Thursday, June 7, 2012

Speaking of Butterflies...

I am not a scrapbook person, so I have never invested in a die-cut machine.  However, I recently inherited a Sizzix Big Shot Machine and finally had some time to play with it.  I took my butterfly die and a bunch of my scrap papers and started cutting out butterflies.

I have a stash of blank stationery which was screaming for decoration and embellishment.  For fun, I made a few pop-up butterfly cards.  Next, I took out my other new toy, a battery-operated sewing machine!  It only makes one type of stitch, and it doesn't have a very fine touch, but it does the trick.  Look how I sewed paper butterflies onto my blank cards!

The card in the middle photo will be a graduation card.  I cut out a bunch of words from assorted magazines and glued them to the paper butterfly.  Then I sewed the butterfly onto a blank card and embellished the head with a single Swarovski crystal.  I really liked how this turned out.

I can't take much credit for the card in the bottom photo.  It was created from a shell ornament I found at a rummage sale for 25 cents! 

Sunday, June 3, 2012


Whenever I pick up my next (and in this case, my last) book in this AB RR, I find myself always wanting to experiment with a new technique.  However, it takes time to find a technique that 1) inspires me and 2) that I have all the materials for.  In the case of Rebecca's "Wings" book, I turned to my friend Su for inspiration.  She and I got together for an art play date last weekend and she brought out a roll of contact paper and asked me for some glitter.  Before long, she had created a fun spread in a little hand-made book that she was collaborating on with a group of friends.  I liked the "see-through" effect that the clear contact paper had if you placed it in a cut-out shape.  I thought they would make pretty butterfly wings.

So that got me thinking of making a butterfly...but I can't tell you how many butterflies already made their way into Rebecca's book!  So then I wanted to do a completely different take on the "wings" theme--like doing a spread all about airplanes or something.  I thought about angel wings and even envisioned the gossamer wings of a dragonfly.  I really tried to get away from the butterfly idea, but when I went to look for outlines of different kinds of wings, it was this (butterfly) style that caught my eye.  Oh well.

I created a template for the wing by tracing around the edges.  I used this template to cut out a wing-shaped window in the pages of Rebecca's book.  Since the wings are mirror-images of each other, I reversed the template to create the other side.  Next came the fun part.  I printed the wing pattern onto a transparency and cut it down to the size of the book page.  Then, I cut out a piece of the contact paper (also the size of the book page) and started to decorate it with different types of glitter.  I found that placing the transparency of the wing underneath the contact paper gave me a guide where to place the glitter to fill in the wing shape.

When I was done with the glitter, I placed another sheet of contact paper on top and burnished it to fix the glitter into place.  I positioned the decorated contact paper between the pages with the wing cut-outs.  I lightly colored the background with pink and purple inkpads (since those are Rebecca's favorite colors) and added the pink ribbon trim to the edges of the pages to frame the butterfly figure.  I love how this contact paper-glitter technique gives the wings a truly delicate feel.