Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Echoes of summer (by Jo)

When Judith chose our project this month I knew straight away that my piece would feature trees. The tree pictures in the Crafty Individuals Nature’s Beauty book are some of my favourites and I had used winter trees in the piece I made in Jean Hardy’s class at the Graphicus retreat last month. I thought an autumn theme would be good and prepared my collection of bare trees for this box. But my mind was still on another jaunt from the end of the summer and some of you will spot that straight away. That is how my box became a little ‘cottage’. Crafty Individuals also make chipboard trees, houses and fences but these were a bit too small for what I wanted so I made my own larger tree and fence in the style of the CI ones.

I covered them in papers I received as part of my Graphicus Guild membership. These might possibly be on the latest Essence of Nature CD but I can’t be sure as I don’t have that one yet. At this point the bare tree images were cast aside as this tree is most definitely not a autumn one. I replaced the pictures with another echo of my summer - the bluebells.

 It took a very long time to choose a colour for my box. I toyed with the idea of making it lilac as there is purple in the tree. But I wanted something that looked like part of the woodland. It started out beige but I didn’t like that so I repainted it in sage green.

I dressed my cottage with some pieces of ribbon edged with tiny leaves. I bought this ribbon with Elaine in mind really and it comes in several colours. I had expected to be using the autumn coloured one but here it is in glorious summer green!

You have to look very hard to spot the stamping on my cottage. But it is there. It’s a beautiful leaf stamp from the Elusive Images Fantasy Floral plate. I have used a tiny version of the same stamp in the background of the text (computer generated) and it also ties in with the leaves on the tree.

In her original, Isabelle Norris used Cuttlebug embossing on some of her backgrounds. I love my Cuttlebug and didn’t wanted to miss the chance to use it here so I used the script folder to make a background for the bluebells and also for my roof tiles. Like Isa’s these are made with Pearl TSS metal which has been aged with Terracotta and Gold alcohol inks. The metal was too delicate (and probably too sharp) to use on its own for the roof so each piece is backed with corrugated card which I left exposed at the edges as I think it makes it look more rustic. The eaves are made with bronze pearl card cut with a Fiskars embossing border punch (Punched Lace, I think). I was worried that with all the extra weight of the roof, the cottage wouldn’t stand up on its own as I’d originally intended so I was delighted it still works as a free-standing piece.

The fence was made in two pieces. I coloured it with Antique Linen DI and overstamped with the CI crackle stamp (CI – 116) in Vintage Photo DI. I couldn’t resist adding a butterfly. This is another CI image from the Nature’s Beauty Book. I deliberately chose one with quite neutral colours. The punched fern leaves at the base of the fence came about just because I thought they helped make the words look more at home on the fence.

The summer was not at all sad for me this year but I felt compelled to include the word as that is how I feel looking back at the summer in autumn time. I have come to a point in my crafting where the things I make evoke memories of places, people or events. I have high hopes of getting some journalling off the ground but in the meantime, this cottage on my mantelpiece will hold my memories of summer places.


Anonymous said...

wonderful! the attention to detail is fab.

craftimamma said...

Jo, I am totally awestruck by this beautiful piece of work. Every tiny detail is just perfect. I especially love the punched border for the eaves and the metal a corrugated card for the roof. The whole project is just stunning and I know how dear to you the memories this little cottage will evoke are.

Lesley Xx

Elaine said...

Jo, what a lovely project full of special memories for you. I love the way you have drawn all these elements together. The sage green is a lovely choice of colour, it works perfectly with the blubell theme and that lovely leaf edged ribbon which is almost too special to use, except on a little treasure like this!!

I love the roof, the corrgugated cardboard works brilliantly as the base for the tiles and the fence is great too - that CI crackle stamp is the best I think!

Well done on a really lovely, project, capturing some of the special moments of a lovely summer!

Elaine xx

Aquarius said...

This is wonderful and it must have taken ages - great stuff!!

Christine B. said...

Wow what a wonderful little cottage. You have put so much detail into the making of this. It must have taken you ages, but worth every second. It's Stunning and really captures summer. Hugs x ChrisB

judith@poppy cottage said...

Jo, huge aologies for not commenting earlier on your lovely project. Too much gallivanting this week!
I love the colours that you have chosen for your project, and the theme is such a special theme. The words are brilliant, and fit the box perfectly. The tree and fence are a brilliant idea, really clever, especially going supersize to make a support for the box. I really love the textured roof, it's beautiful, and makes a lovely contrast to the soft colours inside the box. It's a gorgeous colour too.
You've done a great job yet again my friend, now I need to get a wriggle on! Judith xx

Suzi B said...

Wow1 what a lot of detail...must have taken an age... fantastic!