This week’s lesson (Imperfect/Perfection) was presented by Athanasia Papantoniou, from Greece. Athanasia’s page included chipboard letters randomly placed in the center with another chipboard word, Perfection. She made a tag with the letters “IM” and placed it near Perfection to indicate IM Perfection. You can read that as I Am Perfection or Imperfection.
Step 1. We started by priming two pages, one with white gesso, the other with black gesso.
Athanasia keeps white space around the perimeter of her pages and since this was going to be a 3D page, I left a margin toward the center of my journal.
Step 2. Add torn pages and stamp/emboss your own stickers. I’m still experimenting with making my own acrylic misters and covered up most of the stamping/embossing–used them anyway. Stamp the page, including some lines for journaling. Use a permanent stamp pad. It’s on my list of supplies.
Step 3. Add your stencil, using light modeling paste. Let dry (and dry and dry). I used my heat gun but finally let it dry overnight.
Step 4. Paint your chipboard letters in white and place them down the center. Not having letters, I used some wooden shapes, painted them white and glued them down with white glue. I weighted down the page at this point.
Step 5. Make dots of white glue, sprinkle with fine glitter and then coarse glitter. Shake excess glitter off page; save. Vacuum studio.
Athanasia is not a fan of glitter, so she covered most of it up with white gesso. I’m glad she added this step because I often like to use glitter.
Step 6. Stamp over everything again. I used paint this time.
Step 7. Use a dry paintbrush to drop small amounts of mica powder; spray with water. Not having mica powders, I experimented with fiber reactive dyes and used them on the page. I had already been practicing spattering.
Step 8. Paint your word (Perfection) in black and place atop the white letters. I skipped this step.
Step 9. Make a tag from vellum. Use a painted reinforcement sticker around the hole and add some yarn as a tassel. Carefully glue to page. I actually used the tag for my word of the year, BALANCE, adding the “im” to indicate imbalance. I practiced with calligraphy pens; none were permanent. I practiced with a bottle with special metal tips–the next day I couldn’t make a fist and the results were shaky. I ended up using my Pitt brush pen. Do not use hair dryer or heat gun near vellum. Do over.
Step 10. Spatter the page using a paintbrush and thinned acrylic and add some journaling. I am the world’s worst spatterer, but this method actually worked well for me. Not so much with toothbrushes and a special spattering brush. Below is the finished page with detail.
NOTE: Athanasia likes to staple things down. I wasn’t keen on this idea, but I did use a little craft stapler with bright pink staples to staple down the tag so that no glue would show through.
In the interest of keeping balance in my life, I will make the dark page at a later time. I am working on finishing a quilt for entry in a local quilt show. I’ll write about that in a future post after it is finished. Till next time…
But it’s a step in the right direction. I decided to quit trying to be perfect when I reached 40. I often say I just don’t care but that is seldom true. I do care, about doing the best job I can at any given point in time. Some days, face it–my best is pitiful. These days, with countless interruptions in my life, it is mostly about getting the job done. I have my challenge quilt layered and started practicing some straight quilting. I have seen this termed matchstick quilting. The lines are about 1/8-inch apart. I used a contrasting thread so it would photograph and also to see if I want to use contrasting thread in this project. If I can tweak the tension, I just may. This table runner will not be entered in a contest; it will probably be donated in our next Maker’s Faire or some such venue. There is some double stitching because I like to use up almost empty bobbins when I practice quilting before working on the real thing. This 2×27-inch strip took about 40-minutes, which gives me an idea of how long it will take to quilt if I continue with the matchstick. I used my walking foot, which helps to feed all the layers evenly.
I took a class last year where we practiced straight-line quilting using a free-motion foot. I got good at going in two directions; backwards and to the left, not so much. This project has a deadline of June 16 so I hope to finish by next week. The group quilt (the orange leaves) had a soft deadline of June 5. I am declaring right now that I won’t even try to make that which is no problem because I don’t think anyone else is going to be finished then either. Overachievers–just stay home. Heehee.
Since this is short, I will regale you with a photo of my pets, Andy and Sweetie, taken when I was working with random scraps last year. They like to get in on the action, too. Remember to put your flag out for the weekend to honor our fallen military.
Sometimes I feel guilty for buying magazines. I have no more room for magazines. But sometimes they catch my eye and they give my mind a breather when it’s too full. or they play into my avoidance psyche when ijustdon’tfeellikedoinganything. Last night I woke up with a solution to a problem that has been plaguing me for months. I used to use large trifold boards with examples and samples for demos and block of the month displays–you know, the boards you use to display your science fair project. So what to do with a board that’s full of pinholes and areas where the tape tore off in uneven patches. I have been trying to put all of my photos in albums and ran across an extensive packet of holy cards. In the old days, we picked up holy cards all the time in school. My missal was stuffed with them. I couldn’t just throw them away so I started collaging them to one of these boards. It is almost filled up–I filled in a some blank spaces with pages from little prayer books. One day inspiration hit–I decided I would cut this large board up and make a series with large lettering–words like faith and hope came to mind. But how to finish the edges. Last night it came to me to try some molding paste, something I see used in a lot of mixed media project. I happen to have molding paste and a slew of other Golden products that are still unused–I won them in a give-away on the Cloth Paper Scissors newsletter and have only dipped into a few jars. The gritty ones really appeal. After cutting, the edges are going to be somewhat mashed I am guessing but I’m not looking for perfection–just a way to make the edges look like I cared about finishing them. This is huge for a recovering perfectionist. Perfection is over rated and an impossible goal. Edges sometimes need to be finished. And sometimes not. I’ll get back to you on this. I have nowhere to go today–except my studio. May inspiration come to you today (or in the middle of the night).