Monthly Archives: September 2013

My October Challenge

I have my paper and tools ready.

I have my paper and tools ready.

I have given myself a challenge. Every day, for the entire month of October, I will post a photo of paper art that I have worked on or finished that day on my facebook page, facebook.com/mypaperarts. Some of my daily art will eventually turn into blog posts here. Some will end up in the recycling bin. I thought it would be fun to show both my successes and my failures. Well, maybe not fun, exactly. No artist likes showing their failures. But it will let you see my process of work and inspiration, and it will stretch me to share my work this way.

Feel free to join me on this challenge. Share what you are creating every day this month and tag it #MyOctoberChallenge.

Join me on facebook.com/mypaperarts

Enjoy, Candy

Autumn 2-Toned Box

 

Autumn 2-Toned Box I made for my guest blog post.

Autumn 2-Toned Box I made for my guest blog post.

Just a quick note to say that I have just had a guest post featured on the blog, Paper Pastries.

Enjoy, Candy

Autumn Leaves Paper Wreath

My finished Autumn Paper Leaves Wreath.

My finished Autumn Leaves Paper Wreath.

Some time back, I saw a burlap-leaf wreath kit in a catalog. Now I don’t particularly care for burlap, but it got me thinking that it would be fun to make a wreath of my own using paper leaves. I have no idea how big the wreat was in the kit, and I can’t even remember which catalog I saw it in But that’s usually the best way for me to go about a project —with a semi-vague idea of what I want to make. That way I’m on my own and not trying to make something exactly the way someone else did.

I started by cutting a piece of cardboard into a circle. I used a dinner plate as my template.

I started by cutting a piece of cardboard into a circle. I used a dinner plate as my template.

This was just a fun project where I didn’t worry about using archival materials. Some of the papers are probably archival, but the cardboard I used for the back of the wreath is definitely not. I used one of my dinner plates as a template for the circle. A compass would work as well, but I tend to work with whatever is close at hand when I jump into a project. I used PVA as my glue because it was nearest to me, but just about any craft glue would work

My first wreath came out fairly well, but it turned out that I hadn’t alligned the leaves as well as I could have. To solve that problem on my second wreath, I drew concentric circles about 1″ apart and lot of radius lines so I could make sure my leaves were all pointing towards the center of the circle. It kind of looks like a dart board or archery target. I also added an inch all around to the cardboard of my second wreath before cutting it out because I decided I wanted it to ba a little larger than my first one. Mat board or foam core could also work for the backing of the wreath.

Here you can see the concentric circles I drew on the cardboard to help me line up the leaves.

Here you can see the concentric circles I drew on the cardboard to help me line up the leaves.

For my leaves, I made a template out of card stock. After making a shape I liked, I cut it out of the card stock. The template is the shape of half a leaf, so I would cut out a piece of paper 1 and 1/2″ wide and 3 and 1/2″ long, fold it in half, trace around my leaf template in pencil then cut it out. Do you have any idea how many leaves I had to make? Cutting out all those leaves took a lot of time. But, I love the result.

Here is how I started my first paper wreath.

Here is how I started my first paper wreath.

This was my first Autumn Leaves Paper Wreath.

This was my first Autumn Leaves Paper Wreath.

Until next week, Candy

Halloween Envelopes and Ed Emberley’s Halloween Drawing Book Review

This is a 6" by 9" manilla envelope. The address will go to the left of the Spooky House.

This is a 6″ by 9″ manilla envelope. The address will go to the left of the Spooky House.

After a hectic week that included driving over 20 hours in three days and attending the funeral of a dear family friend, I decided I needed to make some upbeat, crazy fun art. So, I got out my Halloween box and fished around until I found a book I had purchased a number of years ago, Ed Emberley’s Halloween Drawing Book. The book is written for children (hey, I’m a kid at heart) and uses just a few basic lines and shapes for most of the drawings.

This is my copy of Ed Emberley's Halloween Drawing Book. There is a newer version currently in print.

This is my copy of Ed Emberley’s Halloween Drawing Book. There is a newer version currently in print.

Making Halloween envelopes sounded like fun. I love sending and receiving mail—real mail,the kind delivered by the post office—and I love to make special envelopes for my friends. For the first envelopes I made for this project, I used an 02 Pigma pen because it was what I had handy. It took me a long time to color in the black, so I would suggest a larger nib if you decide to make some of these yourself, especially the Spooky House. When I got to coloring the ground, I used my Pentel brush pen to color it and that took much less time to do.

This is a #10 business envelope with the address written with a white gel pen.

This is a #10 business envelope with the address written with a white gel pen.

The step-by-step instructions in the book are very easy to follow. There are symbols below each step of the drawing, and it is easy to see the progression. I purchased my copy of the book years ago, so I checked on Amazon to see if it was still available, and it is, in what looks like an updated version at a higher price. Ed Emberley has a series of books, and though I have only tried out this one book, I think his other books would also be a whole lot of fun for children (and some adults too).

My next project will be to make a drawing based on the instructions in the book, scan it into my computer and then print multiple copies of it. After all, it can take a significant amount of time to make some of the more complex drawings, and as lovely as they are, I have other art I want to be doing too. However, for keeping children occupied, maybe you will want to suggest they make all their drawings as originals.

Enjoy, Candy

Decorated Candy Boxes

These started out as white candy boxes.

These started out as white candy boxes.

My friend Jill gave me 100 candy boxes. These are the boxes a pound of fudge usually comes in. Mmmm… fudge. Jill said she was sure I would find something fun to do with them.

Now, these weren’t simply candy boxes. These were flat, white, and hadn’t ever been folded into box shape. In other words… these were canvases that could turn into boxes. How could I not jump to the challenge? But what to do?

Since my garage is still paste paper central (see the posts for the last month for details), the obvious thing to do was to try my paste paper paints on them. Well, once I started, I couldn’t stop (that seems to happen a lot to me when I try something new). Anyway, here are the results of my playing.

This is what I started with, 100 white flat unfolded boxes.

This is what I started with, 100 white flat boxes-to-be.

This is what the plain white box looks like when it is folded.

This is what the plain white box looks like when it is folded.

And this is what I turned on of the boxes into. This box is Christer's favorite.

And this is what I turned one of the boxes into. This box is Christer’s favorite.

This is Paul's favorite box.

This is Paul’s favorite box.

Fall colors on this box.

Fall colors on this box.

Teal and copper box.

Teal and copper box.

My favorite box today. I am sure I will have another favorite box tomorrow.

My favorite box today. I am sure I will have another favorite box tomorrow.
One of Gayle's favorite boxes. She couldn't make up her mind.

One of Gayle’s favorite boxes. She couldn’t make up her mind.

Another of Gayle's favorite boxes.

Another of Gayle’s favorite boxes.

And another of Gayle's favorite boxes. Gayle loves purple.

And another of Gayle’s favorite boxes. Gayle loves purple.

This is the box I'm giving Jill as a thank you. I wrote her name on the top of the box.

This is the box I’m giving Jill as a thank you. I wrote her name on the top of the box.

I had a lot of fun making these boxes. I actually made a lot more than what I showed you in this post. For those of you who want details on how I made these, I used paste and acrylic paint and I didn’t wet the boxes before painting, which I do with paper when I make paste papers. The boxes did curl just a little, but were fine once they were folded.

Enjoy, Candy

P.S. Does anyone have enough fudge to fill 100 boxes?

Napkin Fold Card: Part Two (including instructions)

This is how the card looks when closed.

A closed napkin fold card.

You may have seen my post last week about napkin fold cards. I have continued making napkin fold cards since then. This time I used my own calligraphy for the greeting inside the card.

And, as I promised last week, I’ll be showing you the steps involved so you can make one too. But before I show you the step-by-step photos of how to make your own napkin fold card, here are the open and closed views of three of the cards I made this week.

This is the inside of the above napkin fold card. It says "grandchildren are the dessert in life."

This is the opened view of the above napkin fold card at the top of the post. It says “grandchildren are the dessert in life.” 

This is my thank you napkin fold card closed.

This is my “thank you” napkin fold card closed.

Thank you card open. The photos did not quite capture all the gold that is in the paste paper.

‘Thank you’ napkin fold card open. The photos did not do justice to the metallic gold in the paste paper.

This is the napkin fold card closed.

This is the napkin fold card, closed.

The inside of this napkin fold card says, "Take only one day at a time."

The inside of this napkin fold card says, “Take only one day at a time.”

 

And now, as promised, here’s how to make your own!

I start with an 8" square of paper. I suggest you use a light weight card stock to start with. Score and fold 2" in from each side. The photo shows how it should look when you have folded the paper.

Start with an 8 inch square of paper.
I suggest you use a light weight card stock to start with.

Score and fold along each side, 2 inches in.
The photo above shows how it should look after you have made the folds.

 

The next step is to find the center of the paper. With a ruler on diagonal corners, mark the center with a pencil. Repeat for the other diagonal. Note the pencil "x" in the center in the photo above.

Find the center of the paper.
Line up a ruler along two opposite corners and draw a short line in the center with a pencil. Repeat for the other diagonal. Note the pencil “x” in the center in the photo above.

 

Next, fold each corner to the center of the paper using the pencil "x" to see the center. Make a firm crease for each fold.

Fold each corner to the center.
Fold in each corner, using the using the pencil “x” to align it with the center.

Make a firm crease for each fold.

 

This is how your paper should look with all the folds. Make sure the folds are well creased.

Unfold the paper.
This is how your paper should look after you have made all the folds. Remember that folds need to be well creased, because you’re going to be folding them in different directions.

 

2013 Napkin Fold Inst 5

Pinch in the corners.
Do you see how the folds meet at the center of each side? Those are the vertices we’re going to pinch in to the center. This will go against the direction they were originally folded in, so again, make sure they were creased well.

Gently push in each of the four vertices on the sides of the square as shown above. You will end up with a smaller square that looks like it’s made of four squares.

 

2013 Napkin Fold Inst 5-2

As you pinch in all the corners it will look like the above photo.

 

2013 Napkin Fold Inst 5-3

And finally it will look like this above.

 

2013 Napkin Fold Inst 6

Open the center.
Now that you have folded the card closed, you need to open up the center of the card. The four corners of the 8 inch square are now all meeting in the center. Take each inside corner and fold it back to the outside corner as shown above.

Make a firm crease for each fold.

 

Next find some decorative paper to use for embellishing. Cut two 3 3/4" squares and one 2 1/2" square. Cut one of the 3 3/4" squares and the 2 1/2" square along the diagonals as shown above.

Make your embellishments.
Choose some decorative paper to use for embellishing.

Cut two 3 and 3/4 inch squares and one 2 and 1/2 inch square. Cut the 2 and 1/2 inch square and one of the 3 and 3/4 inch squares along the diagonals as shown above. You will end up with one square, four larger triangles, and four smaller triangles.

Also cut a piece of white paper 3 and 1/2 inches square on which you can write or stamp your greeting.

 

2013 Napkin Fold Inst 8

Attach the embellishments.

Now attach the square decorated paper in the middle of your card, white paper with the greeting centered on the decorated paper, the large triangles and the small triangles on four outside corners.

 

2013 Napkin Fold Inst 9

The finished card can now be closed in a variety of ways. I like to use coordinating sheet half inch sheer ribbon.

I made my napkin fold cards with very few tools. I cut my squares on a paper cutter. I did the rest of my cutting with my utility knife. I attached the triangles with double sided tape. I usually use a bone folder to make sure my creases are firm, but it is not necessary if you are careful to make good firm creases by hand.

You can check out last week’s blog post Napkin Fold Cards: Part One.

Enjoy, Candy