Friday, September 30

Pencils, Pencils, Pencils...

If you've been following along in the last couple of weeks, you'll know that I've been reacquainting myself with my coloured pencils... well, that's not entirely true... it's more a case of being distracted by them while trying to clean up!

But I have evidence to show that I'm not the only one who has been playing with pencils, take a look at what Petra's up to. She's enjoying the last warm days of summer out on the patio with some images and her coloured pencils.

Petra colouring on her patio

Meanwhile, I've been experimenting with one of the "metallic" colours in my collection to see how it looks on paper. Although it's not overly shiny, it does have a metallic look that can be accentuated with a variation in the amount of pressure you apply. The lighter you press on the pencil, the shinier the highlight becomes.

This image is one of the clear stamps from the "Christmas Bells" set, available in store from tomorrow!

Tuesday, September 27

Digital Christmas

Your Christmas card making will be well and truly covered with these four digital sets that are due for release in just a few more days. My designers and I have been having a blast creating sample cards with these stamps, and we hope you'll be inspired by some of the projects we've put together.

Saturday, September 24

Christmas Bells

Here's a little sneak peek at what some of my designers have been doing with the soon-to-be-released "Christmas Bells" stamps.

Tuesday, September 20

From Start To Finish

When I'm designing stamps, I generally begin with a rough drawing in my sketch book, but as you can see, the finished image doesn't always turn out exactly like the initial design.

Pencils are a fabulous medium for card makers, you can get so many variations just by adjusting the pressure with which you apply the colour. I completed all these leaves with just three pencils - black, dark green and spring green (935, 908 & 913).

This image is one of the stamps from the "Christmas Bells" set, due for release on the 1st of October. I didn't colour the bell because I have other plans for it... but that's a card for another day!

Sunday, September 18

Coming Soon...

One of the new October releases at Beccy's Place is a digital set called "Build-A-Wreath". As the name implies, you can use all the different elements in the set to build wreaths for whatever occasion you wish. As a little bonus, the set also comes with these four pre-built and pre-coloured images to get you started.

These sneak peeks from my designers give you even more idea of the versatility of the "Build-A-Wreath" digital stamp set. All of the individual elements have been saved as .png files, which means they have a transparent background for clean and simple merging. That feature, combined with the ability for resizing and flipping, means there is an almost endless array of possible configurations you can discover.

In Store From October 1st

Friday, September 16

All The Greens...

I really love colouring foliage, particularly large, broad leaves that allow you to play around with lots of shadows and highlights. I find that adding black in the darkest areas really help to give depth to the overall image, while a touch of bright, yellow green gives the impression of new foliage or bright sunlight.

The images I'm using today are from my new clear range of photopolymer stamps, and this one is titled "Feathered Nest". You'll be able to find it in store from the 1st of October!

Sunday, September 11

One Monkey, Two Ways

I have four awesome nephews who love nothing more than a joke about something smelly, gross, or just plain ridiculous, so creating a couple of monkey cards for upcoming birthdays was a no-brainer!

For the first card, I printed the image at 8cm tall and coloured it with my Prismacolor pencils. I used one of the coordinating sentiments which reads "you look like a monkey, and you smell like one too".  It's sure to be a hit with my target audience.

To make the second card, I enlarged the pre-coloured image, printed and fussy cut around the head and shoulders and attached it to the card at a slight angle. The sentiment on this one reads "Smile like a monkey with a new banana". I'm pretty sure the boys are going to love these!

Friday, September 9

Yellow Roses

I was tidying my craft room a few days ago and came across a fabulous pad of patterned paper, primarily in shades of dark blue, but with a few touches of yellow here and there. Out came the yellow markers (which meant all my tidying was immediately undone!) and a printed version of the Wild Rose digital stamp.

I always find it tricky to get enough contrast when using yellow.  It's already a light colour and although it becomes richer, the variations with shadow and highlight aren't as wide as I would like. To compensate, I add some brown tones, which help to deepen and darken the shadow areas.

And here's the finished card I created with my coloured image and some of the fabulous patterned paper from the pad. Happily, there is still lots left so I'll be able to create more cards and projects with the same colour scheme. The only downside is that it's unlikely my craft room will ever be completely tidy! 

Wednesday, September 7

Tutorial - Star Fold Card

Several years ago, my friend Deirdre taught me how to make a fabulous star fold card. Although it's a little fiddly, and there's some math involved *gasp*, it really is a great fold and is sure to impress the most discerning recipient. This fold would be particularly great at Christmastime and could be easily adapted to hang from a tree as a combined card and ornament.

You need to start by cutting an equilateral triangle, which, if you'll cast your mind back to math class, you'll remember is a triangle with three equal sides. (Yep, I had to look it up!) You will probably have your own way of figuring out how to cut an equilateral triangle, but I've included my technique just in case you've never really given it much thought.

1. Start with a 12" x 12" sheet of card stock.

2.  Draw a vertical line down the centre.

3.  Place your ruler at the 12" mark on one of the corners.  Keeping the 12" mark on the corner of the card stock, move the ruler until the 0" mark is directly over the centre line.  Draw a line from the corner to the centre line.  Repeat for the other side.  You should now have an equilateral triangle with all three sides measuring 12" long.

4. Cut along the lines you marked so you end up with a triangle-shaped piece of card stock.

5.  Measure and mark the centre of each side of the triangle, which will be at 6".

6.  Use your ruler and pencil to draw lines between each mark.  And like magic (although my kids insist it's just simple math), you should now have another equilateral triangle inside the large one.

7. Now measure and mark 4" from each corner.

8.  Draw lines from mark to mark, parallel to the small triangle. Now score along all six lines that you drew.

9. Mountain fold the outer score lines and valley fold the inner ones, pressing firmly along each crease.

10. And that's pretty much it for the base of your card. It can be a little tricky folding it up, but it's basically like folding up a cardboard box where you tuck the last flap under the first.

11.  Decorate your star fold card with pieces of patterned paper. I used a large triangle for the centre, small triangles for the outer sections and strips with mitred ends for the middle. You'll also need to put pieces on the outside, centre sections that are visible when the card is folded.

12. Now you can add whatever embellishments, images and stamps you like. If you have elements that hang over creases, be careful not to glue the card closed. Also keep in mind that the card will fold out, changing the position of the items you've added, so you might want to check it before you secure it in place permanently.

And that's it, you're done.  I hope you enjoyed this tutorial, and an extra big thank you to my clever friend, Deirdre, for teaching me how to make these fabulous cards.


Monday, September 5

Did You Know...

I'm in the process of planning the very first
Beccy's Place monthly e-newsletter!
It will be full of sneak peeks, blog happenings, online store news and newsletter exclusives.  You can sign up to receive the newsletter by visiting my online store, scrolling right down to the bottom of the page and adding your name and email address in the fields under "Newsletter".

Sunday, September 4

Opening Weekend

Thank you to everyone who stopped by to check out the new store, it was great to see so much traffic during the weekend and I was very pleased to see so many people join in the scavenger hunt!  For those who are curious about which sets were going for just 10c each, here they all are:

A Light in the Darkness

The Three Tenors

Snowman Set

Shabby Chic Roses

Frog and Oleander

They'll stay at the 10c price for another 12 hours, to give everyone a chance to grab them during our opening weekend!