This series of pop-up posts will focus on sharing ways in which I combine hand made art with commercial products. Since becoming a blogger for Spellbinders in 2013, I have had the opportunity to explore many supplies coming from the craft industry and to learn how to put my own twist on them as I add them into my artwork. The posts in this series may focus on completed art, process, product, and/or any other aspect of mixed media. So put the mix in the media and let's get creative...
This project started as a demo I made in May at a collaborative workshop I taught with Mary Beth Shaw at her studio in St. Louis, Missouri.
The cover felt unfinished so I decided to create more dimension by adding some die cuts. People often use die cutting as a way to add focal images to a project but I often integrate them into the background. I used Spellbinders new Sapphire Mini Die Cutting Machine and their line of Sapphire dies - currently exclusive to Joann. To all those peeps out there who are curious about die cutting but haven't yet taken the plunge, this machine is affordable, portable and a good fit for a beginner.
I used my own hand painted paper to die cut as a way to add my own style to a commercial product. I love text as much for the design element as I do for the message, so I started with the Sapphire Numbers and Letters Two die set. After the letters were added to the book cover, I outlined them with a white gel pen to make them pop.
I had already stenciled the word inside when I first made the book and decided to highlight it by using a die cut from one of the 6 dies in the Sapphire Simply Tags set. The industrial look of this blends well with the background design. To finish it off, I added a section of a postage stamp and two nail head brads to the ends.
Next I used dies from the Sapphire Basic Circles set. When you nest two different sized circle dies before you run them through the machine, you end up with a loop. I made two loops and added them, along with some additional letter die cuts, to the background. A white gel pen was used to add some shading and dimension.
I repeated this process using dies from the Sapphire Basic Rectangles and some hand cut paper as well.
In the end, I think the addition of the die cuts was the perfect touch to add layers, textures, design and dimension to the cover.
For those of you what want to explore products directly from Spellbinders, they have generously provided my blog readers with a special code that can be used to save 20% off items in their online shop (doesn't include shipping, tax, or machines). Head to their store and use code 20OFFSA.