Saturday, December 28, 2013

Holiday Cards

I've been meaning to make cards more often, but truthfully I've only made less than a dozen or so since I started crafting a few years back.  I made these cards just by layering some scraps, images from Pinterest, and a few embellishments.  I thought they turned out cute considering.

Gina's Designs Products Used:

Altered Cigar Box for my Swap Partner

This year some of the members on the Gina's Designs Team decided to participate in a gift and goodie swap.  It was a lot of fun decorating this unfinished cigar box from Michael's for my swap partner Angela.  I began with paper in soft muted tones.  I applied the paper with gel medium and put another coat of gel medium over the top.  I decoupaged doilies and a dragonfly image on top of the base paper.  I added a die cut frame and a chipboard frame on top of that and also coated with the gel medium.  The embellishments are mainly crocheted appliques, a fabric flower, a cameo from the dollar store, and paper butterflies.  I also applied a beautiful multi-colored lace trim on the sides and coated it with gel medium.  On the outside of the top lid I applied some beaded trim and secured it with more gel medium.

On the inside I decoupaged more design paper and some die cut birds

Closeup of the inside lid.

Gina's Designs Products Used:

Other Products:
Papers by DCWV
Bird Die Cuts by DCWV
Golden self-leveling gel medium
Flower Appliques by Delightful Designer and Raviolee Dream on Etsy
Tim Holtz feet
Butterflies by Renea Bouquets on Etsy

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Reindeer Games 12 x 12 Layout

This layout features my dog Friday.  I took this photo last Christmas but never had a chance to scrap it.  I cut the layered wreath with my cricut using a free svg file from   The red doily underneath the wreath is cut from a Martha Stewart punch.   The banner was fussy cut from design paper, and popped up off the page.  Then I added additional embellishments on top of it to make it even more dimensional.

Gina's Designs Products Used:
Winter Shape Set (the title)
banner border strips

Other Products:
Martha Stewart Circle Edge Punch in Rounded Leaf
Tim Holtz Sizzlets Decorative Strip Die - Festive Greenery
My Mind's Eye All is Bright Collection - Noel
BoBunny Blitzen Collection
Prima Flowers

Thursday, December 19, 2013

There really is a Santa Claus!

Here is my newest layout featuring my Frankie.  Here he is watching in amazement as Santa crosses overhead on Christmas Eve.  I began with some BoBuuny design paper and applied some Japanese lace paper with gel medium over the center to create the look of swirling snow.

Gina's Designs Products Used:
Santa and Sleigh Shape Set (available soon or by request)
Other Products:
BoBunny Design Paper (Blitzen Collection)
Japanese Lace Paper (available online at Dick Blick art supplies)
Prima Vintage Trinkets (resin bird)
Prima resin lamppost (shabby chic treasures)
Prima say-it-in-crystals bling
Flowers by Prima and Petaloo
Prima Junkyard findings (zipper)
glossy accents
glitter glue
Tim Holtz frosted film (on the windows)
clear glass microbeads
The moon image was found online and printed out

Monday, December 16, 2013

Home Decor or Photo Display Tray

Today I'm sharing one of our Photo Display Trays which I've used as a Christmas home decor project.  This project could be hung on my wall as part of my Holiday display, or perhaps placed on an easel on my mantel.  These display trays come in a variety of designs and themes, from Steampunk to pets and children. This is the fourth one I've made!  I love how simple they are to decorate, with or without photos.

In addition to the tray itself, which I painted in cardinal red, I also added some Gina's Designs chipboard shapes to my tray.  Closeups are below explaining how I colored and decorated the ornament and the snowman:

For the snowman:

If you're after a vintage look, as I was, try inking instead of painting.  First dry brush the pieces with a thick gesso and a fan shaped brush, using very little paint on the brush.  You can always add more.  On mine you can see the natural chipboard peeking through.  I didn't want complete coverage, making it look more vintage and shabby.  The fan brush helps achieve a light coverage.  After the gesso was completely dry, I simply colored with Tim Holtz distress inks in Christmas colors using cosmetic sponges to apply the ink.  Note that the hat is naturally highlighted by using more ink at the edges.  I really like the effect.  I wanted my snowman to wear a vest, so I used the holly leaf shapes from the shape set to make a vest :)

For the ornament:

This was really simple to decorate with embossing powder.  No need to paint the chipboard if your embossing ink is nice and wet.  I used Stampendous shabby embossing powder in white.  The shabby embossing powders are multi-colored, and this one has flecks of gold in it so it's a nice one-step process.  After the embossing, I applied Tim Holtz frosted film.  Simply cut a piece from the roll that's big enough to cover your ornament.  Trace the circle, then cut the film just inside your trace line.  Apply the film to the back of your ornament.  The sticky side will be up.  Shake some clear glass microbeads all over the sticky area. Tap the ornament to remove excess beads onto a piece of paper so you can return the excess beads to your container.  Add some bling gems.  For a sturdier ornament to hang on the tree, you could also back these with plain paper, painted chipboard, or design paper, and/or sandwich the frosted film in between.  Fun!

Gina's Designs Products used:

Ornaments Shape Set (not available online, at brick and mortar stores only)

Other Products Used:

Folk Art paint in Cardinal Red
Fan Brush
Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Black Soot, Iced Spruce, Pine Needle, and Festive Berries
Recollections bling and the little Christmas packages also by Recollections
Tim Holtz tattered poinsettia die
Design paper by My Mind's Eye (All is Bright collection)
Tim Holtz movers and shapers die (mini reindeer and 25 set) - ( I used the 25 at the bottom left of the tray)

Monday, November 25, 2013

Nature Inspired Altered Spool with Photo Tutorial

These spools by Gina's Designs are so much fun to decorate!  They are large spools and there is plenty of room to play with.  I wanted my finished spool to be nature inspired, and the end result was exactly what I'd had in mind.   I have created a step by step photo tutorial and you will find it following the photos of my finished piece.  The tutorial will show you how I created a  simple and dimensional faux bark look to the center of the spool.  I hope you like it!

Here is my finished spool:

Step by step faux bark tutorial:

In step one I have drawn lines of hot glue onto the spool center to simulate a tree pattern.  I grabbed a tree bark rubber stamp from my stash to get an idea of the pattern I would use.  It took just a few moments to draw on the hot glue.  Be sure your glue gun is nice and hot. My glue gun is the fine-tipped variety and I used the high temperature setting.  It took 3 of the fat glue sticks to achieve this.

In step two I painted it with two coats of white gesso followed by gloss enamel paint in light buttermilk.

In step three I used some ink sprays in nature colors to define the raised areas.

In step four I still wanted more definition so I  rubbed on some Lumiere metallics with my finger to further define the raised areas.  I followed that with a clear pearlescent spray for shine

In step five I covered the surface with thick coat of distress crackle paint in clear rock candy

Here is a close-up of the finished product

Although I did not do a tutorial on the rest of the spool, I will show you and explain some of the steps below:

Before attaching the top and bottom disks to the center piece, I first painted the two disks.  I used the same white gesso, followed by the same light buttermilk enamel paint that I used to paint the center of the spool. After the paint was dry I used Kroma Crackle to distress the finish on the disks.  When using Kroma Crackle I do the white glue method in combination as it dries quickly that way.  You can find this white glue method along with other product how-to's for Kroma Crackle HERE.  I purchase my Kroma Crackle at Dick Blick Art Supplies.  It has to be applied thickly for the best results.  I just use my finger to spread the white glue and the Kroma Crackle.  The crackle dries white so I colored it with ink sprays in browns and greens to look mossy like the floor of the forest.  Now it was time to glue the disks to the cylinder. I first sanded the top and bottom edges of the cylinder to insure better contact.  I then glued the top and bottom to the center of the spool with glossy accents.  There is a grove cut into the top and bottom of the disks so that you know exactly where to place  them on the center part.  I squeezed my glossy accents into the grooves.  I placed an item of moderate weight, in my case a ceramic dinner plate on top of the spool until I was sure the glossy accents had dried and that my spool was put together securely.  I then covered all exposed areas of the disks with the same rock candy distress crackle paint that I used on the center piece.

A close up is here

I gave the edges a finished look by hot gluing fibers along the edges of the disks.  I love these fibers, they are very soft and look like moss.  I purchased these fibers on Etsy,  HERE

Now the fun begins!  The next step is to start gluing your embellishments! 

I personally love the look of nature inspired, but I can see this spool decorated in many different ways, and I know I'll be making more.  I have a vision of the spool dripping with pearls and lace in a gorgeous shabby chic style, maybe an elaborate fairy forest, or perhaps a fun and funky steampunk design, or even mermaids in an ocean theme.   Whatever theme you choose, have fun and please share with us on our facebook page.

Gina's Designs Products Used:

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Layout in a shabby chic style

This layout features chipboard by Gina's Designs, some mixed media techniques, and my kitty Olive Oyl.  Olive was abandoned at my cat boarding facility at 16 years old.  She was given up by her owner in favor of the new relationship in her life.  I can't fathom how anyone could do that, but I love this girl to pieces.  She's a sweet old kitty and I think the shabby chic styling of this layout suits her purrrfectly.

Gina's Designs Products used:

doilies 8 inch
fern fronds
Leafy corners
steampunk doilies

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Steampunk Canvas

This steampunk reverse canvas was made as a gift for a man.  It was a bit of a challenge for me to create a canvas without any flowers, but I'm really happy with the end result.  On the inside I used a mask and spray inks.  On the frame I used embossed metal foil tape with a sticky back.  In preparing my steampunk elements I tried to use different techniques to get as must interest and texture as I could.  I began with the chipboard art doll which I papered with a free schematics paper that I downloaded on the internet.  It had just the right touches of teal in it.  I also found a face for the art doll as part of a free collage sheet.  I used matte gel medium over the top of the art doll after it was papered to add stability.  I added some fun fussy cut images from Graphic 45's Steampunk Debutante papers, and the rest came easily by adding inked and/or embossed gears and other chippies and elements from my stash.

Gina's Designs Products Used:

Other Products:

12 x 12 Canvas
Metal Foil Sticky-backed Tape (around the frame)
Tim Holtz Gears Mask (on the inside)
Dylusions spray inks (inside canvas)
Ranger Patinas (to color the foil tape)
Stampendous embossing powders to color chipboard elements
Prima chalk inks to color chipboard elements
Tim Holtz metal gears colored with Ranger Patinas
(by using a combination of both chipboard and metal elements you get more texture and interest)
Prima Junkyard Findings (little faucets and spark plug)
Graphic 45 Steampunk Debutante papers
Punchinella in black
Tim Holtz metal wings and crown
eyelets were used as "glasses" on my art doll and colored with Ranger Patinas
Doorknob on lower left by Graphic 45

Friday, November 1, 2013

Layout - The Good Life using Gina's Designs chipboard lazer cuts

This was a quick project, trying to use up my supplies and some of my photos of the fur kids. This one features "Zeke", just one of my many four-legged couch potatoes. This photo was taken on super bowl Sunday 2013. I had gotten up to fix a snack and he got all cozy with my afghan. I have used some chipboard pieces by Gina's Designs including the curvy filmstrip which I cut in half, and the film reel at the top right. The pieces are part of our Hollywood set that includes a director's chair, large movie camera and other pieces. The butterflies are by Renea Bouquets on Etsy.

Gina's Designs Products used:

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Halloween layout for Gina's Designs

Today I am sharing amlayout featuring my dog Billie Jean all dressed up for Halloween.  I had fun dressing her up in costumes from the dollar store.  Of all my dogs, Billie Jean is the only one that actually seems to enjoy hamming it up for the camera.  I embellished this layout by combining chippies from Gina's Designs and some fun new stencils I had ordered online.

I inked the hanging clock with prima chalk inks in black and orange, covered the back of the clock with frosted film, and applied glass microbeads to the sticky part.  All other chippies were also covered in Prima chalk inks as well as the intricate doilies peeking out from the top of the layout.  I made the layered witch embellishment at the bottom right of the photo by beginning with a doily, then added a scalloped orange glittered paper layer that I had punched with a scallop punch, then added the witch image that was part of the paper line by using a round punch.  The layers are pop dotted to make a dimensional embellishment.  The doilies are so useful in making your own embellies.  

Gina's Designs Products Used:

Hanging Clock Set
Spider Web Shape Set
Doilies (I got mine in black by special request)
Intricate Doilies
Barbed Wire

Other Products

Dylusions Stencils -  Lucious Leaves and Checkered Dots
Prima Chalk Inks
Dylusions Ink Sprays
Crafter's Workshop Mini Deco Doily Stencil Doily
My Mind's Eye Wicked Mechant Malvado papers
Flower vine by Prima
Petaloo Orange Velvet Flowers
Tim Holtz Frosted Film
clear glass microbeads

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Gothic Layout - The Darkside

I love the darkside of Halloween and I enjoy scary movies, ghost stories, and vampire fiction.  I wanted to create something really Gothic, but was also hoping for artistic and somehow beautiful at the same time.  I hope you can enjoy a bit of the macabre.  I had a lot of fun creating this one.

Gina's Designs Products used:

Corner Flourish ( this can be special ordered)

Other Products:

Papers from my stash
Damask Stencil
Splats Stencil
Static Stencil
Prima chalk inks
Petaloo flowers
Dylusions ink sprays

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Spooktacular Gothic Birdcage

This dimensional birdcage by Gina's Designs was so much fun to put together and decorate.  I have seen several of these from the Design Team already, and all are fun and different.  I decided to decorate mine in a gothic theme for Halloween.

I began by spray painting the three pieces with black matte spray paint by Krylon.  Next I attached the bottom, then added a raven and some moss to the inside.  I followed that by attaching the top, a very simple task,  matching the holes at the top and stitching it together.  (I used a thin bakers twine and an embroidery needle).  I can't sew, but had no problems putting this together.  Then I used silver rub n buff all over the cage.  Next came the fun part, looking through my Halloween stash, plugging in my hot glue gun, and adding all the embellishments I could fit.  The back and sides are covered with spider webbing but it doesn't show in the photo. The bare tree was crackle painted before gluing it to the bars of the cage.

Gina's Design's Products used:

Bird Cage - coming soon

Monday, September 30, 2013

Halloween cards from Gina's Design's free printables

I really loved the Halloween themed free printables from Gina's Designs for the month of September.  Gina offers up some amazing free printables that are available on the blog.  Meanwhile, I had been clearing up my desk of the scraps I had left from the two Halloween themed projects that I'd created during the month, and I got the idea to create a few cards using my scraps and Gina's printables.  I'm really not a card maker, but the printables made it so easy and fun.  I hope you like them.

Gina's Designs products used:

Freebie Friday free printables available for free download  on our blog at  Gina's Designs
chipboard spider webs

Other Products:

Scraps from various Recollections brand Halloween themed papers
Scraps from Graphic 45 Happy Haunting & Steampunk Spells collections
Martha Stewart punch all over the page (used on the bottom right card)

Thursday, September 26, 2013

A Spooky Halloween Layout featuring Gina's Designs and my cat Majicou

This Design Team project features my cat Majicou who is ready to scare the trick or treaters this Halloween.  I've used several chipboard  Halloween shapes and some steampunk styled intricate doilies (one of the awesome new products in the shop).  Links to products and techniques used to decorate them are below.

Gina's Designs Products Used:

Spooky Shapes Set
Steampunk Doilies
Small fence and gate set
Gears shape set

Other products and techniques used
Stampendous embossing powder on the ghost and the "Boo"
Black Prima chalk ink on the spiderweb
Black Prima chalk ink on the gothic gate followed by Tim Holtz Distress crackle paint in tarnished brass
Black Prima chalk ink on the tiny gears which I have layered over the steampunk doilies for more dimension
Stencils by The Crafters Workshop including "mini splats" and "harlequin"
Dylusions black magic ink spray
Cheesecloth from my stash
Spiders from my stash
Flowers by Petaloo (black) and Recollections (orange)

Friday, September 20, 2013

Gothic Layout - Eternity featuring Gina's Designs

When I saw this promo photo of Kristen Stewart for the final movie in the Twilight Saga, Breaking Dawn 2, I knew I had to scrap it.  I loved the Gothic background and the gorgeous dress.  I got out my stashes of laces and velvet and fabric flowers, my stencils, texture paste and sprays and had so much fun creating this keepsake layout.

Gina's Designs Products Used:

Steampunk Doilies (above the photo)
Gothic Gate (small fence and gate set)

Other products:

Stencils by TCW in damask and the mini deco doily
Prima mask - peacock feathers
Ink Sprays by Dylusions
Flowers by Prima and Petaloo
Large velvet flower by Delightful Designer on Etsy
Fabric Butterfly by Prima
Laces from my stash
Lace appliques from Raviolee Dreams on Etsy
Prima chalk ink in coal black (on lamppost and gate)
Stampendous shabby embossing powder in black and gold (on lamppost and gate)
Ranger distress crackle paint in tarnished brass (on lamppost and gate)
Tim Holtz frosted film and glass microbeads used on the lamppost as "glass"

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Photo Display Tray in a Halloween Theme

Today I have a spooky version of our photo display tray in the damask style (one of many styles available).  In this creation I've teamed up lots of Gina's fun chipboard shapes with papers from Graphic 45. You can't go wrong with this combo, and I had so much fun I was awake all night just waiting until I could get up and play some more.

For products and techniques, see the bottom of this post

Gina's Designs products used:

Photo Display Tray
Spooky Shapes Set
Spiderweb Shapes Set
Cottage Windows - Small
Lamppost 2
Flourishes 1
Apothecary Miniatures Shape Set (available soon)

Other Products and techniques used

Patterned Papers by Graphic 45 (Steampunk Spells & Happy Haunting collections)

Black acrylic paint, Kroma Crackle and white school glue used on the tray frame

Modern Masters Metal Effect Iron Paint and rust activator used on the lamppost

White Gesso (light dry brush coating) and Prima Chalk inks used to color chippies

Stamping on chipboard shapes with rollagraph stamp in crackle pattern

Tim Holtz distress rock candy crackle paint (on the witch)

Distress stickles in black soot (on the bats)

Ranger Embossing Pearl in Pearl Blue (on the apothecary jars and the word "Boo")

Stampendous embossing Powder in crystal transparent (on the ghost)

Tim Holtz frosted film used as glass in lamppost and window and sprinkling of clear glass microbeads

Tim Holtz distress embossing powder in Vintage Photo and a script stamp (on the flourishes)

Monday, September 9, 2013

Vintage 8 x 10 canvas created from bits and pieces and Gina's Designs

I created this in just a few minutes with the stuff that was on my desk (but mind you my desk is a mess and there's a lot of stuff on it). The image is one of our Gina's Designs freebie printables.  You can find them on the Gina's Designs blog, our Facebook page, or on Pinterest.  I also used some doilies and flowers and die cuts.  I had already made the canvas background a few weeks ago when I was in the mood to make several in different colors and textures, so the rest of the project was easy.  I hope you like it!

Gina's Designs products used:

freebie printable

To create the canvas I first adhered the crown logo patterned tissue paper from a pair of Juicy Couture shoes to the canvas with gel medium, then used a damask stencil and texture paste followed by lots of ink sprays.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

ATC Shrine by Gina's Designs

This is an ATC-sized shrine by Gina's Designs.  These little shrines come in several styles.  I had originally planned to make an ATC to put inside, but then decided to just decorate the little forest directly inside in layers from back to front.  There are several layers of trees and ferns inside.  It was difficult to photograph as there were so many layers and they didn't all want to focus properly at the same time.  I love the fairies also by Gina's Designs so naturally I had to add one to my forest.  It's so sparkly inside, I just want to step right in. 

Gina's Designs products used:

Additional products:
Kroma crackle
woodsy stuff and mosses from my stash

Friday, August 30, 2013

"The Intervention" - A layout featuring my cat Majicou

They stole this bag of catnip from a closed drawer in the kitchen. It was all over the house. I can't be positive which one took it from the drawer, but "Majicou" was the one caught holding the bag so to speak. He looked pretty guilty to me. In this layout I used chipboard grasses by Gina's Designs. I totally love the grasses and I've used it on everything from Layouts to cards, to canvases, and other altered projects. The butterflies are by Renea Bouquets on Etsy. The papers are by BoBunny,  the Trail Mix collection including the fussy cut birds. Ferns and other foliage dies by paper trey ink, and by Marianne Creatables.  Hope you like it :)

 Grasses by Gina's Designs

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Flying Heart Wall Hanging Kit

This is one of the wall hanging kits from Gina's Designs and it was a pleasure to assemble and decorate.

The kit comes with the following:

6 x 6 chipboard square with a small hole punched in each corner (I used my cropodile to insert eyelets into each hole).  This square piece is intended to be at the top

6 x 7.5 chipboard rectangle with two holes punched at the top and one hole punched in the center of the bottom.  This piece is intended to connect to the square at the top, and to hang the large key from the center of the bottom.

A large heart and a smaller heart
A pair of wings
A crown
Large key (to hang from the bottom of the chipboard rectangle) and also a smaller key
Corrugated die cut shape (I used this on the top piece)
Corrugated cardboard strip (fits the length of the bottom piece, and I chose to cut mine in half)
Three words (Dream, Inspire, and Create)

Please see the bottom of this post for a list of the other items from Gina's Designs that I added to my hanging.  This piece looked gorgeous as it was without the extras I added, but that's just me, I can't stop once I get my hands on my chippies :)

Gina's Designs Products used:
Flying Heart Wall Hanging Kit
Steampunk Shapes Set
Steampunk Shapes 2
Hinge straps shapes set
Brick Wall

Other Products used:

Butterflies from Renea Bouquets on Etsy
Tim Holtz Design paper
Prima Chalk Inks
Crackle Accents
Metal Effects Iron Paint by Modern Masters (used on the chipboard keys and hinge)
Metal Effects Rust Activator by Modern Masters (The activator is part two in the above process)
Rub n Buff in silver, in gold and in patina
Tim Holtz silver metallic distress dabber paint
Tim Holtz distress embossing powder (on the wings)
Metal roses from my stash
Recollections gold roses
Magic Mesh in pale green
Tim Holtz chain clasps

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Memory Box from Gina's Designs in an Alice in Wonderland Theme

These 5 x 7 memory boxes from Gina's Designs come in the same themed shapes as our ATC shrines.   I chose the one with the time theme thinking I'd either do an Alice in Wonderland themed project, or something steampunk.  It had been awhile since I'd indulged myself and created a detailed fantasy project.  I love to create a little world that tempts me to step into it.
The memory box could certainly also be used to display a favorite photo.  I thought about that possibility as well, and come to think of it, I just might need another one :)

I began by taping off the little notches with masking tape then painting the box with gesso.  You can skip the masking process, but you might have to do some sanding afterwards so that the notches will fit together properly when you assemble it later.  I applied some Japanese lace papers in shades of blue and green adhering and protecting it with golden gel medium.  Then came various ink sprays and finally some Kroma crackle to further distress the finish.

I created a little book covered with leather-look paper on the outside, and a little drink me bottle

 I love how the background came out both inside and out.  I then added lots of mosses, die cut leaves etc to create my fantasy forest. The tree on the inside is also by Gina's Designs.  The Alice in Wonderland images were purchased on Etsy and I doubled up the heavy cardstock before fussy cutting and then covered the images with triple thick gloss medium by Deco Arts  to make them very sturdy, shiny and durable.

 On the backside of the box I decided to lay some of the new chipboard bricks (coloring them with chalk inks and using some texture paste as my grout.  At the top of the brick wall I added one of Gina's curly trees also colored with chalk inks and stickles.
 I had so much fun, I hope you like it!

Gina's Designs Products used:

Time themed 5 x 7 Memory Box
(Gina's Designs products listed as coming soon are available by request and will be listed in the shop soon)

Other Products:

Japanese Lace Paper (I purchased mine online from Dick Blick Art Materials)
Golden Gel Medium in matte finish
Prima Chalk Inks
Prima resin mushroom
Various mosses and things from my stash
Tim Holtz glass bottle
Images from Etsy
Distress stickles by Ranger
Rub n Buff in gold
Gesso in white
Texture paste by Liquitex

Sunday, August 11, 2013

A layout featuring chipboard peacock feathers

I just love these peacock feathers.  This is my second time using these awesome feathers in a project and this time I simply colored them with Prima chalk inks and a bit of distress stickles in black soot.   I thought they were perfect for this simple layout of my cat Tulip.

Gina's Designs Products used:

Other Products:
Kaisercraft Miss Empire Collectibles cardstock die cuts
Petaloo flowers
Butterflies from Renea Bouquets on Etsy
Hanging resin lamp from Prima
Design paper by DCWV the Garden Tea Party stack
Stencil by Heidi Swapp