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So many things – the return of Mr Spiky, the patio, and more

Such a long title. Right now, I SHOULD be walking on the treadmill – the darn steroids I have to take to help suppress my immune system and keep the myositis at bay wreaks havoc with my blood sugars, as does the methotrexate I take for the same reason. My daily treadmill walk is essential to help counteract that. But I have failed in my scheduling of posts for a few days now, because I am working on many things. I don’t so much get creative blocks as I get overwhelmed with things that I want to do and I simply cannot settle on one of them. Or I am in the middle of something and indecisive about which direction to go with it. I am struggling with my cover for my double accordion book, but I may have cracked that. I have to make my ATC for the WOYWW swap cause I will be in the hospital for treatment the week of the swap and might not be feeling up to creating much. I still have to keep up with the 100 days, although I have the cushion I built in by making pages before posting them so I am still ahead a few days. AND the Hubster and I spent an intense few days in the dining room assembling some new patio furniture. That we didn’t kill each other is demonstration that when we put our minds to it we work well as a team. Next task is a good tidy of the garden, once the weather is better – maybe you can see the bricks that weigh down the other light-weight furniture in the back? It’s been miserable and so windy!

Because I was looking back in my blog for the WOYWW ATC backs and looking at past ATCs I have made, I also came across another project that I have made SO MANY TIMES cause I just love this guy. Mr Spiky got made for past WOYWW events, I made him for my daughters disability group, and I made one for my son with art from an album by Nujabes, an artist he likes.

I had been considering making a version using the Collage Collective – I love some of those papers SO much, and as they come in both a thin paper version and a thicker cardstock version, I thought I would give it a go and scratch that itch. I was a bit unsure about how best to do it so my first attempt was to stick the thinner paper to a thicker sheet of cardstock.

I think I forgot, with the passage of time, that thinner paper actually allows for a less sturdy but more precise figure. He isn’t bad, but things like the gently curved ears are tricky at best and bloody hard going at worst!

The ears on the Nujabes one are very smooth. I must make more to get it right, I think. This guy was printed on A3 paper so he is about 7 inches tall, where the originals were more like 4 inches tall.

Just adding my 100 Days then off for an indoor walk! Kinda an odd one – I used two scraps that already had holes cut in them and a weird assortment of greens.


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When things are not going as planned…

I have been working on two, no THREE, projects, all at various stages of doneness, and struggling. The prime one that I have been working on is constructed, but I fear I am falling into a rut with my arty details and am trying to break out of that rut. And it is NOT going to plan. I may need to take a little break and set it aside to work on another on of the three and see where it leads.

But not one to sit and ponder, I find the best jump-start is to do something tried and true. I was sitting at my desk and casting my eyes about my craft space and those eyes fell upon a stack of the little punch-out 3D sculptures that I love making. I had two of the set that I had not yet assembled (a bull’s head and an antelope) so I decided to make one of them using the gloss sprays to decorate it.

Of all the heads I have made, this one was the easiest to decorate! Just a quick spray (or five) with a variety of the gloss sprays, then a bit of drying time, a flip, a splatter and … DONE!

The assembly was quick as well

I knew I wanted the slice that contained the horns to stand out, so I made the plaque it sits on and the horn-slice in shade of yellow and cheddar, with some white splatters.

And the paper that lines my spray-box (cause those gloss sprays go EVERYWHERE) turned out pretty as well

I really love the lines from the punch-outs, although I might leave them in place next time and see if there is a good way to use them once they are coloured with the spray – I feel I missed an oppourtunity there! Here is a (slightly wonky) shot of the completed head

And the little trio one the door:

It is a tricky location, especially now there is a bookshelf in the way of any natural light but you get the idea! I said I had only the antelope left to do but I think there is another one, maybe a… bear? not sure, and I think I just have to find it. Having done the deer using Gel prints and the elephant using that gorgeous Bombay Sapphire tissue paper, and now the bull with gloss sprays, I need to do the next one with something different. But WHAT?!

Day 71 – another that I quite like.


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Yet another Art House

Long-time readers of this blog will know that I love 3D structures. And one of my favourite things is the folded houses from a long out of print book. I have made a few (Zombie Town, a steampunk version and the Teesha Moore version are two of them) and love them all.

I wanted to make a Dina-house, unofficially dubbed The House that Dina Built LOL! It really came together quite easily.

I once again have an A3 printer, so scanning the houses and printing them on heavy A3 sized card made the whole process a breeze – far better than trying to scan and print pieces and put them together OR measuring and marking the lines then cutting.

The flat template cleverly folds up into a house like so:

How to decorate it? The obvious choice for colouring was gloss spray. OMG. It turned out so pretty I hated to cover it up at all.

They really are magical, those sprays. If you look up to the folded house you can just about see the black lines inside – I extended the cut lines so the house was taller and needed to cover that up. I could have sprayed inside but so little of that would be on show it seemed a waste, so instead I covered the back with kraft paper. The added extra strength to it as well. And the kraft sets off the sprayed colour and the stark white of the stamped imaged so well.

I had my quote – where probably 90% of my projects begin – and found once again the stamps from the Be Willing Dina set gave me 100% of the letters I needed, and this time in the same size blocks, to complete the quote!

And from there it was just stamping and cutting and sticking. I love the stark B&W images on the colourful house!

This was another option for the main quote but I prefer the Da Vinci one:

So there you have it. Another fun project. I have to turn my head towards ATCs. I now have both a swap and the WOYWW 12th anniversary trade to consider.

Day 64 – I will say it is dragging a little now. I am trying to experiment with placement a bit to keep things fresh! But not totally happy with this one. I am celebrating the news my daughter has been awarded an additional year of education, a big WIN, so what is behind the page is what I am happy about!

Today is my second Covid jab so I am thinking I will be taking another weekend a bit easy – everyone says jab 2 comes with more side effects so making the decision to give myself a break in advance takes any pressure off. I will be doing my 100 days pages at the very least, but no promises of anything else!


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Two days in a row?? Elephant, Blogger and Books

It seems like it’s been ages since I managed to blog two days in a row.  Awaiting the plumber so I thought I might as well.

First, let me wrap up WOYWW stuff. Here is the elephant, finished.  I had to pop to Lidl yesterday afternoon and mine still has plenty of these kits available and they have dropped the price to under £2.  I picked up one I previously passed on, a rhino.

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I am super happy with how he turned out.  You can;t see but the tusks are coated with Rock Candy stickles.

I am happy to be trying WOYWW again but there seems to be a problem – is it me or is it everyone or maybe just WordPress commenters? I commented o a number of blogs yesterday and still am not seeing comments from me posted.  Blogger labelled blogs seem to be ok, the ones that ask me to tick from a selection to verify I am not a robot.  But Blogspot labelled ones don’t seem to work.  I get a weird error screen:

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How wrong is it that the problem is with Blogger and yet they want me to clear MY cache, and deal with all the problems that creates.  Harumpf. It feels like the equivalent of the IT Crowd folk saying Have you tried switching it off and then on again? 

Lastly, I am still sending out loads of book folding patterns by request.  One of them, requested and folded by Bette, won a prize at her local fair!

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Apparently it won First Prize and a special ribbon.  All down to her folding and not the template – her two-line fold looks way better than mine!  Nice job Bette and thanks for sharing.


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WOYWW 385 – long time, no see!

Happy WOYWW day!  Oh it has been so long!  I drastically underestimated the impact of

  • the move to a new house that needs a lot of work
  • the move to a new county and the impact on DDs SEN status
  • dealing with the ridiculous amount of stuff left by DS after he moved to California
  • getting my ridiculous amount of craft stuff organized

I haven’t managed WOYWW for AGES – every time I think maybe THIS week I can do it, SOMETHING comes up and I end up being tied up with contractors or needing to be away for the day and therefore unable to take part. And I won’t take part unless I KNOW I can at least return visits.

But I do actually have something on my desk this week and I am home awaiting a couple of deliveries and a pick up for return, and only have to pop out to collect a prescription at the pharmacy.  I may get a text from the plumber (almost all the downstairs radiators fail to heat up at all) but that is about it.  Seems a good week to take the plunge.

Remember this?

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and my Gelli print version? It is a post or so back.

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Well, I did wind up buying a stack of the kits from Lidl and in tidying up I came across some lovely tissue paper from our trip to the Bombay Sapphire distillery:

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So I have been covering the bits of an elephant with the tissue paper

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and misting the centre brace pieces with Glimmer Mist

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The nice thing about tissue paper is that you don’t need to X-acto knife around the pieces, just scrub along the edges with an emery board or nail file.  And the emery board fits inside the tricky slots to make it super easy to remove the tissue paper from them.

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It just needs some ink dusted on the edges and it can join the deer head.  I still have a rams head and a bull’s head (maybe a rhino too, the only one I am sure I didn’t buy is the bear!) but am not sure what other technique I might bring to it.  I did consider doodling on the white pieces but I’m not that good at it, to be honest.  And the mountain of scrapbooking paper I have on hand would make that an obvious choice, but maybe too obvious.  I might go for stamping with my Teesha/Zetti stamps but I’m just not sure how visible they will be once the piece is assembled.  Time will tell…

So have a wonderful WOYWW day and I will hope to manage a few visits before it all goes pear-shaped.

Pessimistic? Me? Nahhhh…..


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Another cut&fold with photo

I am continuing to experiment with the cut&fold method and using my lined templates. I am still struggling with the proportions a little.  For example, I designed this one:

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but after creating it, the proportion of the fingers isn’t quite right, although the circle did end up as a circle, which is what I was more worried about. I like it, I just wish the pointer fingers were a bit more elongated!

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They should be MUCH longer than the thumbs, not just a bit.  Funny, I was afraid they would end up TOO long. I should learn to trust my instincts more LOL!

I am still waiting for a reply from the Bookami people regarding the Mac version but I may have to go ahead and order it anyway.  I am quite interested to see how it works compared to the lined template version.

Oh and just in case the finger length is OK to your eye (maybe you have stubby fingers ….) then you can download the lined template here. I may still go back and stretch that pointer a bit more, and if I do I’ll add that version here.

I think I prefer the books with photos added, like this and the heart and the photo strip one to the ones that just have flowers added.  I have a couple of ideas for finishing off this one, just wonder it is it worth doing….

 


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Another share of books

Oh dear.  Just after visiting the Make It! show I threw my back out, trying to clamber out of my friend’s low slung car.  It was bad.  The worst episode ever.  I spent the first 3 days basically taking a strong painkiller, sleeping for 4-6 hours, then taking another painkiller, sleeping, repeat.  Bu day 4 I could just about hobble, and today is the first day I have been able to sit at my desk AT ALL.  So if you requested a template and I’ve not gotten back to you, so sorry.  I will work thru any emails I have as soon as I can.

Just a couple of shares:

Bette did this one for her sister, who loved it.  I love it too!

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Dee did two, both styles.  First, the folded version:

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That swoopy L looks fab! and then a cut&fold version of the paw print:

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Perfect for a dog lover.  I think, with a little effort, you could easily pop a small photo of the dog into the larger paw pad area for a super cute gift.

I have to take it a bit easy for a little longer, so bear with me.  But keep sharing your work – I LOVE seeing what people have done.


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Folded ME!

LOL!  Long time readers might recall when I made my passport photo into a stencil

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and then when I carved the image and made me a stamp instead

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So it will come as no surprise that I folded me as a cut&fold book LOL!

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This image was not one I could fill with lines (or at least not as easily as I normally would do for a template) so I used the trick of printing the image over my sheet of lines to create the template

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Kinda makes me laugh as the book is entitled Good Wives (sequel to Little Women actually, another reason to laugh, if you know me) and yes, the project is a little useless, but it was an experiment.  I had the idea that it might be fun to do the kids but I need a couple of good photos for that and they have gone all camera-shy on me.  I had already converted my photo to the right sort of B&W, blocks of colour image and the book was the exact right size (literally 2 pages left either side) so I just did it.

I also did my trick of folding the usual alternating edges deeper, the folding the edges of the page to be cut to just overlap those and I think it makes a nice, substantial, cut&fold book

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I have also been playing with flowers some more, for book folding decorations.  I’ll have to share them on another day….


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Flowers, for a change

I have been so lax in my blogging, sorry about that.  Life has been busy.

I had a discussion with some book fold-ers who like adorning their book fold projects with kusudama flowers  – the ones like THIS:

and shared an easier version that still looks quite nice.  It has only four petals, usually and looks like this:

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The steps are so simple, much easier than the standard version.

Fold a square on the diagonal, then bring the lower corners up to meet the point.

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Open up the folds and fold the sides in to meet the crease

Flip it over and fold down the points, then unfold them

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Stick the unit together where the arrows point to, like this:

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I like to use Fabri-tac glue – hot glue or some other strong, quick-set glue works best, rather than a tape runner or double-sided tape.  Stick the units together into a flower shape

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As shown, you can do four or five units as you prefer.  You can leave the little points as they are or fold them over flat or open them out to make the “rabbit ear” inner petals.

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and you can even fold five units and join them for one that looks like THIS:

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Long time reader know me – I am all about the easy LOL!  I had a look and there is a video that might help:

You might be able to use the same principle to make a flower ball, using the simple version, but I can’t say that I’ve done it myself.  YMMV.


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Multi-line folding!

I made a multi-line folding alphabet, using the most popular font (and am working on a more plain version) but am nor quite to the final sharing point.  I have been super busy, and it is half-term week for DD this week, so it is all taking longer than I hoped.  MAKING it was a piece of cake, but composing a blog post to explain it all is a different matter. And I pre-stretched the letters so you can see the fold in proportion, just using the black lines.

Here are a couple of (flawed) samples.  Long time readers know my private subtitle for this blog is I make the mistakes so you don’t have to! and these show that pretty well.

First, I unfolded an old sample (a paperback) to test out a pattern:

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Pretty good, but I mis-calculated the start page.  and I kept trying different things for the extra side pages where the words were shorter.  Still, not a bad first effort.

Then I worked out the right start pages and a side-fold for the extra bits that I liked well enough, but for the cutting into sections, I TOTALLY ballsed that up.  I know what I did – I didn’t mark the CUT LINE from the PATTERN, I marked the cutting line from the previous cut.  Than mean that if I didn’t have the previous page well place, every new mark was just that little bit off.  It went up and down like a mountain range!

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I tried to sort it by cutting away a bigger gap but it still wasn’t right. The second cutting line was better, nearly perfectly straight, even if it seems less s in the photo.

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And overall?

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I am certain I can mask the wonky first cut with some ribbon across the divide, and I wish I had carried on with the original plan of making Lots with a capital L, making the first and last line virtually the same length, so the side folds were only in the middle section. But as a test to see how it works, I learned a lot.

So, once I can take the time to explain how to use it, this is what the PDF looks like. Sorry, still not willing to do the counting, but I can better explain why! You can see the s, for example.  If your book was right on the edge of having enough pages, can you see how it would be very easy to omit the 10 folds at the end and make it 47 folds, rather than 57?

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You can make note of that on the count page for future reference.  And maybe you can also see where some breaks are SO CLOSE together, they COUD be counted as a single fold instead of two?  the end of the s and its tail in the above sample? That sort of thing is personal preference and specific to the folder and the book she uses.

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Your count sheet will be specific to you.  Plus I still don’t want to give a wrong count and ruin someone’s work {wink}

This is what the PDF will look like

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I added numbers and some special symbols as well.  Watch for it in the next day or so – I just need to carve out a little bit more time to finish up!