7 Creative Map-Inspired Projects

July 28th, 2014

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Summer is the perfect time to travel, and with the rise of hand-dandy GPS devices and smart phone apps, it’s always easy to find where you are and decide where you’re going. Even so, there’s something very special about maps — be it the sweet nostalgia they bring of old family road trips, or more frustrating but humorous memories of having taken a wrong left turn because someone didn’t want to stop and ask for directions. Many maps have our notes scribbled on them, and they show the wear and tear of being messily folded up and stashed back into the glove compartment. They wear their age and carry with them all the charm and mystery of the unexplored. Simply put, maps hold extraordinary images and information which makes them a wonderful material for creative, upcycled projects.

This summer, if you’re taking off on a cross-country vacation or just setting out to explore your city, take a map with you, and jot down thoughts, notes, even affirmations. If you have older maps that are now outdated, don’t throw them out — they’re a beautiful alternative to patterned paper. This post is all about map-inspired projects. With everything from decoupage art and collaged compositions to jewelry making, we’re sure that this list of projects will inspire you to make something beautiful and unique with your maps.

 

A Creative Assortment of Map-Inspired Projects

 

Map-Inspired Projects from GreenCraft Autumn 2011



A Different Place and Time

“The more wear and tear and crease marks a map has, the more interesting it is to me. I consider it a challenge to try and preserve these little pieces of history.” ~Melanie Prior; as appeared in the Autumn 2011 issue of GreenCraft Magazine.

Melanie’s projects are functional and beautiful. From map-covered tin cans that function as whimsical travel-inspired pencil holders to actual map-encased pencils, Melanie picks the most interesting portions of a map to use in her work. Among her unique upcycling projects are her map coasters, which she makes by repurposing not only maps, but also materials like spare marble tiles, old CDs, and leftover pieces of wood.

 

Map-Inspired Projects from GreenCraft Magazine Spring 2013



Paper Squared

Paper crafter and basket weaver Nancy Procter created a stunning paper-weaving technique that allows her to create intricate patterns that are perfect for making boxes, lamp shades, and clutch purses. One of her preferred materials is maps because of the manageability of the paper as well as the intricate designs. You can see all the details of Nancy’s stunning paper weaving technique in the Spring 2013 issue of GreenCraft Magazine.
 

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CD Case Picture Frames

“When I put my eyes on one of the ‘Imagining Green’ calls for artwork in the Autumn 2012 issue of GreenCraft Magazine that challenged readers to find a stylish and functional use for jeweled CD cases, I happily answered the call.” ~Monica Sabolla Gruppo; as appeared in Spring 2013 issue of GreenCraft Magazine.

By taking two completely ordinary things, such as old discarded CD cases and outdated maps, Monica created an extraordinary eco-chic home décor item. These CD case picture frames stand alone and allow you to showcase both an image as well as a map that outlines where the picture was taken. It’s a unique take on memory art as well as a very eco-friendly project.

 

Creative Map-Inspired Projects from GreenCraft Magazine Spring 2012



Charming Travel Keepsake Earrings

This jewelry project by Lorrie Everitt is a creative and beautiful way to carry with you treasured memories of places you’ve visited. All you need are glass tiles, bits of your favorite maps, some Diamond Glaze, and earring hardware. Get the full tutorial in the Spring 2012 issue of GreenCraft Magazine.

 

Creative Map-Inspired Projects from GreenCraft Magazine Spring 2012



A Map for the Road

What better way to commemorate a road trip than by creating a traveling journal out of a road-map atlas? Kristina Roth wanted to journal her way cross country and came up with this imaginative idea in the Spring 2012 issue of GreenCraft Magazine.

 

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Ephemera Pots Projects

This project comes straight out of The Studio. It features three paper mache pots that are altered with paint and decoupaged pieces of torn maps and labels. The end result is a unique display for organizing photographs, recipes, ephemera, and just about anything else you can fit into these pots.

 

Map-Inspired Projects in GreenCraft Magazine Autumn 2010



Push The Envelope

“I also love using items in a different way than what their original purpose was. Thinking outside of the box is important. So using magazines, books, wallpaper, an atlas, maps, etc., to make envelopes or cards, or to use in scrapbooking, seemed a natural progression for me.” ~Dana Horadam; as appeared in the Autumn 2010 issue of GreenCraft Magazine.

Dana’s envelopes come in all shapes and sizes, and they’re made from all sorts of different materials. From book and magazine pages to, of course, our beloved maps. What better way to send greeting cards to people abroad or when traveling than with custom-made envelopes that showcase the places being visited?

 

How Do You Upcycle Maps?

Do you paint over them and bind them into books or do you put them in a frame, hang them up, and let their natural beauty stand out? Maps have very important uses, but they also stimulate the imagination and provide stunning patterned backgrounds for mixed-media projects. We’ve shared a few creative ideas that utilize maps at the heart of projects, but now we want to know how you would use them.

Share your ideas in the comment section below, or better yet send them in as submissions for a chance to be published in GreenCraft Magazine.

Click here to learn more about the submissions process.

 
 


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Gabriela GreenCraft Magazine ,,,,,,,

Summer is the perfect time to travel, and with the rise of hand-dandy GPS devices and smart phone apps, it’s always easy to find where you are and decide where you’re going. Even so, there’s something very special about maps — be it the sweet nostalgia they bring of old family road trips, or more […]

Dream Scrapbook Art Page Project by Anna Dabrowska

July 25th, 2014

Anna Dabrowska's Dream Scrapbook Art Page



Is there anything more dreamlike and surreal than a beautifully composed collage? Picking the right pieces of ephemera, the right images, and the right color scheme is a labor of love, that once completed, brings to life a tiny piece of a strange and beautiful world. Nowhere is that better seen than in this stunning scrapbook page created by the extraordinarily talented Anna Dabrowska.

 

Dream Scrapbook Art Page Materials List:

-Prima Marketing Washi and Fabric Tape – Sunrise Sunset by Finnabair
-Prima Marketing Sunrise Sunset by Finnabair – Paper Pad A4
-Prima Marketing Sunrise Sunset by Finnabair – Vintage Trinkets Flowers 6 pack
-Prima Marketing Sunrise Sunset by Finnabair – Vintage Trinkets Roman Numerals
-Ink Spray
-Lace Ribbon
-Also bits and pieces of your favorite ephemera

 

Anna Dabrowska’s Dream Scrapbook Art Page Tutorial:

Step 1 – Anna’s Dream Scrapbook Art Page is a creative layout with multiple layers and textures. She begins with color and adheres lace trimmings to the outer edges of her page. The outer edges of the page are also framed with machine-stitched black thread.

Step 2 – Once her canvas is ready, she overlaps the Sunrise Sunset papers with the Sunrise Sunset fabric tape.

Step 3 – Next she adds metal flowers and numerals, plus other various embellishments like soda can pull tabs, paper clips, and even the slider portion of a vintage zipper.

The beauty of this project is that it cannot be replicated completely, where as Anna’s style can be. This collage will be a reflection of your own imagination based on what objects and colors you decide to showcase.

When creating your own page, add some mixed-media interest just like Anna did with spray inks, stamping with found objects, stitching, and more.  To recreate Anna’s look, we suggest primarily using her Sunrise Sunset line of products by Prima Marketing.

 

About Anna Dabrowska:

Mixed-media artist, scrapbooker and art journaler Anna Dabrowska, also known as Finnabair, is also an experienced traveling teacher and designs products for Prima Marketing, such as the Sunrise Sunset products featured in this layout. You can view more of her work and travels on her blog: tworzysko.blogspot.com.

 

Want to See More of Anna Dabrowska’s Work?

 

Get tips and techniques from Anna herself in the Autumn 2012 issue of Somerset Apprentice.
 
 
 
 


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Gabriela DIY ,,,,,,

Is there anything more dreamlike and surreal than a beautifully composed collage? Picking the right pieces of ephemera, the right images, and the right color scheme is a labor of love, that once completed, brings to life a tiny piece of a strange and beautiful world. Nowhere is that better seen than in this stunning […]

Learn How to Make Your Own Cling Mount Stamps + Bonus Project

July 21st, 2014

 

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My crafting education continues with a special tutorial on how to create cling mount stamps. Not only are cling mount stamps a more economic option, but they can also save you a lot of space and they’re an eco-friendly choice in regards to total materials used.  Cling mount stamps do not require individual wooden mounts — instead, they can be peeled on and off of a single acrylic block. While no one can deny the appeal of classical wood mounted stamps, being able to afford and store a larger collection of images is pretty darn enticing.

The first instance where I really noticed a clear mount stamp was in this Cottage Garden Journals Project, which also featured Angela Cartwright’s stunning transparencies, and my favorite kraft-colored Moleskine journal. I saw the intricate writing design on the journals and began to investigate where I could find the stamp responsible for the pattern.  The delicate writing ended up being the Da Vinci Text unmounted stamp, and after a quick tutorial I learned how to make and use cling mount stamps for myself.

 

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Products Needed for Creating Cling Mount Stamps:

EZ Mount Sheet 8-1/2 x 11”

Tonic Studios Tim Holtz Kushgrip Snip Scissors

The Notice Unmounted Stamp

Da Vinci Text Unmounted Stamp

Acrylic Blocks

Stamping Ink Pad

Also, don’t forget that you’ll need a canvas upon which to showcase all your lovely stamps. I recommend something from our Cards and Journals Collection, which offers a wide variety of blank canvases that range from stark white to warm kraft-colored surfaces. If you’re looking for a more colorful and dynamic background, you can try out our Artist Paper Packages, which features an assortment of papers with high-quality prints created by talented artists.

 

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How to Mount Your Own Stamps:

First, lay out an EZ Mount sheet on a flat surface. This special foam paper comes with a sticky side that will adhere to your rubber stamp and static cling side that will hold onto your acrylic block. Clean off the smooth side of your rubber stamp in order to prepare it for mounting (we’re using the Da Vinci Text unmounted stamp). Once your stamp is ready, peel back the printed liner of the EZMount Foam sheet and press your rubber stamp onto the exposed adhesive.

After securing a strong bond between your rubber stamp and the sticky side of the EZMount foam sheet, cut your stamp out as close to the image as possible, using Tim Holtz’s Kushgrip Snip Scissors.

 

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When you’re done cutting, peel the liner off the static cling side of the EZMount Foam. Press your completed stamp onto an acrylic block and you’re ready to stamp!

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*Here’s a tip — if the static cling side of your EZMount Foam becomes dusty or dirty, simply wipe it off with a soft, damp cloth, and presto! Your cling mount stamp is ready to be used again.

 

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Peek Into Our Collection Cling Mount and Unmounted Stamps

Cling Mount Stamps Grow your collection of rubber stamps with our economic collection of cling mount stamps. These stamps are rapidly growing in popularity because of all the versatility they offer! Visit us and brows through our impressive assortment of 200+ cling mount & unmounted stamps. Whatever you’re looking for, you’ll find exactly what you need for your mixed-media projects, paper crafting, and art journaling.
 
Click here to explore our collection.

 
 


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Gabriela DIYHow-ToShoppe ,,,,,

  My crafting education continues with a special tutorial on how to create cling mount stamps. Not only are cling mount stamps a more economic option, but they can also save you a lot of space and they’re an eco-friendly choice in regards to total materials used.  Cling mount stamps do not require individual wooden […]

Sweet Shadowbox Project by Guest Artist Cat Kerr

July 17th, 2014

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Cat Kerr has a very special way of breathing artistic life into materials, whether it be fabric, metal, or wood. I fell in love with her little “Ladies-in-Waiting,” which were featured on the cover of our last issue of  Somerset Studio Gallery. Her eye for detail and the end product of her creative endeavors is what led me to ask her to join us on the blog as a guest artist. After reaching out, she kindly accepted our invitation to write a blog post and create a unique project with detailed step-by-step directions.

Now, without further ado, please join me in welcoming Cat Kerr to Somerset Place.

~*~

These charming little shadowbox assemblages were inspired by my current feature in Somerset Studio Gallery called “I See You”. The problem however, was that once I started making them…I couldn’t seem to stop. As in the article, these cardboard boxes can be filled with Paper Whimsy Token Alterables, but since then I’ve filled them with all sorts of goodies like family photos, and memorabilia. Today I’m filling them with beautiful vintage images and sweet sparkly wings.

Sweet Shadowbox Material List:

 

Cat Kerr’s Sweet Shadowbox Tutorial

Step 1 – Cut strips of telephone book paper.

Step 2 – Add some glue in desired locations of the cardboard box (or Chipboard Shrine), place your strip and add an additional layer of glue on top of the telephone strip paper and let dry.

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Step 3 – Add gesso to the outside and inside of the box. You want to be able to see the telephone text so when going over the strips of paper, apply a thin coat of gesso and let dry. Add a layer of Nickel Azo Gold. This is a very strong color so I like to water it down, therefore creating a wash. Next add a final color in assorted areas to the inside of the box ( I used a Tiffany blue). Lastly, use the Punchinella Stencil and a stencil brush to add the design in random areas.

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Step 4 – Add some contrast with black rub-on stickers. Also, splatter a watered-down black paint in random locations using an old toothbrush and let dry.

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Step 5 – Cut a piece of colored burlap, crochet trim, and a piece of ivory tulle fabric slightly larger than the box. Add some  glue to the base and stick them to the inside of the box.

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Step 6 –  Punch two small holes on top of the box. Cut an 8” piece of black steel wire. Using round pliers, create a loop on one end and feed it through the inside part of the box. The loop will keep the wire from coming out. Feed the other end of the wire through the other hole. Once through, create another loop on the end

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Step 7 – Cut out desired image and sticker words. I added a bit of Nickel Azo Gold to the stickers and then mounted them on to black cardstock.

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Step 8 – Add Modge Podge to the wings, and cover in glitter, and let dry. I used two layers of glitter.

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Step 9 – Decide on the placement of your image. Next, glue small wood blocks to the inside of the box. This helps to give your image dimension. I used old wood domino pieces.

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Step 10 – Glue the wings, image, and sticker words. Then add scraps of fabric to the bottom as well as assorted findings like book text, flowers, buttons and seed beads.

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Step 11 – Finish off with flat back crystal on her dress.

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More about Cat Kerr:

Cat Kerr's BlogCat Kerr is a Mixed Media Artist/Instructor that lives in Central Florida with her husband and two kids. Her work has been featured in numerous Stampington publications such as Belle Armoire Jewelry, Somerset Studio and Sew Somerset. She currently teaches online and at retreats around the country. To see more of her work, online shops, and teaching schedule, you can visit her at http://www.catkerr.com

 
 
 
 

Can’t Get Your Fill of Mixed-Media Inspiration?

1SOM-GAL1402-Somerset-Studio-Gallery-Summer-2014-600x600Celebrate a 15-year milestone with this fabulous issue of Somerset Studio Gallery. Brimming with inspiration in 200 lush pages, you’ll see Deborah Company’s mosaic house collages, Michelle E. Black’s beach-themed image transfers, and Cat Kerr’s unique “Ladies-in-Waiting” as featured on the cover.
 
 


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Gabriela DIYGuest ArtistHow-ToSomerset Studio Gallery ,,,,,

Cat Kerr has a very special way of breathing artistic life into materials, whether it be fabric, metal, or wood. I fell in love with her little “Ladies-in-Waiting,” which were featured on the cover of our last issue of  Somerset Studio Gallery. Her eye for detail and the end product of her creative endeavors is […]

Free Article Download: Inspiring Mixed-Media Journal by Donna Downey

July 14th, 2014

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“The whole idea of the Inspiration Journal is that it is a safe place for me to play with new ideas, new media, new thoughts … without having to worry if I’m going to mess it up. I know you know the feeling!”

~ Donna Downey from Somerset Apprentice; Click here to read the full article.

 

We’ve all experienced that feeling — frozen by uncertainty, nervous to draw a line, to press the paint-soaked brush to a crisp, clean page. This sort of hesitation stifles artistic freedom, and it’s for this reason that we must fight against doubt, and silence the critical voice that lives inside us all. Downey’s Inspiration Journal is a lovely exercise that will help you practice stream-of-consciousness creation in a safe and private space.

The Time You Enjoy by Donna Downey
In this free article download, Donna does a wonderful job of breaking down the creative process of this stunning art journal page. Complete with a tools and materials list, this article provides a detailed step-by-step tutorial on recreating the striking muslin flowers that are featured, along with the delicate curled wire detail.

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Click here to download the free article, “The Time You Enjoy,” by Donna Downey that originally appeared in the Spring 2011 issue of Somerset Apprentice.

To learn more about this talented mixed-media artist and pick up some of her special tips and techniques, be sure to visit her blog, Simply Me.

 

Get Even More Mixed-Media Inspiration

1APP-1401-Somerset-Apprentice-Spring-2014-600x600Learn the fundamentals of creating Somerset-style art, one step at a time, with Somerset Apprentice. Successful artists share their favorite tips and techniques, including layered collage, mixed-media, and assemblage art, which are presented through detailed images and clear instructions.

 

 

 

 

We want to hear from you!

Do you have a safe place where you create? Is it on your kitchen table or perhaps in a special art journal? Let us know in the comment section below.

 


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Gabriela Free Article DownloadFreebiesHow-ToSomerset Apprentice ,,,,,,,

  “The whole idea of the Inspiration Journal is that it is a safe place for me to play with new ideas, new media, new thoughts … without having to worry if I’m going to mess it up. I know you know the feeling!” ~ Donna Downey from Somerset Apprentice; Click here to read the […]

Stamping on Metal with the Steel Letter and Number Stamp Set

July 10th, 2014

Steel Letter and Number Stamp Set Project



Unleash a new world of creative possibilities with our Steel Letter and Number Stamp Set, and for a limited time, enjoy a special 15% off discount. Scroll down to learn how to make these metal-stamped Dog Tag necklaces.

Steel Letter and Number Stamp Set

Embellishing metal, leather, or wax has never been so much fun! This wonderful set of steel stamps will allow you to imprint names and numbers on your artwork by simply tapping the stamps with a hammer or other hard materials. Perfect for leaving lasting impressions on copper gardening tags or metal journals, this set of stamps opens the doors to a whole new level of creativity. Find your favorite crafting tin or metal surface, and stamp a touching phrase or encouraging word.

Steel Letter and Number Stamp Set

 

Steel Letter and Number Stamp Set Product Details:

- 26 Letter Stamps
- “&” Sign Stamp
- Number Stamps, 0 – 8 (turn “6” upside down and use as “9”)
- Special High-Carbon Stamps will Endure 9000 Markings Each
- Available in Two Sizes — 1/4 Inches High and 1/8 Inches High

Steel Letter and Number Stamp Set

What Does Our Resident Crafter Have to Say?

I really love the look of metal stamping, and when I recently took over as Shoppe Manager at The Shoppe at Somerset, I was surprised and pleased to learn that we carry two different sizes of metal stamp sets. Metal stamping is a practice-makes-perfect technique, but practicing can be so much fun! It’s important to use a steel block and steel hammer when metal stamping in order to get the best results.

Once you’ve got all of your supplies for metal stamping, the sky’s the limit. I like to use our steel stamps to write inspirational words on our dog tags, which are available in both brass and stainless steel, and come in packs of six. Also, you can add even more depth and interest to your dog tags by using Iced Enamel Powders by ICE Resin. You can quickly and easily whip up personalized gifts for friends and family, or add custom metal pieces to your mixed-media artwork. This is one purchase that you will definitely get plenty of mileage from.

Steel Letter and Number Stamp Set Project
Metal Stamped Dog Tag Project:

Step 1 – Adhere a dog tag of your choice to a stamping block with tape. (We used washi tape, since it doesn’t leave any residue).

Step 2 – Carefully position each stamp on the tag, and then firmly hit it with a steel hammer once. Do not hit the stamp more than one time because that will cause a shadow effect.

Step 3 – Repeat for all letters, then attach seam binding ribbon in your desired color.

 

Ready to Create More One-of-a-Kind Wearable Art?

Jewelry Making CollectionVisit our extensive Jewelry Making Collection and find everything you need to start crafting your own signature pieces from start to finish. We have all of the best tools of the trade, stunning findings and charms, and plenty of inspiration in the form of jewelry making books and free project tutorials to get you started.

 
 
 
 


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Gabriela DIYHow-ToShoppe ,,,,,,

Unleash a new world of creative possibilities with our Steel Letter and Number Stamp Set, and for a limited time, enjoy a special 15% off discount. Scroll down to learn how to make these metal-stamped Dog Tag necklaces. Steel Letter and Number Stamp Set Embellishing metal, leather, or wax has never been so much fun! […]

Summer Adventures Tote Bag Project

July 7th, 2014

Summer Adventures Tote Project



For most of us, summer is in full swing, which means trips to the beach, pool, and other fun out-door adventures. Our Large Craft Tote Bag is quite versatile and it can be used as an artful craft bag, a roomy beach tote, or to hold just about anything you can come up with. Best of all it’s made of durable canvas material that’s ready to be brought to life by your creative touch. This tote bag can be altered using fabric, color, embellishments, and so much more!

We want to encourage our readers to have an artistic and fulfilling summer, and what better way to support creative exploration than with this beautiful and functional Adventure Tote Bag Project? Take some cues from us and replicate this project to create a lively green bag or create something completely unique and personalized! This project has so many creative possibilities that I can’t wait to try my hand at making my own. For my tote, I am thinking of something beach themed.

What will you create?

 

Materials for the Summer Adventures Tote Bag Project:

-Large Craft Tote Bag
-Lattice Stencil – 12 x 12
-White Fabric Paint
-Green Rit Dye
-Foam Brush
-Scratch Alphabet Large Clearly Impressed Stamp Set by Julie van Oosten
-Black StazOn Ink

 

Summer Adventures Tote Bag Project Instructions:

Step 1 – For this project we decided to rit dye the tote bag a nice green color. We used liquid rit dye and did it in the washing machine, which was super quick and easy. Make sure you do an extra rinse cycle (or two) after the actual color wash. This helps to rinse out any excess of color and prevent the color from staining the machine and anything you may wash in the future. However, you may want to do a couple of dark loads after doing a rit dye project, just to be on the safe side!

Step 2 – Rather than line dry, we ran the tote bag through the dryer and it worked out well. This will help you save a little extra time, especially if you can’t wait to start altering your bag. It also softens up the fabric a little bit so that it isn’t quite as stiff, which can be helpful when you start stamping and stenciling on the bag.

Summer Adventures Tote Project

Step 3 – Once the bag is completely dry, you can start stenciling! We used the 12 x 12 Lattice Stencil with white fabric paint and a foam brush (unfortunately, we no longer carry this particular stencil in The Shoppe but we do have many alternative options in our Stencil Collection). We intentionally left some portions blank and just dabbed the paint through the stencil to give the tote bag a more weather-worn appearance. Also, when working on a bag like this one, it can be a bit difficult to get it completely flat so trying to cover the entire thing with a neat stenciling technique would be very hard. Embrace the imperfections!

Step 4 – For a last bit of detail, we stamped a few half-circles to create a scallop edge designs along the top edge of the tote.

Step 5 – Finally, along the bottom of the bag we stamped the word “ADVENTURE” using black StanzOn Ink and Julie van Oosten’s Large Clearly Impressed Scratch Alphabet Stamp Set.

Summer Adventures Tote Project

 

Want Even More Tote Bag Inspiration?

Tote Bag Project Inspiration - Haute Handbag MagazineHow do you carry it? Peek inside the the pages of Haute Handbags and see how well-known artists create unique purses, clutches, totes, portfolios, sacks, bags, and much more.

 
 
 
 
 
 


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Gabriela DIYHaute HandbagsHow-To ,,,,,,

For most of us, summer is in full swing, which means trips to the beach, pool, and other fun out-door adventures. Our Large Craft Tote Bag is quite versatile and it can be used as an artful craft bag, a roomy beach tote, or to hold just about anything you can come up with. Best […]

Glimpse Inside: Inspiring July Issues + Win Your Choice

July 3rd, 2014

Keep yourself creatively occupied this summer with a colorful assortment of inspiring magazines. Our July issues are jam-packed with artistic projects that will keep your imagination on its toes. Create a bright journal and record all of your summertime adventures with Art Journaling or plan the perfect outdoor get together with this month’s issue of Mingle. If you’re ready to take your creative endeavors to the next level and start your very own business, then you won’t want to miss all the valuable advice that’s offered in our Summer Issue of Where Women Create BUSINESS. We have something for everyone — so there’s no excuse to send your creativity on vacation!

 

Discount

 

We’re offering our blog followers an exclusive deal because we love and appreciate them. Use the promo code BLOG0714 and receive $5 off any of our enticing July issues. Just make sure you copy and paste the coupon code when prompted at checkout.

 

 

 

 Somerset Studio

Somerset Studio - 2014 July Issues

Welcome to a magical place of inspiration, where paper crafting, art stamping, and the lettering arts are elevated to an artistic level, in Somerset Studio. In this issue, we share an Artist Profile on Tracy Verdugo, stunning silhouettes made from rusty bits, and a mixed-media experiment held on a receipt paper roll. Get an inside look at Ranger’s Designer Challenge, peek into the whimsical world of Juliette Crane, and revel in breathtaking collages inspired by Jane Austen. Each issue also comes with four free designer artist papers and clip art that readers can use in their next handmade project.

 

 Mingle

Mingle - 2014 July Issues

Brighten your day with the visual feast of imaginative gatherings that unfold from the pages of Mingle, along with the uplifting stories behind uniquely creative get-togethers. This issue shares Gathering with Friends for a Cause: a party designed to celebrate and welcome the adoption of a baby boy from Uganda, and a Cherish the Classics event by Nicole Gould that celebrates friendship, classic literature, and the first day of kindergarten. Other themed gatherings include a Grumpy Old Men Day full of men’s thrift store outfits, donuts, golf, and shenanigans, and Patty Smith’s first birthday party styled after “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn,” complete with a ruffled denim tablecloth made from jeans.

 

Art Journaling

Art Journaling - 2014 July Issues

From stamping and collage art to painting and sketching, every quarterly issue of Art Journaling is filled with innovative techniques that you’ll want to try in your own art journal. In this issue, find out how Heather Kindt transforms magazine pages into art, and see how Lindsay Ostrom turns trash into treasure in her Junk Journal. Renee Stien draws inspiration from Mother Nature in her garden-themed journal, and Roc Nicholas stitches ephemera into a stunning journal that you will not want to miss.

 

Jewelry Affaire

Jewelry Affaire - 2014 July Issues

Summer is finally here, which means airing out your swimsuit, sipping an iced-cold drink by the pool, and of course, reading the latest issue of Jewelry Affaire! Want to know the latest trends for the season? Just peruse our pages, and see how Sandra Younger creates beautifully aesthetic wearable delights using her special hemp cord techniques. You’ll also learn how to upcycle belts, vintage watches, and a complete silverware collection into your very own jewelry line. Select your very own style of black tie affaire from jewelry artists Debbie Cole, Gretchen Nation, and Donna Miyasko-Blanco.

 

The Stampers’ Sampler

The Stampers Sampler - 2014 July Issues

Hold on to your brooms, and get ready for our 2014 Frightful & Delightful Challenge results! This annual Halloween-themed stamping challenge is a favorite for our readers, and the 20 pages of daring designs are sure to scare your socks off. In tribute to our favorite spooky season, we also present readers with the results from our special Witch Hat Template Challenge. Mixed-media techniques, hand-carved goodies, and tips on how to add texture to your stamped projects also await you in this jam-packed issue. Included, as always, is a free artist paper and brand-new set of challenges — so hurry and reserve your copy today!

 

Belle Armoire

Belle Armoire - 2014 July Issues

French for “beautiful wardrobe,” Belle Armoire® marries fabric arts with a variety of mediums – showcasing one-of-a-kind, handmade fashions. This issue shares gorgeous leaf-dyed clothing from Michelle Hoffee of Living and Dyeing and a Designer Collection from artist Dawn Younger-Smith, The Boudoir Queen. Gather inspiration from Michelle Newman, who writes a “Knitting Down Under” column in Australia, and find painted clothing, nuno-felting, dyeing, and other interesting techniques that will inspire you to infuse your own style into your next wearable-art project.

 

Somerset Life

Somerset Life - 2014 July Issues

Somerset Life provides an abundance of inspiring ideas to infuse your daily life with simple pleasures, art, romance, creativity and beauty. In this issue, you will delight in gift toppers made from wax-dipped leaves, a clever letter written on a spool, and a stunning muslin necklace. Learn how to artistically give a bouquet of flowers, and discover three unexpected ways to use a single caddy. The imaginative ideas and breathtaking photography that fill these pages will inspire you to make every day extraordinary.

 

Where Women Create BUSINESS

Where Women Create BUSINESS - 2014 July Issues

Where Women Create BUSINESS is an invaluable guide for every woman business owner – from those just starting out to experienced artisans. Through advice columns and in-depth feature articles, it offers a multitude of knowledge and inspiration to women with a passion for success. In this issue, we share insights from Clothing designer Nancy Traugott of Homefrocks, the mother and daughters behind Junk Gypsy, and Jennie Nigrosh, inventor of The Green Garmento garment bag. Don’t miss informative features on Sherry Horton, who creates soaps, lotions, and potpourri through E. Barrett & Co. and the owners of event location Pecan Springs Ranch, Judy and Paige Smith.

 

Your Chance to Win One of Our July Issues!

We’re giving away brand-new July Issues to THREE lucky winners! Simply follow these steps to enter for your chance to win:

1) Click on your favorite spread above.

2) Pin or “Like” that particular issue. 

3) If you pinned to Pinterest, share the link in the comments section below. If you “liked” on Facebook, tag us so we can see. 

4) If you don’t have Facebook or Pinterest, please comment below and tell us which issue you find most appealing and why.

 

*Winners are selected at random and will be contacted via email. *$5 off discount applies to purchases of any of the following 2014 July Issues only: Somerset Studio, Art Journaling, Belle Armoire, Jewelry Affaire, Mingle, Somerset Life, The Stampers’ Sampler, and Where Women Create BUSINESS. Discount code can be used only one time per customer, and expires 07/31/14. Contest is open to U.S. residents and ends 07/31/14 at 11:59pm.

 
 

Congratulations to Our Glimpse Inside Winners for the Month of June:

Stamping Sue, Barbara Moor, and Laura Quick



 
 


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Gabriela Art JournalingBelle ArmoireGiveawayJewelry AffaireMingleSomerset LifeSomerset StudioThe Stampers' SamplerWhere Women Create BUSINESS ,,,,

Keep yourself creatively occupied this summer with a colorful assortment of inspiring magazines. Our July issues are jam-packed with artistic projects that will keep your imagination on its toes. Create a bright journal and record all of your summertime adventures with Art Journaling or plan the perfect outdoor get together with this month’s issue of […]

A Book of Quotes: Art Journal Inspiration with Editor Amber Demien

June 30th, 2014

Image of Amber Demien

I am pretty new to the world of art journaling, although I’ve been doing it all my life.  As a child, I remember watching my mother write in her journal; mostly she jotted down passages from a poem or her favorite lyrics of a song. It seemed to me that her journal was a place of pretty words, even if they weren’t really hers. You see, some people collect buttons and some people collect stamps, but my mother collected meaningful and inspiring words. So imagine my delight when Amber Demien, the Managing Editor of Art Journaling, told me about her idea to create a journal where she planned to gather all of her favorite quotes.

Clearly, there’s no “one true way” to write, paint, or draw in an art journal. A journal is a safe place for self-expression, no matter what form that expression takes. Flipping through the pages of our July issue of Art Journaling, I am simply amazed at each and every creation I see. There are so many unique ideas and all of them are thoughtful and beautiful in their own way. We’re very fortunate to have Amber join us here at Somerset Place because her particular idea for this art journal is something that anyone can do.

~*~

Believe In the Truth Mixed Media Journal Project



Considering my line of work, it probably comes as no surprise that I love quotes. I love flipping leisurely through books of quotes and perusing quotes websites (two of my favorite websites are quotegarden.com and goodreads.com). I keep a folder on the desktop of my computer at work so when I unexpectedly come across a quote online, I can save it to inspire me again on another day. This is also a great mental exercise while at work, when I need to take a short break from whatever I am working on: I pop on over to a quotes website, and soak up some words of wisdom.

During my most introspective moods, I tend to bury myself in a good book; but if that isn’t possible, swimming through a sea of quotes is the next best thing. I turn to quotes to be cheered up, to be inspired, and sometimes I even exacerbate a bad mood by reading quotes on melancholy topics … which I don’t recommend. Quotes can also serve as advice. Recently, I fell out of touch with a close friend who had moved away. My efforts to stay connected weren’t returned, and I was left feeling hurt and rather bitter about friendship in general. Wondering whether my expectations were too high, I searched for quotes online for some advice about friendship. I must say that I found many quotes that offered me perspective and comfort, some that encouraged me to be hopeful and optimistic, and even some that justified my bitter mood. Here is one of my favorites: “Growing apart doesn’t change the fact that for a long time we grew side by side; our roots will always be tangled. I’m glad for that” ~Ally Condie.

 

072_LFE1013v2~Photo by Vivienne McMaster from our Autumn 2013 issue of Somerset Life


I’ve spoken with many artists who feel similarly about quotes. Sometimes a world of inspiration can be found in the words of others — words can be a key that opens up a door inside of you. I’ve been working on a small collage journal lately, but haven’t added one word to it — not because I haven’t wanted to, but because I felt that this particular journal was meant for something different. It dawned on me recently that this journal would be the perfect place to collect my favorite quotes — much more meaningful and permanent than a folder in my computer. Since my epiphany, I have daydreamed about my son picking up this journal in the future, reading through the many wise, inspiring words, and experiencing the same profound impact that they had upon me. I can’t wait to get started.

~*~

Thanks so much for sharing this unique idea with us Amber Demien. I am sure most of us have our very own collection of quotes, either stashed away in a drawer somewhere or saved on a Pinterest board. This is a good way to incorporate all those important words into a creative space where they’ll always be within reach.

 

Want More Creative Ideas for Your Art Journal?

Art Journaling Summer 2014For more creative project ideas, as well as tips and techniques from well-known artists, check out our July issue of Art Journaling.

 
 
 
 
 
 


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Gabriela Art JournalingEditor Spotlight ,,,,

I am pretty new to the world of art journaling, although I’ve been doing it all my life.  As a child, I remember watching my mother write in her journal; mostly she jotted down passages from a poem or her favorite lyrics of a song. It seemed to me that her journal was a place […]

Red Stitched Card Project by Guest Artist Ella Wilson

June 26th, 2014

Summer 2014 Sew Somerset



Today we are very fortunate to have the wonderful Ella Wilson with us. Ella has been featured in the pages of our Summer 2014 issue of Sew Somerset, Spring 2014 issue of Somerset Memories, and the Winter 2014 issue of Art Journaling. She has kindly agreed to create an exclusive tutorial for our blog readers, which showcases her unique blend of black-and-white photography and vibrant red thread. Ella captures a nearly palpable raw feeling of human connection in her artwork; it was that strong sense of emotion that made me seek her out as a guest artist after seeing and falling in love with her Simply Red Journal.

After spending some time getting to know Ella and learning more about her creative process, her family, and the significance of the red thread, I knew I just had to share what I discovered. Now that Ella has happily shared her techniques, I am curious to see how some of you would apply her bold stitching and image manipulation to your own art journal projects.

Summer 2014 Sew Somerset



“An invisible red thread connects those destined to meet, regardless of time, place, or circumstances. The thread may stretch or tangle, but never break.”  – Chinese Proverb

This quote, to me, is about love n’ kindness, and how we connect to one another.  Being a military spouse, I have lived in many locations and have been exposed to many cultures.  Moving around so much was difficult sometimes; I didn’t understand the language or the customs of my new neighbors. However, with respect, kindness, and a smile I found my way. I believe the red thread speaks of our humanity, our connection to others, and how we react and cope.

The photos I selected for my project share a sentiment of what makes us human— the joy of riding a bike, the celebration of a wedding, the homecoming of a loved one, the adventure of sightseeing through fresh eyes, or the simple delight of hugging a good friend. Have you ever met someone you instantly felt a connection with? I have, and I always feel as if fate played a hand in it.

If we just remain true to ourselves and follow our passions, then we’ll end up living the life we’re suppose to live. My father died while I was in college and I didn’t follow the career path I had wanted.  Somehow — through all of life’s difficulties, like losing my first child and becoming a Type 1 diabetic — I learned that I had to walk through dark clouds to become the person I was meant to be.

The love we feel for each other and humanity as a whole should never be severed. If it is, we won’t be human anymore. That’s what the red thread symbolizes to me, an unbreakable bond. Sometimes we need to be reminded to find joy, search for the people who understand us and love us no matter what.  It takes time, but as you walk through life’s tangled path, you will learn that it was all worth it.  All the people you meet along the way will help you discover who you are; in turn you will help them, too.  I make my journals and cards to remind others to look for passion, which lives in those precious colorful moments.  Sometimes artists get lost in their world of creating, but we have to live to create and we have to create to live.

REDTHREADARTSUPPLIES-064

Materials for Ella Wilson’s Red Stitched Cards:

-Blank Cards and Envelopes
-Red Thread or Twine
-Embroidery Needles
-Scissors
-Adhesive
-Toothpicks
-Fabric
-Embellishments
-Ink
-ColorBox Archival Dye-Wicked Black
-Red Wood Bingo Tiles
-Black and White Photographs
-Cardstock
-Red Fine Point Marker

Rubber Stamps:

-Pressed Profile Wood Mounted Stamp by Christine Adolph
-Tim Holtz: Slight Alterations Collection CMS
-Cavallini & Co. Mini Rubber Stamp Set – Mini Lowercase Alphabet

B11002

Ella Wilson’s Red Stitched Card Tutorial:

Step 1 - Take a blank card and stamp the background.  I started with black and when dry — I used red ink.  I made several cards at once.

Step 2 - Now, make copies of the photos on cardstock.  Cut out your images and attach the image to the card, with glue.  Dot the glue onto the corner of the image, smearing some towards middle-with a toothpick, in this case less is definitely better.

Step 3 - Now, stamp floral image between the girls using red ink.   I like the idea of growth as a symbol of their friendship.

Step 4 - While the glue dries, cut out fabric and select embellishments.

Step 5 - Gather wet n’ dry paper towels for the alphabet stamps. You’ll be stamping words onto your patches of fabric. I used words the word Kindred because it also has the word “red” in it. Kindred has two ds and because you’ll be using black and red ink, you’ll want to make sure you clean your stamp between uses.

Step 6 - Set stamped word aside, it’s time to sew!  I poked holes into the designated areas before stitching; it makes things a lot easier.

Step 7 - Use a medium embroidery needle, with 6 strands of thread, knot at both ends.  I connected the taller girl’s third eye to her friend’s hand. Leave a few inches of thread for later.

KINDREDkid017

Step 8 - Move your thread to the side and glue your piece of fabric onto your card.  Tie a charm onto the portion of the red thread that’s left hanging and make several knots at the end of it. I used a small golden key.

Step 9 – Stitch a little collar design onto one of the images.

Step 10 - Glue on the remaining embellishments, like your Red Wooden Bingo Tiles and let dry.

Step 11 - Use a red maker to highlight the ends of the key E.

There, you’re all done — we are all connected by our humanity.

 

Read About Ella Wilson in the Summer 2014 Issue of Sew Somerset

1SOM-SEW1402-Sew-Somerset-Summer-2014-175x175Thank you so much Ella for providing us with such a wonderful tutorial. To read more about Ella Wilson’s crafting style and mixed-media techniques be sure to pick up a copy of the Summer 2014 issue of Sew Somerset

 

To see more of Ella’s artwork and read more of her inspirational writing, visit her blog at: ellasedge.blogspot.com

 
 


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Gabriela DIYGuest ArtistHow-To ,,,,

Today we are very fortunate to have the wonderful Ella Wilson with us. Ella has been featured in the pages of our Summer 2014 issue of Sew Somerset, Spring 2014 issue of Somerset Memories, and the Winter 2014 issue of Art Journaling. She has kindly agreed to create an exclusive tutorial for our blog readers, which […]