One of my favorite perks of catering is that we often get to bring home leftover flowers from the jobs. (Weddings are the best, of course!) When I get home with my treasures, I wind down by arranging the flowers in the menagerie of little bottles that line my kitchen windowsill. I've been doing this for years and love how enchanted my kitchen window looks with it's colorful glass bottles and gorgeous posies, which change with the wedding themes and the seasons. This is one of the simple moments of my life that I want to remember long after I leave this Martha's Vineyard home.
I was given a scrapbooking challenge by my friend in Singapore, an extremely talented scrapbook and mixed media artist, Michelle Looi, who is also a Design Team member at Let's Scrap. Her challenge was: Flowers/Plants/Trees Overload -in otherwords, the only embellishments that were allowed were flowers or plants in the form of stamping, background paper, patterned paper, die cuts, washi tapes, chipboard, and ready-made or do-it-yourself florals. -The perfect excuse to scrapbook photos of my magical kitchen windowsill!
I chose distressed cardstock that had a very interesting and subtle flower & leaf pattern for my background, and added a leafy green mat for my photos. I inked the edges, of course, using Colorbox
Chestnut and Green Chalk Ink.
I am quite fond of a particular sketch from Let's Scrap that reminded me of a windowsill, so I decided to use that for my design inspiration.
My photos were trimmed to size (I used a square punch for the 6 small pics) and I laid out my page. I felt that it needed a large floral image on the left, so I reached for one of my favorite Donna Downey foam stamps.
Love it! I especially love the silhouette effect...the image came out a tad darker than what I originally intended, but foam stamps hold the ink better than acrylic or even rubber stamps, so the image will always be more profound.
For the sake of balance, I stamped another Donna Downey favorite onto the right side of the page, and added some details with acrylic stamps.
I decided that it would be fun to continue with the stamping and create a look as if the background was a silhouette of the windowsill full of flowers. Of course, this would have been much easier to accomplish if I had thought of it BEFORE I glued down the green mat and my photos!!! (That's the price one pays for working organically, and not being much of a planner when it comes to art...) So I had to mask the areas that I did not want ink on, to make it appear as if the flowers were growing behind the mat.
Another interesting note... As I mentioned earlier, the acrylic stamps do not hold the ink in the same way that foam stamps do. See on the photo below, how the ink is somewhat pooled on the stamp? I found that I had to re-stamp the acrylic flowers...in other words, I had to stamp each image twice...one over the other, to match the intensity of the foam stamped image.
Of course, the beauty of acrylic-mounted stamps, as opposed to wooden mounted ones, is that you can see where you are placing your stamp, so a crisp image is still possible even when you are re-stamping over images.
Here's another example of the masking technique... To avoid getting your stamped image on a particular area of your artwork, just place a sheet of paper over the area you wish to protect. Also note the thin square of foam in the upper right-hand corner. The foam gives your stamp a little extra cushioning for better coverage, (A trick I learned from Heather Corbitt of Kraaft Shaak & Close to My Heart.)
While we're on the topic of masking, here's another interesting stamping tip: There are times when we desire to use only a portion of the stamp. Washi tape (because of its non-aggressive adhesive qualities) can serve as a wonderful mask. Notice on this photo that the leaves of the flower and a part of the stem are covered by the tape. Once the stamp is inked, remove the Washi tape mask & discard...then stamp onto your paper.
You'll notice the stamped title above. This was a wonderful way to achieve consistency on my scrapbook page. I encourage scrapbooking enthusiasts to invest in a variety of alphabet stamps...I find that often, they are the perfect answer to a design dilemma. I also encourage you to purchase more than one set of each set, so that enough letters are at your fingertips to spell out whatever you need to.
So this layout was coming along brilliantly, when I got it into my head that the stamped flowers on top of the green matting needed to have a bottom to anchor them. A vision popped into my head of little stamped bottles on the bottom of my layout, giving the illusion that the flowers were tucked inside of them, as they truly are on my windowsill. Gosh, if only I had little bottle stamps!
I remembered that I have a couple of wonderful clip art booklets by Dove that come with CDs, so the clip art can be printed out in any size you desire. Bingo! One of them was full of fabulous bottle images!
Perfect! After printing out the bottles, I felt that they were too bright white, so I decided to ink them with some Tim Holtz Distress Inks.
(Click on image to view full-size)
I love it when a project works out and I am able to create the vision that was in my head. ...A simple moment of my every-day life, now captured forever in my scrapbook.
Capture your moments & express yourself! -Enikö