut strips down on our white 240gsm cardstock with a tape runner.  I  ran out of tape half way but a basic glue stick did the trick to finish the job.  A girl has to have a backup plan just in case, right.  I just love this is my go-to for everything. I use it mostly as a base for whatever I am doing. It is nice and sturdy and I even use it in my Silhouette Cameo cutting machine. This is what I ended up with:

I trimmed it down so I was just left with 7 strips.

STEP 2: Cutting the "bows" of the rainbow

I used my circle cutter on the back (remember we just stuck down the strips on the other side of this) but you can use any circle template or circle shapes you can find. Keep it simple and don't overthink it. You just need a couple of "bows" for your rainbow. You can even draw it by hand if you have a steady hand. :) As the cardstock is now much thicker than 240gsm which is already quite sturdy, I did not force my circle cutter to cut through. I just ensured that I had a deep enough cut so I could follow through with my craft knife or scissors. Ended up using my scissors. 

 Now use a 277mm (length) by 162mm (width) piece of white cardstock (240gsm) for the base of your card. Fold the cardstock at 125mm (length). The back of the card is now 152mm in length and the front part is only 125mm in length.  

Now you can position your "bows" of your rainbow randomly like in the image below. Don't mind the edges not being even or going all the way to the side too much as you will be covering it with flowers. I made sure my strips did not line up so it ends up looking like a patchwork (totally on purpose)

Remember to cut another piece of white cardstock for the inside of the card: 152mmx162mm. This piece you will only use to cover the inside of your card at the end, once you have completed your stitching.

STEP 3: Now we stitch

I used a paper piercing tool and added stitching holes about 5mm apart. I used my eye as a guide. (Years of practice I guess, but it wasn't that hard...remember it doesn't have to be perfect, just fun)

Make sure you add holes above and under each "bow" of the rainbow. 

I used embroidery thread but I split one strand into 3. It has 6 strands so I used two strands at a time. It is a good quality thread but you can use normal thread too. Just don't use one strand as it will be too thin. Use two strands at least depending on the needle you use and the effect you want.  I like the crispness of the white against white so I used white thread but you can use any colour thread you want. I wanted my rainbow to stand out and I didn't want the stitching to be too much. 

This is what I ended up with. I then proceeded to place invisible tape (you can use washi tape too) at the back of my stitching to secure all the ends:

Close up of the stitching: 

Before you continue, stick down your 152mmx162mm backing to the inside of the card to hide the stitching. 

Just a quick note on the type of stitch I used in my paper stitching on this card:

 I used what is called the "Backstitch" and here is what it is: 

 I hope that if you have wanted to try your hand at paper stitching, that you give this one a go. Put your needle in from the back into the first hole, back down through the next one, back up from the back again into the next one and then back down again into the previous one and if you continue like this you will have a continues or "back stitch" like your sewing machine would give you. 

Other types of stitches:
Some of these you will be able to use on paper and some you won't.  Colour outside the lines and try them all out on paper, why don't ya! That is how you discover great things! 

STEP 4: Fussy cut to your heart's content
I used the Joy card from the English Pretty Pocket Cards/Hearts page, item 173/6 from the Happy Day collection.  I used my fussy cut scissors to cut away the background so I was only left with the sentiment and the florals. 

I also used item 173/4 Flower Accents/Brown Polkadots page and cut a variety of flowers I wanted to use from this page. 
Finally, I used a heart cut from item 173/10 Elements/Ivytree page

I then used these elements to finish the sides of my rainbow. You have to feel your way through and balance it out for yourself. There is no rhyme or reason to where you want to place it. You have to be happy with the end result. 

STEP 5: Trim the bottom and embellish
I used a Cotton Candy gold glitter washi tape (we stock Cotton Candi washi in our store here) on the bottom of my card and just underneath I used a pink washi strip from the Happy Day collection that says "Happy day" but you can use any of the washi strips from this collection. 

Finally, I embellished my card using the following goodies:
Two mini white paper roses
A pink organza ribbon turned into a bow
5 small mini flower embellishments
3 small gold diamante
One little painted birdy (from PNA)
Vegas gold all-purpose ink splashed randomly and softly over the top part of the card with a thin paintbrush. 

  • Pentel tape runner from PNA (loved it but ran out too quickly and had to use my glue stick)
  • Heritage Scrapbook Glue (= my go-to glue for many many years. I know everybody in the crafting community is advised by all the retailers to use Tombo...they like to push a brand... and I also do use it from time to time, but I don't like the stickiness on my hands. The Heritage glue is different but not as tacky and therefore I can get rid of it quickly once it gets on my hands. I can finish what I'm doing without feeling like everything I touch is sticking to my's a tactile thing and personal preference)
  • Glue gun to stick down the ribbon and two paper roses. Just lasts longer and gives it a bit of a lift which gives it dimension. 
  • Finally, I used one double-sided square for the heart to make it look like it is floating on the rainbow, like love hanging in the sky. 

The mini flower and diamante embellishments where placed top left, bottom left and middle right to get your eye to flow through out the whole card.  (Rule of 3's) 

And that's it, friends. A very easy but colourful card to make.

If you haven't done so yet, please follow my blog in the sidebar (remember you can only view the sidebar using your PC), then comment to this post that you did. Go back to the Ivytree Studio post here to follow the blog hop this post forms part of. 

Thanks for popping in! 

Visit Ivytree Studio to see more of what we are up to
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