The thing that really switched me on to crafting was the grungy steampunk I found in Tim Holtz's work and products, but most of my projects have mutated via shabby chic into something slightly different (I got distracted by all the pretty papers around!)... So I wanted to try something a bit more purely steampunk, like the stuff I'd played with early on before I discovered all this blogging business!
This is, in fact, an altered piece. It started with a bookmark which had been lying on my staircase forever. I found her slightly disturbing to start with, I have to say - that very intense stare and those slightly strangely clasped hands... besides, there's nothing spookier than a spooky child!
I also wanted a suitable project with which to use metallics, so that I could finally join in with the Studio L3 challenge. A hugely talented bunch of crafters, hosted by the fabulous Linda Ledbetter, have been working their way through the techniques in Tim Holtz's Compendium of Curiosities II.
I ordered the book several months ago, and have at last got home to unpack the parcel, so I get to join in with the Perfect Pearls Mist technique on page 54 - better late than never, I say! You can see the results of the technique here on the right... but I'm not allowed to reveal its secrets!
I'm using it to create a frame for my steampunk puppeteer.
The little steampunk flying cyclist came from some digital wallpaper I downloaded for free months ago, and I'm ashamed to say I can't any longer remember where from. (If anyone recognises it, do please let me know, so that I can add the credit.)
He's had a coat of UTEE, partly to strengthen him, as the fussy cutting has some very delicate parts. The added bonus is that you get some dimensionality and that spectacular glossiness!
She's dangling him on a piece of black cord, part of an Ikea jumbo present-wrapping set bought years ago for peanuts in the Christmas sale. I started with a loop of it, but decided it looked more as though it was between her fingers with a little snip taken out.
The puppeteer herself is sporting a false eye created from a wheel from that same steampunk wallpaper, also glossy with UTEE. Her skin is Tattered Rose, applied with a blending tool.
Her dress is also coloured very roughly using a blending tool (I didn't want to get into 'colouring-in' too perfectly), with shades of Broken China, Tumbled Glass and Dried Marigold Distress Inks.
There's a touch of Picket Fence Distress Marker on the lace of her collar and cuffs, and on her necklace. The pearls have also got a lovely dimensional coat of Glossy Accents too, to pick them out.
I used the fine end of the Barn Door Distress Marker for her lips and nails, and Peeled Paint to give her a touch of eyeshadow.
I like a sentiment to be a little ambiguous sometimes - so that you're not quite sure what's being said - you have to stop and think. This one could, I suppose, be either quite reassuring or quite threatening... look in her eye(s) and see what it says to you!
I inked some plain cardstock with Dried Marigold and stamped the words in Archival Black with my little alphabet set. The extra little stamped industrial and clock bits are from a freebie stamp included with one of my PaperArtsy orders (thank you, PaperArtsy!).
I cut jagged corners around the words, edged it with Black Soot, and gave it a little spritz of Perfect Pearls Mist in Pewter. And there's another wheel from the digital wallpaper, UTEE'd and added to the sentiment.
The gears in the bottom right corner are cut from the DCWV Tattered Time matstack, so have their own built-in gloss. And I've added one of the TH Idea-ology gears to the centre of one of the paper gears. I think it all looks great against that metallic Perfect Pearls Mist frame - such a fantastic technique.
I added a couple of bits of black coil to the piece - it's just that stuff you twist round to seal a plastic bag or whatever... again saved from some packaging at some point. Hoarding does have its uses! I think you can see it better in the picture on the left.
I backed the altered bookmark onto some more plain card, coloured with Dried Marigold so that it would make it stand out against the embossed frame (it's the TH Distressed Frame embossing folder twice and joined together so that it would be long enough for her).
Finally, I added a couple more gears round the puppeteer to finish it off. Had to use up the last of my silver ones so that it would all tone in - oops, now I need some more...!
I'm so glad to be reunited with the remainder of my stash (I couldn't take all of it to the Czech Republic), and also very excited to unpack the parcels which had been arriving in my absence (can't pass up an ebay bargain - even if I know I'm not going to get my hands on it immediately!).
Lots of lovely things to play around with... though I've also got a lot to do getting things ready for my brother's wedding. You'll get to see how that turns out after the 12th August, because there's quite a lot of crafting of one sort or another involved, but I have to keep it all secret until then!
I should just quickly say a big welcome to the new followers - great to have you with us! And thank you all so much for spending some time here at Words and Pictures today. I look forward to seeing you again soon, either here or somewhere else in Craftland!
I'm entering this in the following:
That Craft Place who are having a Steampunk challenge this fortnight
Challenge 16 in the Studio L3 Compendium of Curiosities II challenge
Simon Says Stamp and Show still want to know "What do you say?"
And I'd also like to join in the Bloggers' Challenge Blog Hop for the first time - hosted by Lisa Somerville over at her wonderful blog Splendiferous Creations... For this one, we have to Alter It, and you can while away some wonderful hours travelling round to the crafty blogs below to see what everyone's produced - and/or join in yourself!
First, though, it's time for the quotes...
We are only puppets, our strings being pulled by unknown forces.
Master of puppets, I'm pulling your strings, twisting your mind, and smashing your dreams.
Metallica (look, it's even metallic here...!!)