About Me

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My name's Alison but for reasons too long to go into I'm known as Cockney Blonde or CB for short. I've been rubber stamping for several years but now spend most of my time either knitting or crocheting. However, with the advent of a New Year I have bitten the bullet and am tackling my usually hated pastime of sewing. I've even bought 'Sewing for Dummies' to guide me on my way. I've been with my hubby Dave for 24 years and between us we have 4 kids and 5 grandkids. We also have 2 cats and a dog, the latter features as my 'photo' image. I used to be able to blog daily but these days I struggle to blog weekly. Hopefully now we are settled into our new home in the country, I can get back to a daily (well almost) update from the room I now have to share with hubby. No more personal crafting space for me!!! Thanks to all the blogs and sites I follow for all your brilliant inspiration, and thank you to everyone who finds the time to comment on my blog.

Monday, 25 January 2010

Our Creative Corner Sketch Challenge

I'm trying to combine my involvement in the challenges with other projects I need to do so I thought what better way of doing the front cover for my upcoming deco book than to use the sketch challenge from OCC.

I wanted my covers to be 5.5" square which I have cut from cardboard. The sort you find in sturdy boxes. I then tore pieces of paper from scraps (great way to use them up) and stuck using PVA glue to get some depth and definition. Next a layer of gesso which I dried off with the heat gun.

Now for the Claudine Hellmuth paints. I just love these paints and have used them on altered art projects and cards. They are so easy to apply and blend brilliantly. You can also mix them to create no end of alternative colours and shades. My introduction to these paints was at a workshop at Art From the Heart in Harrogate, taught by the crazy, but talented, Dyan Reaveley http://dyan-reaveley.blogspot.com/ Dyan showed us the best way was to build up the colours gradually and in thin layers so that they dry quickly, that way it speeds up the process.
Anyway, I started off with Traditional Tan and Painterly Pink, gradually applying and blending until most of the papers were covered. Remember the papers were only applied to give depth not for their colours or patterns.

*** I should say at this point that I would usually apply the paints with baby wipes and then fingers (Yep! you get messy, lol), however because I didn't want to make the cardboard too wet I used blue roll, you know the sort the gas engineer leaves behind after he's repaired your boiler!!! And of course, fingers.***

Once I was happy with this layer I then moved onto Sable Brown and Modern Red, applying in the same way and building up the layers until I was happy with the depth of colour.

The subject for my deco book is going to be 'Me and My Imaginary Friend'. I found a lovely image amongst Lisa'a Altered Art (see Dyan's blog for the link) which I have framed after colouring in Distress Inks Antique Linen and Tattered Rose. I've then overstamped in Black Stazon with various phrases/words featuring 'friend' and 'imagination'. Lastly I've edged the frame in Adirondack Espresso Dabber.

Once I'd embellished it with the ribbon and charm I felt there was something missing so using sequin scrap I dabbed gold with the Adirondack Gold Dabber.

Once I am ready to assemble the book I shall attach ribbons/fibres to finish it off. No doubt I shall add some other bellies as well, lol.

Hope you like it and I hope it fits the challenge criteria.


  1. It's looking great, Alison! You're going great guns with these challenges - there's obviously no stopping you now!
    Diane x

  2. Gorgeous book cover, Alison. Looking forward to seeing it finished.

  3. Your card is FANTASTIC! Great job on the challenge. Thanks for playing along with us this week at Our Creative Corner.

  4. Lovely cover for your deco book Alison. xxx

  5. Alison not sure if my comment got lost somewhere. Anyway - this is what I said. Great choice of subject for your deco - kicking myself as I opted for something boring. Oh well, always next year!! Your cover is stunning, of course you know me, I love any type of paint. It is so imaginative. Well done on completing your cover already. Might have to take a leaf out of your book lol. Anyway, I am keeping fingers and toes crossed as I want to be in your group! Lynne M x

  6. Sorry Lynne, no idea what happened to your original comment. Probably lost in cyberspace with a scan I've sent to Cath. Maybe the two messages will meet up and live happily ever after, lol. Anyway thanks for your lovely comments, x

  7. Wow! You are getting too clever. What a gorgeous piece of artwork - love it, love it, love it.


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