Hello everyone. If you haven't heard the wonderful news that Calico Craft Parts are back... well, where have you been?! Although I'll always miss Calico Crafts as it was, I'm thrilled that the Craft Parts have arisen from the ashes to live again. I've been celebrating the wonderful news by sharing some of my Calico Crafts Design Team pieces which used the Craft Parts.
If you're tempted to play with any of these great wood and MDF laser-cut designs, click on the links and you can head straight to the brand new website and start shopping!
I'm adding this altered book box to my crafty scrapbook here at Words and Pictures today but, as always, if you saw this post over at Calico Crafts the last time round, please don't feel you have to comment again.
So, on the outside of the chipboard book (the large one of the Chipboard Book Box Set - so it's 22.5 x 18 x 6cm) I played with lots of layers of paint and texture.
I knew from the start that I wanted to use the large Wildflower Corner Flourish (knowing what's inside, I know it will complement what's there!). It's already so beautiful that I did very little to alter it.
There are lots of different Corner Wood Shapes available, and they all come in various sizes, so there's bound to be something perfect for your project.
I just gave it a coat of the DecoArt One-Step Crackle, and once that had worked its magic, I inked it with dark brown ink to highlight those fabulous crackles.
I put some DecoArt Decorating Paste through a stencil from my stash which seemed to work well with the Wildflower Corner, and once that had set, I started adding my layers of paint.
I can't say for sure what colours are involved... I'm pretty sure Warm White, Driftwood, and Raw Umber were in the mix, built up in layers and washes, knocked back and dry-brushed until I was happy with the look.
I thought it would be nice to have a cobwebby look across the "ancient tome", so I pressed the Kaisercraft Crackle Texture stamp into action.
It's stamped in Coffee Archival and then clear-embossed so that there's a dewy shimmer as it catches the light.
I stamped "les fleurs" onto the smallest size of Plaque Shape 1, painted with more DecoArt Americana Acrylics, and I added some flourish stamping before giving that a coat of the One-Step Crackle too.
Again, there are many different Birch Plywood Plaques, all in lots of sizes.
On the spine I added a label using one of my favourite Tim Holtz sentiments: In dreams we catch glimpses of life larger than our own.
And around the edges, there's another Kaisercraft stamp on duty, this time the Woodgrain, which I thought made rather good "pages"!
So, we come to the inside, and some of my absolute favourites of the Calico Craft Parts lines... these gorgeous Wild Grass Shapes.
They've had the same treatment as the Wildflower corner on the cover, with crackle and stain.
I love that the gloss of the crackle intensifies the colour and darkened edges of the laser-cuts, as well as giving a gorgeous shimmer in the sunlight.
For the background I used a natural sponge to add another bunch of DecoArt Americana colours - Indian Turquoise, Spa Blue, Hauser Light Green and Citron Green - so that you travel up the page from grasses to sky.
For some extra detail, I stamped some lovely TH text in WhiteWash, and did some additional script stamping as well as some inking using toning inks through the Tando warped honeycomb mask.
Here you can see the stages of adding the crackle to the meadowgrasses, from left to right - the "raw" shape, easily beautiful enough to use as it is, then with a coat of One-Step Crackle, and finally with the inking to intensify the look of the crackles.
I've used several different grasses: Wild Grass Shape 3 gets its own spotlight inside the front cover...
... while Wild Grass Shape 2, Wild Grass Shape 4 and the Bulrush Grass Shape 8 are all inside the box.
To create the dimensional depth between the flowers I deployed a couple of those incredibly useful little sponges that come as part of the packaging when you buy TH embossing folders.
I cut them to the size I wanted, and gave them a coat of paint too, so that if you catch sight of them it won't look too out of place. They gave me both the ability to create the dimension and some stability for gluing the stems in place.
Around the bottom I added some lovely Icelandic Moss, a mixture of light and dark green, I think.
The quote is by Ralph Waldo Emerson and bobbed up on a Google search. It seemed to work well with my beloved meadow grasses: many eyes go through the meadow, but few see the flowers.
It's stamped according to my usual habit, in multiple ink colours, and inked to echo the sponged paint in the background from grass below to sky above.
So there you go. As you'll have noticed, this wasn't the easiest thing to photograph, but I hope you get the idea.
Thanks so much for stopping by today. I hope you've been enjoying re-visiting some of these Calico Crafts projects this week (check out the Garden Tray and Woodcuts ATC if you missed them) but - as I've said - there's no need to re-comment too!
There are more to come over the next days and weeks, and I hope somewhere along the line you'll be tempted over to the new Calico Craft Parts website to see the delights awaiting you there.
Happy Crafting all!
The moment one gives close attention to anything, even a blade of grass, it becomes a mysterious, awesome, indescribably magnificent world in itself.