Thursday, 8 January 2015

Fresh Beginnings. . . . .

Good morning everyone. Today sees the first challenge of 2015 for the Artist Trading Post Exchange. Our host for this fortnight is the hugely talented Sue Carrington. Here's Sue's challenge:

'Now that the festive season is over and thoughts turn to what lies ahead in the New Year, take a look through your craft supplies and share with us a new product/technique/ or even a new item to alter ! Remember we are a Mixed Media challenge and and stamping must be included, but no digi images.
I decided to make a project using my new Faber Castell Gelatos. I've wanted to try these for ages so I watched all the videos I could find and then set myself the challenge of using them in a simple way first to get the hang of them. I thought I would then go on and be more adventurous but I couldn't stop once I'd started and my practice piece of card (along with some other bits and pieces!) turned into this:

All the background colour has been done using gelatos. A little Distress ink and archival ink for stamping was also used. If we have a holiday, we usually start talking about it in the New Year so this tag also represents a new start to the year, planning a holiday and using a new product.

As I was only playing, I don't have a photo of the finished background piece but here's the scrap which was left after cutting the tag. I wasn't convinced at this stage but it was fun so I carried on! The gelatos are just scribbled onto the card then misted with water and blended with a finger.
I removed quite a large amount of gelato and I still wasn't sure! The images are all  stamped in Archival. The white areas are achieved by placing a stencil on the dry gelato background and using a baby wipe to gently remove some of the colour.
Another piece of card was coloured using the same gelatos and some Tattered Florals were die cut. Some edges have been muddied with Distress ink and some gold mica spray was spritzed randomly on the finished flower. You can just see some curly rusty wire which I had to add - can't do without the stuff!
For the bottom of the tag I used some Stampers Anonymous stamps on the scrap card and cut them to fit. The edges were finished with black Archival ink. Some Tim trim has been used around the lower part of the tag and is then finished with some twine and wooden beads.
I was shocked to remember that I've had these beads hanging around since before my daughter was born so over 22 years! Talk about hoarding!
The top of the tag is finished with the same Tim trim and twine.
You may remember from an earlier image that the gelato background had a fair amount of white on it. I used Distress ink in Mustard Seed to tone this down and marry the colours together more. It's also not clear in this image but the whole tag was given two coats of clear embossing powder. I didn't want to use a glaze just in case the action of painting on moved the gelato colour around.
I took a line from the Nina Simone song 'Feeling Good' as my sentiment because that's how the start of the New Year always makes me feel. Click HERE if you'd like to listen to Nina sing this wonderful song.
The sentiment has been made using Tim Chit Chat stickers onto scraps of the gelato background.
Thought I'd take a picture of the items I used to make the tag (white card too). I could have used Utee but sometimes I find it affects what's underneath and I wasn't sure how it would react with the gelatos so I stuck to the fine EP shown here. The Tattered Florals are cut from Watercolour paper (heavyweight) and I have to say that the gelatos worked beautifully on this substrate.
Isn't it amazing what you can do with four gelato sticks? I haven't got a big set and I still need to play more but they are certainly great for making backgrounds.

If you go over to the Artist Trading Post Exchange, you can have a look at all the wonderful inspiration from the rest of the team. Just click HERE.

Remember that the overall winner (chosen by the dt) will win a voucher for £10 from the Artist Trading Post - good excuse to enter! You could also be chosen as one of our Top 3 so what are you waiting for? Really excited to see what you come up with!

Please do remember to pop back to the Artist Trading Post on the 24th January when our winners for this challenge will be announced.


  1. Loving seeing what is achievable with gelatos - so tempted! As ever you layer and trim so beautifully. Happy New Year. Jenny x

  2. This is an eyecatching tag Julia! Love the stamping combinations, the colours the flowers, the details...hmzz
    like the tag a lot :-)
    Greetings, Alie

  3. Fantastic background, love the barbed wire stamp very much and the flower is sensational. A stunning Tag :-) xxx

  4. I love these bright and warm colours, perfect in these grey times... Beautiful tag!

  5. Stunning Julia and great use of those Gelatos!! Love how you put this together, - the flower looks amazing!

    Sorry I have not been around much lately, but I have been away from home with very little time on the internet. Back home now, so hoping to catch up. Belated Happy New Year to you and yours!!

  6. Fabulous colours and an awesome tag. The flowers sets you thinking of warmer days.
    Yvonne x

  7. They do make fabulous backgrounds don't they, they seem to have such a vibrancy about them. This is a beautiful tag Julia, gorgeous flower and stamping. FAB! Ruth x

  8. Gorgeously bold colours! I love the background you created and then to add that beautiful bloom. WOW, this is a tag to view on a dreary January evening.

  9. A wonderful tag Julia, the colours are fabulous.
    Happy New Year.
    xxx Hazel.

  10. Julia! Those colors are shockingly gorgeous!! I love your tag- what a creative way to bring in the new year! xo

  11. A wonderful tag in smashing colors.

  12. Decidedly beautiful Julia, I still haven't taken the plunge with these but you sure are tempting me. Happy New Year and huge hugs. xxx

  13. Fantastic tag, love your vibrant colours, gelatos are great aren't they and sooooo easy to use and they blend together perfectly xxx

  14. Fantastic Missus! I need to get my Gelatos out for a play! xox

  15. Love the fabulous details Julia the colour is so vibrant and fresh. Great stamping and the floral is perfect I have never used Gelato's must give them a try.

    TFS and crafty hugs
    Annie x
    Annie x

  16. Oh Julia, I have a set of these Gelatos and have been frightened to use them in case I make a mess - I love what you have done with them! The colours are simply gorgeous and your flower is absolutely divine! Hugs, Anne xx

  17. Gorgeous tag Julia! Love the colours and your flower is stunning! Fabulous start with your Gekatos! Sue C x

  18. Love your colour explosion, Julia!
    And your flowers are always fantastic!

    Claudia xxx

  19. Hi Julia, just wanted to say how much I love your tag before we're onto the next challenge! Gorgeous colours and that lovely big flower is stunning, I'm looking forward to getting some Gelatos, they look so vibrant ! X

  20. Stunning colours, Julia, and fabulous zingy stamping too - there's such life and energy in this tag - I absolutely love it!
    Alison xx


Thank you so much for taking the time to comment. Juliax