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Friday 10 January 2020

A Winter's Night

Hello all, and welcome.  It's another grey, damp day here as I write this, and it's not even chilly, so I'm having to get my fix of proper winter weather via the craft table.

I've been playing with the brand new Curio Box just released by Tim Holtz.  I couldn't resist it.  I can see it being useful in all sorts of ways.

Given it's brand new, it fits in well with the Something New theme at the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge.

And the Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog are playing a Tic Tac Toe challenge so I chose to play the line across the top to fill up my shadow box - Layers, Winter, Heat Embossing.

Unfortunately, I'd already been experimenting with the Curio Box die before I decided what was going inside.  I tried it out with some Idea-ology papers - working out which side of the paper the creases for the folds would turn up so that I could get the side of the paper I wanted either on the inner box or the outer frame.

The die comes with a number of Thinlits frames so that you can cut different apertures for the opening of the shadow box.  This is the largest of the apertures.  There's a smaller one also this shape, and a couple of ovals which will give the shadow box a very different look.

When it turned out I needed to add some layers for my night sky, I had to snip open the tissue tape fastening the inner box together so that I could lay it out flat again for the paint sponging...

... and then the star-stencilling.  Next time, I'll work out what I'm doing before building the box!

The night sky is sponged in PaperArtsy Fresco Blueberry, and the snowy landscape in Snowflake (of course).  And the star stencil is one of Tim Holtz's.

I sponged some more Snowflake through the stencil and applied some ancient Ranger Silver Pearl powder which was hiding in my stash.

It has a lovely shimmer to it - just right for starlight.  And the top layer is, of course, a spattering of snowy white paint droplets.

I cut one of the houses and a couple of trees from the Thinlits Ghost Town set (also new to me - picked up at a bargain price) from the same paper as the outer box frame.  But I then gave the trees a coat of my favourite Wow Primary Bark embossing powder to darken their silhouettes.

This is the house with the reverse side of the paper showing, but my camera seems to have decided I didn't need the photos I took of the before and after with the trees.  It does that annoyingly often at the moment.  Hopefully I just need a new SD card rather than a whole new camera.

I glued the house down onto some plain card - right way up this time - and added some Antique Linen Distress Ink to the windows with a water brush, to give the illusion of warm glowing lights within.

I then had great fun adding snow to the roof and windowsills with some heavy body white acrylic paint.  I'm very happy with the dimension of those heaps of snow!

This fence is part of a set intended for a Christmas model village.  I spotted them on sale and I thought they looked useful!

Of course, I had to do a bit of weathering... PaperArtsy Crackle Glaze to create my flaky paint, and in the long run a bit of extra Pumice Stone shading and "dirt".

It was easy to cut the railings with scissors so that I could put a couple of posts the other side of the frame, creating a gateway to walk through.

The Paper Doll was a slight afterthought... the scene still needed a little something even with all that lovely snowy texture around.  I think she's exactly right standing just inside the gate there.

She seems to have trodden in a pretty deep snowdrift (a.k.a. a mound of White-tac - same as Blu-tac only white!

I also added extra heavy body white acrylic to the mound, to blend it into the ground.

There's plenty of snowy splatter...

... both inside and out.

And I used the cut-out from the frame to add a little interest to the back of the box.  It's not that anyone's likely to be looking at that side, but you never know.

It was, yet again, a tricky photographic job.  The shadow box casts shadows - of course! - so from some angles the sky looks really dark...

... but then from others, with a slight tilt, you can get a much better look at that lovely Blueberry blue and the twinkling stars.

You simply can't catch all the angles at once!

Nonetheless, I hope you've enjoyed stepping into the winter night garden with me - and I hope you are wrapped up warm and snug like the little girl.

Thanks so much for stopping by today, and I'll see you again soon.

Snow was falling,
so much like stars
filling the dark trees
that one could easily imagine
its reason for being was nothing more
than prettiness.
Mary Oliver

I'd like to play along at the Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog where the challenge is Let's Play Tic Tac Toe - and I'm playing the top line across... Layers, Winter, Heat Embossing
At the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge they want to see Something New


Anke said...

WOW WOW WOW Alison this is so beautiful, I love it.


Amanda said...

The wintery scene you’ve created in the curio box is fabulous, I didn’t think I needed this die, but I’m wavering. Great piece
Amanda x

Annie said...

A fabulous winter scene within the curio die Alison xx Love the snowy sky and stars x The snow on the roof, house and garden look amazing as does the ageing of the picket fence xx The little girl looks perfect as she heads out in to the night xx
Love it xx

Hugs Annie xx

Diana Taylor said...

Oh Alison, this is absolutely stunning - I love what you've done with this new die. I ordered it a couple of days ago and am hoping it might arrive today with any luck - you've just added to my anticipation now! As always your attention to detail is second to none - it really is a little piece of perfection.
Happy New Year to you,
Diana xx

ann barnes said...

This is wonderful! The curio box die is on my list to get my hands on. I love your snowy creation.

My name is Erika. said...

I've looked at this die as I agree it could be useful. I love this winter scene you've created in yours. The stars really caught my eye. So pretty. Happy weekend. Hugs-Erika

hazel said...

A beautiful winter scene Alison, it’s stunning.
xxx Hazel.

Sherry Hickey said...

Your curio box is fantastic; I love every detail and thanks for sharing your process in words and pics!!

Dorthe said...

Oh my ! Alison you are phenomenal dear, it really is a masterpiece of how it looked when I was a child, and with snow all over , lol- yes I`m sure we had more snow, than we have now ....
Your little cottage in the garden behind the fence and the sweet girl, just so happy in the high snow, everything is so cosy and adorable .
On another note, I had an e-mail from you with a link I did not open--- I guess it was not from you, or you are having unwelcome guests ??? Hugs Dorthe

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

Don't you just hate it when the box is smarter than you? I know you won't make the same mistake twice, but I'm glad you showed us what not to do, even though I'll never be able to own that die.

You did an excellent job. Of particular note is the fence. That was brilliant, both in aging it and using part of it on both sides of the pathway. Simply brilliant. The idea of a white picket fence is one we (the collective we, not me personally) in the states used to believe was the ultimate dream. I think that was from the late 40s and early 50s. Brilliant and beautiful. Well done, too.

Meggymay said...

A gorgeous project Alison, I hope it will be a while before we get proper snow. The snow effects you created look lovely.
Yvonne xx

Margaret Mifsud said...

Wowsers! This is a positively stunning piece Alison! Love the night sky with the twinkling stars and the snowy textures are amazing! I so love small dioramas and this one is awesome!! hugs xx

suzyb said...

Just an amazing piece Alison. You just nailed it yet again. The skies, the house, the snow, the fence and the little girl just made it perfect. Really love this piece!!!!

Craftyfield said...

I took a long hard look at the curio box die myself… I haven't bought it in the end as I can't think where to store the many boxes I would need to make for a decent return on my investment! But what a delightful scene you created, Alison!

Suzanne C said...

Alison this is just a beautiful vignette with a lovely wintry scene! I adore the starry night you created inside and that it runs over the top! Thanks for sharing with us in the Tic Tac Toe Challenge at the Funkie Junkie Boutique!

Cec said...

What a fabulous winter vignette. You have added such lovely texture and the perspective is spot on. Thanks for joining us at The Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog.

Redanne said...

You really have created a stunning winter scene in the fabulous new curio box Alison - it is a good job she is wrapped up warmly! The sky is so beautiful and I just love the little fence. You have made me want to crack open my die and use it now! Anne xxx

Rita said...

Happy New Year Alison. Well I said I was not buying anymore dies but after seeing your post I may have to change my mind. It really is stunning. Hugs Rita xxx

Mrs.B said...

This is fabulous, I love the little night time wintry scene with the sparkly stars and lots of snow for this little girl to play in. Makes me feel chilly just looking at it.
Avril xx

Chrissy said...

FABulous snowy cold project Alison, I love the snow and texture, the wonderful snowflake filled sky and that little girl did just finish it all off..the house is fabulous and very curious to what the finished size of this whole project is?
I am altering a chocolate box at the moment and in that now what stage?..
And thank you for your concern on my blog comments over my fire safety, but I am in another country..New Zealand..


Words and Pictures said...

Ah, well you should be safe there, Chrissy - apologies... clearly my brain is rusty after the Christmas break!

craftytrog said...

A beautiful wintry scene Alison! xx

Felix the Crafty Cat said...

This is a great scene and a lovely way to use this die. I could adapt this slightly and make a memory box of our time away skiing, might give it a thought. Thanks for the inspiration. Happy creative week, Angela xxx

Sue said...

Wow this is amazing Alison! I've not seen these dies, but I love what you've done with them. The snowy sky is perfect, as are all the other additions. I really like that the trees go round the corners. Have a very happy and creative week, Sue xx

Cocofolies said...

Fantastic shadow box Alison!!!
I love this winter scene, adorable! A great and clever use of the Halloween trees and houses thinlits... as well as this recycled fence, beautifully painted and used.
Gorgeous composition and details as usual!
A comforting post to read and look at quietly, thank you, as I have my arm broken... bad start of the year for me :(
Hugs, Coco xx

Gio said...

Ohmy this scenery is so delightful and lovely even if it so winterish (not my favourite season). The little lady is the perfect addition, and those stars create such a magical feeling. Really gorgeous, Alison.

Dortesjs said...

whauuu its gorgeous, much in love

Let's Art Journal said...

Alex that's one stunning winter scene! I love how it all came together and I bet adding the snow was lots of fun - it looks amazing 😀. The weathered fencing was a lovely touch too, so beautiful! Thanks for the inspiration and sending you happy and creative wishes! Hugs, Jo x

sarascloset said...

Oh, my heavens, Alison! You have really wowed me with this curio wintry scene! I've been seeing it in the gallery at TFJB blog, and was waiting for a little extra time to visit, so I could soak up all the details and leave a proper comment. That painty layered background is so lovely, I can almost hear the hush of the gently falling flakes. How clever to use the Halloween die cuts to build your scene (I've thought of that often, because I like my dies to be used year round, just haven't had the right project.) and putting the girl in there gives this the human element that completes this wonderful scene. The weathered picket fence is just brilliant and your 'snow' looks like it fell from the sky! I'm so in love with this delightful diorama, Alison; you have knocked it out of the creative ballpark! And I'm so thankful you shared it with us at The Funkie Junkie Boutique blog, too! Happy New Year!

Neet said...

Ooh, I love your silver starry sky and this box is just WOW, it's amazing and i am sure from what you say about the die you will get lots of use from it. Bet I would get in a muddle working out which side of the paper to use where but I love how you used yours.
The house and trees are great and I love the fencing. I was wondering how you got it to be so dimensional until I read about it - what a lucky buy and how good does it look now with the additions you made to it. Similarly the snow is fabulous and I cannot get over the fact that you used white tack for her to stand on/in. Clever!
As whatever angle you took a photo from it looks great - a fabulous make again dear Alison.
Hugs, Neet xx
ps art journal journey have 'new' as the theme too

Neet said...

Blog post up at last re Australia. Not entirely satisfied with it as I kept losing links and then links kept changing or being taken down, lost most of my pictures too but did my best in what ended up as a short time. It has been hanging about over a week now it was time.
Hugs, Neet xx

Ina G said...

I have come here umteen times to look at what is the most amazing winter scene I have ever seen. You always give us such details of how you create your projects. You really topped it off here with that girl knee deep in snow. Have never heard or seen white tac. This really is a 'masterpiece' Alison. Love it!

Patty O'Malley said...

This is fabulous, Alison! I love winter scenes!

Mary Elizabeth said...

MUST ... GET ... THIS ... DIE! Love what you did with it. Oh my goodness. By now, the flurries outside have stopped and they have melted. It makes me want to go create a snow scene of my own. I am in awe of how you repurposed the Halloween set. Perfect here. And what you did with the heavy body white acrylic paint is nothing short of magic. I can't believe how much it looks like piled snow. Love the fencing. And as always, it looks like your paper doll just walked into the world you that you created. Gorgeous! -- ME

Marci said...


Etsuko said...

This is magical winter wonderland Alison!! Really she looks very happy in this world. Thank you for always fabulous explanation. I love this 'A Winter's Night'. xx