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Welcome

Welcome! Artfully Musing is a blog dedicated to sharing art and the techniques and products used. I'll be showcasing collage, altered and mixed media art as well as miniature. I hope you'll check back often and are inspired. Thanks for visiting! Laura

Monday, July 30, 2012

The Magician Tarot Card Designed For Alpha Stamps

This is the third of four tarot cards I designed as an inspiration piece for the Alpha Stamps "Gypsy Fortune Teller Swap”.  The base of the card is made from a chipboard pennant which measures 4” x 6”.  The magic stick is made from a wooden skewer.
On the back, I added the explanation for the card. 

Alpha Stamps Products Used in This Piece




Saturday, July 28, 2012

Christmas in July Bookshelf and Mini Albums - Designed for Alpha Stamps

Let’s take a short break from gypsies with “Christmas in July”!  It’s never too soon to start thinking about your Christmas projects.  Here’s a project that could be used as a festive piece of art to display during the season or as a gift for a loved one.  I’ve decorated the sample for Christmas, but it could be used for any theme.  The Mini Album Bookshelf with books is made from an easy to assemble Masonite kit.  The assembled bookshelf is approximately 9 1/4 “ high (without the embellishments you see in the sample above).

The bookshelf holds several mini albums depending on the thickness of each album.  The albums are also made of Masonite and come in packages of 3 albums.
Below are some tips on assembling and decorating the bookshelf and mini albums and a supply list.
Decorating and Assembling the Bookshelf
  • Before I started decorating the bookshelf I figured out how it was assembled.  Familiarizing yourself with the assembly helps when deciding where you want different pattern paper to go and to make sure it’s on the side you want and going in the direction you want.
  • You’ll also want to do as much decorating as you can before assembling the bookshelf, as it is much harder to decorate once the piece is assembled.  I painted, added all of the paper and borders before assembly.
  • I started by painting what will be the visible edges of the bookshelf red and the pages of the mini albums green.
  • Next, I glued paper on all of the visible surfaces of the bookshelf.  I used an X-acto knife and sandpaper to trim the paper from the edges.
  • If you use paper to cover the surfaces you will need to reopen the holes used to assemble the bookshelf.  Reopen the holes on the inside of the pieces not the outside so that the outside paper hides the construction.
  • To give the piece a more vintage look and to cover the white edge of the paper I used Ranger Distress Ink (Brown Corduroy) on the edges of the paper.
  • I added Visions of Christmas Foiled Die-Cut Cardstock Borders to the outside and inside of the pieces.  I love these borders.  Some of the patterns can be used for non-Christmas projects.
  • I glued the bookshelf pieces together. 
  • For feet I bent Brass Filigree Corners and attached them to the bookshelf using E-6000 glue.  You need to use a strong glue to support the weight of the bookshelf.  I also used tiny brass nails to add extra support to the feet.
  • Next, I added collage sheet images and other decorative embellishments to the outside of the bookshelf and trimmed the edges with Dresden borders.
  • To create the wreath at the top, I cut the center out of a plastic lid so just the edge remained.  I then wrapped the edge with gold, red and silver tinsel. And of course added lots of embellishments.  I glued the wreath to the bookshelf with E-6000 glue.

Decorating and Assembling the Books
The mini album pages come in a sheet.  I broke the sheets apart, clipped the tabs off with a pair of sturdy scissors and then used sandpaper to file away the excess.
  • There are different ways you can assemble the album pages.  You could use paper to create an accordion fold album or you could glue the pages to a spine (which is what I did).
  • If you are going to glue the pages to a spine you need to decorate the pages first and stick to flat embellishments (paint, paper, rub-ons stamping etc.).  Whatever you add will create bulk.  If you attach the spine before decorating the pages the book won’t close.
  • I covered each page back and front with decorative paper.  I inked and embellished the inside pages.
  • I cut a piece of paper to act as the spine.
  • I glued the front page to the spine paper. 
  • Next, I glued just the edge of the two inside pages to the spine.  I used E-6000 glue as you need to have a strong bond between the Masonite pages and the paper spine so that when you open the book the pages won’t separate from the spine.  Alternatively you could use fabric tape (bookbinding tape) as a spine.
  • I glued the back page to the spine paper.
  • Lastly, I decorated the covers of the albums and the spines.
Book Covers
Spines
Inside Pages
Alpha Stamps entire line of Christmas collage sheets are on sale plus all of the Christmas paper.  This includes the collage sheets and papers I used in this project.  Some of the embellishments I used are also on sale.
Alpha Stamps Products Used in This Piece
Brass Filigree Corners – Bookshelf Feet
Christmas Filigree Set – Wreath / Bookshelf
Cameo Frames: Ovals – Mini Album
Collage Sheets

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Pretty Potions and Poisons Apothecary Event September 2012

It's time to wave your wands (or glue sticks) and start building your own potions and poisons apothecary.  Whether your style is cute, pretty, spooky, gothic, creepy and crawly; all takes on Halloween are welcome here!  This event is all about having fun with Halloween and creating something that you will enjoy displaying during this spooktacular season.  So turn on your favorite Halloween tunes and get your witchy grove on.

I’m also excited to announce, that as part of this event I’ve created a series of apothecary collage sheets for purchase
NOTE
As of 1/13/18 Create for Less online store is carrying a 7 1/2" x 5" x 3" box that would work perfectly for this project.  You would need to purchase 4.  if you want the link to the product, email me using the "Email Me" button in the right side column of my blog or post a comment on the YouTube video.
ASSEMBLING and DECORATING THE CABINET
This haunted journey starts with viewing the tutorial below which covers assembling and decorating an apothecary cabinet.  Once you finish the first video you'll want to continue on to the others which cover altering bottles and tins, making books, decorating coffins and cauldrons.  
Video Tutorial #1– Assembling and Decorating the Apothecary Cabinet
FREE IMAGES
 Feel free to download the images below and use them in your art.
The haunted journey continues with viewing the second tutorial in the series which covers altering bottles and tins. 
  Video Tutorial #2– Altering Bottles and Tins
I’ve broken this tutorial into two pieces so be sure to watch them both.
Part One of Two
Part Two of Two
FREE IMAGES
 Feel free to download the images below and use them in your art.

Witches Hat Template


The haunted journey continues with viewing the third tutorial in the series which covers creating books, decorating cauldrons and coffins.  You don’t need to be experienced in bookbinding to make the simple and fun books I’ll be demonstrating. 
Video Tutorial #3– Books, Coffins, and Cauldrons

Monday, July 23, 2012

The Moon Tarot Card Designed For Alpha Stamps


This is the second of four tarot cards I designed as an inspiration piece for the Alpha Stamps Gypsy Fortune Teller Swap”.  The base of the card is made from a chipboard pennant which measures 4” x 6”.
The moon at the top is covered with various rhinestones and pearls.
On the back, I added the explanation for the card.

Alpha Stamps Products Used in This Piece



Friday, July 20, 2012

Gypsy Caravan Designed For Alpha Stamps

Whenever I get a new assignment from Alpha Stamps I like to create at least one over the top piece.  This time it’s a gypsy caravan.  The frame is built with the Concertina Chipboard Pennants. The overall dimensions of the piece are 6" wide by 11" tall (that includes the moon topper).  I thought the curve at the top and bottom pennants was an interesting shape for the caravan.  I used the pennants for everything but the roof.  At the bottom of the post you’ll find a complete list of the products I used. 
The picture above is of the back of the caravan.  I used stars, moons and beads to create the beaded curtain.  The steps are made from dollhouse shutters attached to pieces of swirled chipboard.
SIDE ONE
The square piece is a Phases of the Moon Rubber Stamp that I stamped in paper clay and once the piece was dry I colorized it with various colors of guilders paste.
 
SIDE TWO
I used two different beaded trims to accent the sides.
BACK
The doors are made from dollhouse shutters.
TOP PIECE
I used a bead cap to mount the top piece on the roof.  The jeweled moon and silver ring are floating in the middle of the clock.
Side That Opens
One of the sides is hinged and opens to reveal a gypsy fortune teller.  There is a small latch under the roofline that keeps the side closed.
To the inside I attached pillows and a rug made of paper and cotton balls.  When the side closes they fold up into the caravan.
Inside, the gypsy sits behind her table with lace, fabric and lanterns made of beads hanging from a false ceiling that is under the roof.
Here is a picture of the table before I glued it into the caravan.  I used bead caps for the candlesticks and the crystal ball (a marble).  The candles are wooden skewers.  The tarot cards you see on the table are small versions of ATCs that I made a few years ago.  I thought it was fun to use my art as a prop for another piece of art.
Alpha Stamps Products Used in the Piece
Concertina Chipboard Pennants
Celestial Stickers - Top Piece
Antique Wood Clocks - Top Piece
Gilders Paste - Patina – Clay Piece on Side / Moon on Front / Sun on Back
Gilders Paste - Black – Clay Piece on side
Gilders Paste - Copper - Clay piece on side
Cranberry Alcohol Ink- Railing on Front
DRESDEN
BEADS/CHAINS/FRINGE
Wine Beaded Fringe- Roof Fringe
Yellow Gold Beaded Fringe – Roof Fringe
Amber Gypsy Bead Mix in Bottle – Beaded Curtain
Coin Fringe - Side
Large Fancy Oval Beads- Lantern Inside
Iridescent Moon Mix – Beaded Curtain
Iridescent Star Mix- Beaded Curtain / Top Piece
Rosary Chain - Garnet – Table inside
Mauve/Red Bead Mix – Beaded Curtain / Pillows
Lavender/Pink Bead Mix – Beaded Curtain
COLLAGE SHEETS & RUBBER STAMPS
BRASS & METAL
Small Square Brass Hinges - Used to Hinge the Side That Drops Down
Tiny Faux Ring Handles– Front Door
Brass Halo– Top Piece
Large Game Spinners– Top Piece
Fancy Star Bead Caps– Candlesticks and Lanterns on the Back
Gypsy Coin Mix– Table Inside

Stay tuned as there is a lot more of my gypsy art in your future!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Wheel of Fortune Tarot Card – Designed for Alpha Stamps


The Gypsy’s have come to Alpha Stamps and they are one of my favorite subjects!  As you can imagine I was so tickled when I found out that they were our next theme.  I’ve been super busy over the last few weeks creating tons of gypsy themed art.  I’ll be posting the pieces throughout the rest of July and into August. 

This first piece is the tarot card “The Wheel of Fortune”.  The base of the card is made from a chipboard pennant which measures 4” x 6”.  On the back, I added the explanation for the card.  The background papers I used for this piece and several other pieces is the yummy Weekend Market 6” x 6” paper pad that is full of rich vintage colors and images.
Alpha Stamps Products Used in this Piece
I’ve looked into my crystal ball and have seen that there is new gypsy themed video tutorial in your future.