Tuesday 29 December 2020

New Beginnings, a big thank you and the final freebie of this year

 Dear friends, Hope you are all keeping well and healthy. I did not want to end this year without one final post to say a big thank you for all your lovely comments and visits during this very strange and different year.

I know Christmas itself is over, but I like to celebrate right through the 12 Days of Christmas, so today I am sharing my final Christmas journal for this season. It is a bit more grungy than some of my other journals and I used a mix of one of my downloadable Christmas Collections and vintage papers, mostly from Paper Garden Finland. Below some photos with brief descriptions of how I put it together.

Here is the cover, the journal is Travelers Notebook size (roughly 8 1/4 by 4 1/4") it has one insert stitched inside the cover on my sewing machine and then I zig zagged right around the out side. As you can see it closes with some crinkly seam binding and I collaged and stitched some bits and pieces from my stash to decorate the front.

A large tag fits inside a full length pocket made from one of the papers in the collection. I sewed around both the tag and the paper that makes the pocket and then glued around 3 sides onto the cover from the inside. The closure ribbon is glued behind it. Hope this all makes sense.

Here is another large pocket that has two flaps, each holding a pocket too, so the whole thing is very interactive with lots of space for journaling cards, smaller tags etc. I used various images from some of my other Christmas Collections and freebies to decorate these flaps and pockets.

Another double page with a little fold out booklet that tucks inside another pocket.

Some of the vintage papers sewn inside

And here a bookmark or tag that fits under a belly band enhanced with some lace.

Here you can see some of the tags and journal cards that fit in the pockets.
Below is an image from one of the embellishment papers that comes with the Christmas collection so you can see what I used for some of the tags etc.

Now the freebie I put together for you matches this pretty well, and even though Christmas is now over, I hope you can still use some of them for your winter projects or otherwise use them for Christmas in another year.

Like usual, if you want the full resolution for printing, just email me and I will finish by wishing you all a very happy and creative New Year!
Thanks for your visit like always

Friday 4 December 2020

A Merry Little Christmas and a sad announcement for A Vintage Journey

Hello all and welcome.

Let me start by saying this is going to be a somewhat unusual post in more ways than one, but sometimes we have to bite the bullet, so bare with me..

This time of year usually brings us festive cheer and a focus  on seasonal projects to inspire and motivate us leading into the winter and up to Christmas. 

2020 no doubt has brought us all many different kinds of opportunities and challenges and while many people are able to enjoy their hobbies and pastimes, others have suffered greatly as we all know on so many different levels. For me and many others, what has become particularly noticeable is how we, as a creative community, seem to have changed our habits using the internet and over past months a wider use of differing social media platforms has allowed many to reach into each other's studios and meet together to learn and share our creations in a fascinating variety of distanced ways. Internet relationships for many seem not to have suffered but blossomed allowing us to diversify and explore hobbies and interests we might never have had before. Even though personally I largely boycott Facebook and Twitter as poisonous places of polarisation, I do use Instagram as many of you know, even though it is owned by Facebook. My only design team in this past year has been A Vintage Journey, and as Brenda says in her post there, "AVJ has always tried to be a place to motivate, inspire and share creations within a likeminded community, a place to teach and learn, to excite and stretch the boundaries of our imaginations. But within this new world we live in and the changes to how we interact, blogging seems to be less popular than it was. It can be a very time consuming way to 'show and tell' whilst elsewhere 'like' buttons that are quicker and easier to express our feelings enable us to move around the community in much faster ways. It is, therefore, with great sadness that we have seen fewer visits, entries and communications on our very successful blog and feel it is time to close it down and give ourselves time to see out the pandemic and watch with interest how the community relates to the changes it has brought to how we will all operate in the future".

Reading the comments here, I am adding a quick post script, I am not closing my own blog, this is about the Vintage Journey Blog and challenges only!!

As the creative guides we decided to come together for one last challenge to share small ATC creations that focus on that Christmas cheer we look forward to and some nostalgic reflection in saying goodbye.

So I will share two different ATCs created for this challenge, the first just to say goodbye to the challenges at AVJ and the second as a contribution to the "Merry Little Christmas" theme.

For this first one, I pulled out some of my Tim Holtz stash, because in the first years of AVJ we were mainly a Tim Holtz inspired challenge. I created a mixed media type background and then collaged some other elements, the "found relative" paper doll girl, to symbolise the friendships we all formed in our years designing for the challenge, my fellow creative guides there really have become like a new family of friends.

I did some stitching around the edges, added some old book page and the word create, for more than anything that's what AVJ has done over the years, encourage us to create, just for the joy of it.

I added some shadow with a Stabilo All pencil to add some more depth, and finished the collage composition with a wax seal.

For my second ATC, I again created a mixed media background, but this time added some collage elements from one of my own paper collections on Etsy
This one was finished in a very similar way. I chose the word Peace, because more than anything I hope that this Christmas, fear, anxiety and uncertainty will be replaced by some peace in people's hearts and minds.

Well, that's it for now. If you would like more detail on the challenge or feel tempted to play along for one last time, please head over to the Vintage Journey Blog, where there is of course also loads of inspiration from my teamies.

Thank you for visiting here like always, stay safe and well, and keep crafting and creating!

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Just got a whole lot of new stamps from a brilliant place called the Stamp Smith. This is the image that I first saw on Docraft and really liked. I asked the friend who has used it in an ATC, where she got it. Well she borrowed it from a friend who got it from ebay as a one off. But.... it had a title. I googled the title, and hey presto found the site. They have great stamps and offer a really friendly fast service. I highly recommend them!

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