Friday, 22 April 2016

Guest Design Spot @ AVJ

Hi Everyone,

I am thrilled to be sharing with you today a shadow box that I have made for A Vintage Journey following an invitation from Brenda to do a Guest Design spot for their April challenge.    The theme as chosen by Sandy who is hosting this challenge is "Spring is in the Air" and has described the challenge as follows:-
Leave those winter blues behind. Make anything that says SPRING using pastel colours. It is your choice, a card, canvas, 3D or a tag, etc. but remember it should be in one of the styles that we like to see.
 I started by crumpling up some tissue paper and gluing it to the back frame of a canvas using glue and seal and a brush, I let it dry whilst I started the background,
I used Postal tissue wrap to cover a piece of card I had already measured and cut to fit the inside of the shadow box
Next I used Cracked Pistachio, Twisted Citron, Fossilised amber and Tumbled glass distress inks as a watercolour to colour the tissue wrap.  I gave it a quick dry brush with gesso and then used Decoart crackled texture paste through two stencils I made from the mixed media 2 thinlets set. 
 I used the bird feather stamp set to stamp the blackbird, you can see on the 2nd photo the difference between using black archival ink and versafine, the versafine one on the top is much clearer.  I used distress crayons to colour the blackbird and  used clear embossing powder to give him a glaze and lift the colours a little.  I also used the next from this stamp set on the background using Potting soil archival.
I stamped a few grasses in the background with a very old Tim Holtz stamp set which you can see below it's called Natures Elements.  I knocked this back a little with watered down gesso as I felt the colours were a bit strong. 

The flowers were die-cut using Watercolour paper and the smallest flower from the Bigz Tattered Florals and then each flower was shaped using a ball tool.  The flower centres were cut using a small flower punch from thin card painted with Shabby Shutters DP.  The stamen were cut down and held in the centre of the flowers with silicone glue, left to dry and then the tips painted with Spiced Marmalade paint. You can see from the photo I had quite a conveyor belt going on with these flowers!  
I used Silicone glue once again to glue them on to a real twig. The nest stamped on the picture below was just on scrap card to give me an idea where to place the flowers. 
I wanted to give a bit more dimension to the stamped nest so I cut a few branches using Autumn gatherings decorative strip and painted them with Walnut Stain DP,  I also used a few on another twig.  Next I die-cut some grasses from green core card using Winter Foliage thinlets, and  some netting using Mixed media set 1 which was then coloured with distress stains.

At this stage I was happy with the background and turned my attention back on to the shadow box frame itself.
A few more distress ink colours and tissue tape made the letters to spell out SPRING and the vintage ribbon was coloured with the same colours to make a bow.
The garden twine was simply wrapped around the frame and secured in the corners with a knot both on the back and on the front.  The bow was added to the top left corner, I made a few eggs for the nest, and a stamped butterfly (Indigo Blu) was added to pick up the blue of the eggs.
 Finally, I used a glue gun to secure the blackbird, twigs and letters.
 Here are a few close up photo's, hope you enjoy

Thank you as always for your visit today.
Mo x


  1. Just been enjoying this over at AVJ - really great to see how all those fabulous details came together - brilliant and beautiful, Mo!
    Alison x

  2. Like Alison, just saw this on AVJ, I completely adore this project Mo, and it was wonderful to get further details here! This is a new favourite for sure!!!

  3. Mo, you have done it again and created a mini masterpiece! I loved it there but seeing how you put it all together is just so interesting - your attention to detail is second to none my friend!! Love this! Hugs, Anne xxx

  4. Hi Mo You really have captured the essence of spring with your beautiful shadow box. So much attention to detail and wonderful touches . Those flowers and your bird look so real and I love the addition of the twine to the frame .
    Congratulations on your Guest design spot today and thanks so much for sharing such an inspiring piece of art with us at AVJ .
    hugs x

  5. What a gorgeous shadow box, thank you for this great tutorial and for sharing your process, amazing details and techniques! Congratulations on your guest designer spot at AVJ and thanks so much for sharing your talent with us all, Deb xo

  6. So sorry I did not get to comment on this gorgeous reverse canvas when you published it Mo but wifi was non existent on our resort which was so frustrating for me. I just adore this beautiful Spring piece full of wonderful images especially the gorgeous bird that looks amazing with the crayon colouring and ep finish. I shall certainly remember to use versafine ink when next stamping him up, wow what a difference it makes. I love that he is sitting proudly on the branches of blossom with the gorgeous backdrop behind him. Thank you for sharing your wonderful art and a superb post with us at AVJ and being a very special guest designer.
    Huge hugs Brenda xxx

  7. I commented on your wonderful project over at AVJ but never apparently never got over here to your blog! This is such a beautiful reverse framed project - every time I see a project like this I remind myself I really want to try this - I just love how you colored your bird - and your beautiful flowered tree branch Mo. Julia xx