I’ve wanted to start blogging for over a year now.  Sometimes I can be a perfectionist, so I think this has delayed my first post.  I’ve been researching blogging, visiting blogs, exploring blog designers online….mostly doing everything but blogging! ha ha! So I’ve decided to jump in and just start, even though I do not have a blog header or background picked out.  Can a person think too much?  I can! 

What will I blog about? Mostly scrapbooking, but I’m sure I’ll add tidbits of daily life, my family, raising children and now teenagers and maybe even my writing.  I’ve started writing about 5 different novels over the past 15 years but haven’t completed one yet.  There’s a chance I will write a novel online through this blog too, posting a chapter a week, but first we’ll see how it goes. Ultimately, if you visit my blog and somehow I’ve made your day a little lighter and brighter, I will be very very happy 🙂

Lately, my scrapbooking has been put on a back shelf because of a new work contract, but right now I have a little “breather” from my research/writing project, and it seems like good timing to begin my blogging life.

For my first post, I thought I’d include tutorials and detailed descriptions about how I created this 2-page layout with the Graphic 45 Once Upon a Springtime collection.  I teach classes and design at my local scrapbook store, Scrap-A-Lot, and this layout was designed for a technique class at the store a couple of months ago.This is one of the first layouts where I used professional photos, taken by Cindy Gannon Photography, of my youngest daughter Mila.

I seem to have a “thing” for trees in my designs.  As soon as I had these G45 papers in my hands, I knew I wanted to create a forest scene.  I tend to design lots of scenes on my layouts and call them “vignettes” and storyboards….alas, I do love a good story 🙂 Last December, I watched a video tutorial by Jennifer McGuire at twopeasinabucket.com where she made a flower and small Christmas tree out of strips of Claudine Helmuth Sticky Back canvas. If you’re not familiar with Jennifer McGuire, check her out because her video tutorials are amazing! 

I thought I could try her inked canvas technique on this tree.  First, I cut a template of a tree out of brown cardstock….the brown will hide any spots that are not covered by canvas.  Then I took a whole 12×12 sheet of the canvas and inked it with Frayed Burlap, Brushed Corduroy and Vintage Photo Distress Inks.  Actually, this takes a long time, and you can achieve the same effect by spraying the canvas with a mist, and in the class I taught, we used Maya Mist “Latte”.  (In this demo, I did not ink the entire canvas, but it should be completed inked or sprayed BEFORE you start snipping and ripping)

Ink or spray the entire canvas so it is completely coloured.

 After the ink/spray colour has dried, take your scissors and snip a 1/4″ wide starting point where you will hold and just rip off….LOVE that about the canvas. 

…and RIP!

 Add your canvas strip to the tree, crinkling, twisting and basically creating some dimension and texture with it on the trunk. Continue making snips and rip off strips, but be prepared for noise!  (Your kids might come running to see what all the racket is about, and this is definitely a technique that they can do for YOU! ha ha!)

Twist and crinkle canvas to cover tree template.

 After the entire tree and branches are covered with canvas strips, take a dark brown ink (I used Walnut Stain Distress Ink) and lightly run it across the raised bits of canvas here and there to give it dimension.  Here’s where you can go wild with ink and add whatever other brown tones or colours to vary the shades of the tree trunk.  I’m a firm believer in modification….change things up to your own liking and go for it!  That is definitely my mantra in the classes I teach.  

The “writer” in me is getting out of hand, and I can go on and on with more details, but it’s getting late, and I do want to post this tonight. Next post I’ll explain the leaves on this layout and the techniques to create them.

Thanks for joining me on the first day of my blogging journey! Hope you come by again some time soon 🙂

8 Comments on Almost Here!

  1. Sharon
    June 5, 2011 at 2:04 pm (5 years ago)

    Kelly!!!! Congrats on your new blog! I love the tutorial!!!! I love your 2-page layout. I soooooo wish I lived closer so I could attend one of your classes. You are always so creative and artistic! I am a follower now and can’t wait to see more, my friend!

  2. Renee VanEpps
    June 5, 2011 at 8:27 pm (5 years ago)

    This is such an awesome LO Kelly!! I’ve had my eye on that Sticky-Back Canvas for a while now, think I’m going to bump it up on the wish list after seeing this! It’s really beautiful and creative 🙂

  3. Pendra
    June 6, 2011 at 12:40 am (5 years ago)

    Kelly this is so gorgeous. I am a quilter and I can see where some of my quilt skills could be transitioned into this medium. Thanks for the tutorial and look forward to the next one. And BTW I am still working on my 1st blog, checking out others and research etc. It’s a real job!??! Congrats on getting yours going!

  4. Michelle
    June 6, 2011 at 7:40 am (5 years ago)

    Woohoo!!!! Way to go Kelly! Sooooo proud of you girlfriend…you finally just grabbed the bull by the horns and dove in!!!!Love from your #1 { or at least your FIRST follower heehee} XO

  5. Sandra D
    June 6, 2011 at 8:54 am (5 years ago)

    Congratulations Kelly – the wait was worth it! You have done a fabulous job on your first post – a layout, a tutorial and great writing. I am so proud of you and can’t wait to read and see more of your beautiful work.

  6. Sandi Smith
    June 7, 2011 at 8:55 am (5 years ago)

    YAYYYY….so glad you have a blog….maybe now we will see more of those stunning creations!! Awesome tutorial!

  7. Alia
    June 7, 2011 at 11:56 pm (5 years ago)

    Welcome to Blogger Kelly!! 🙂

  8. Kazza
    June 25, 2011 at 9:10 pm (5 years ago)

    Wow Kelly….A fabulous technique! Haven’t done any canvas work yet, but you make me want too! A stunning LO and tutorial!!


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