Easy Suminigashi Tutorial

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Iron provided by CHI® and Bed Bath & Beyond. Whether taking the wrinkles out of a new bedspread or curtains as the finishing touch on a home décor project, ironing your favorite outfit for a special occasion or flattening paper for artwork the CHI® Electronic Retractable Clothing Iron is the bee’s knees. 

 

SUMINIGASHI!! This marbling technique is so super awesome. It’s one of those projects that doesn’t really require a whole lot of space or preparation. I had everything on-hand for this project, so there was little barrier to entry here. 

HOWEVER, there was a little bit of a learning curve. Check out this little video Hayley and I made about our discoveries through trouble-shooting (the tutorial is at the end if you want to skip to the end there, too). 

In a nutshell, here’s what we found: 

  • Cold water works best
  • You can use soap to help disperse the ink, but you need a large water bath in order to keep the ink from dropping from the surface
  • Use only sumi ink if you plan on using a smaller water bath (we used a kitchen dish for note cards and envelopes)
  • Not all sumi inks work well. Of the sumi inks I have, Yasutomo worked the best
  • We read elsewhere that these colored inks work well, if you want to add color
  • The first paper you pull is often the “first pancake”, don’t stress if it doesn’t work well
  • You can get 3-7 pulls off of one ink application, the ghost images are subtle like Carrara marble

 

Don’t feel like watching the video for the tutorial? Here’s the cliff’s notes version: 

SUPPLIES:

  • sumi ink
  • paper (we loved the crisp results of bristol paper, but anything works!)
  • cold water
  • water container
  • diluted soapy water (only if using a larger container)
  • brush
  • tooth pick or eye dropper
  • the bestest iron ever (yes, a clothing iron)

If you’re doing this project with little people, you may want to add aprons, rubber gloves and a drop cloth to the mix (especially if you’re doing larger ink baths). 

Fill your container with cold water. I chose to use a small container for the video, but I’m on Studio 5 on Tuesday sharing how you can do it with soap and a larger container. So either can be done. 

Get your ink brush wet and load it up with sumi ink. Barely tap the surface of the water and watch the water disperse along the surface. 

Add more dots along the surface, spacing them randomly apart. the longer your brush touches the surface, the larger the dot. 

Get as many dots as you want, until you feel happy with the blank space to ink ratio. 

With a toothpick or eye dropper, drag the tool along the surface to pull and move the ink around. You’ll get little swirls all over. 

Grab your paper and submerse the first paper entirely. 

Pull your print and place on a cookie sheet to dry. If you’re doing envelopes, touch only the surface of the water to the front of the envelope. Hold the envelope by the flap so it doesn’t get wet (otherwise it will seal shut as it dries). 

Now what do you do when the paper dries?? It’s so annoying when papers dry all curly and whatnot. And they will. So iron them! A huge shout out to CHI Heat tools and Bed Bath and Beyond for providing me with a brand-new iron for my sewing and paper crafting. 

I’ve been a Rowenta gal for a long time, but it wasn’t hard to make the switch. It’s light-weight, yet substantial, the plate is silky smooth, the heat time is short, the reservoir for steaming is twice the size of my old one and it has a retractable cord. All wins in my book. If you’re in the market for a new iron, this is it. 

For ironing paper, get a cutting board (something smooth, yet will take heat) and a piece of quilting cotton. Set the iron to COTTON with NO STEAM. Place the cotton over the paper you’re about to iron and press for 15-20 seconds, moving the iron as you go. Flip the paper around  and repeat. The paper may want to curl in the direction of its grain, but it will relax once it cools back down. 

Pretty fun, right? I would recommend doing this in batches to save time. The print or write your desired phrases overtop! 

This post is sponsored by CHI® and Bed Bath & Beyond. All opinions are my own.

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Watercolor Pencil Ranunculus Tutorial

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I’ve had this thing in the queue too long! It’s no secret that I’m a materials hoarder. When I got the chance to score a set of General’s Kimberly Watercolor Pencils, I jumped at the chance. I tried watercolor pencils a long, long time ago (before I really even knew a thing about watercolor painting in general), and didn’t really do well with them. I needed to make up for lost time. 

I really loved how these watercolor pencils turned out. They’re smooth, vibrant, juicy, and blendable. BUT… they aren’t watercolor paints! There’s a real distinction between the two… See? 

I love how I can get very gestural strokes with the watercolor pencils. It adds a lot of movement to the paper. I filmed a quick little tutorial on how to make your own ranunculus in the video below. I do hope you enjoy! 

 

 

Add your own calligraphy to your florals, and you’ve got a VA-VA-VOOM piece that your friends and family will love! Don’t know calligraphy yet? Consider taking my online class. It’s THE BEST (if I do say so myself. ;)). 

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Sewing A Muslin That I Love

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I sewed! I’ve had a few projects in the queue, it’s just a matter of building up the courage and carving out the time to actually execute. But in the mean time, I’ve been sewing muslins and tailoring clothes to fit me and/or the kids in the cracks. 

One of those big projects in the queue is a romper I want to make. Harts Fabric sent me some fabric and the Toaster Pattern from Sew House Seven to try out. I’ve been so hesitant to cut into the fabric, that I wanted to sew up a “muslin” first out of some cheap fabric I found to make sure it fit right. And oh my I’m pleased with how the “muslin” turned out, I wear it constantly. I’m excited to work on my romper, but I just haven’t had the time or mental space to do it yet. It’s more of a fall/winter piece, so I hope to be done with it before the cooler temperatures hit. 

The toaster pattern itself is a dream to sew up. It’s the perfect beginner top to start, especially if you’re just starting to sew knits. The arms and hem can be done in a straight stitch because the pattern is meant to be slouchy, you don’t need stretch there. And there’s no hemming needed for the neckline! It’s a beginner’s dream! 

One of the things about indie patternists is that you never really know how good it is until you bust into it. This pattern is fantastic. It’s easy to piece together (if you’re purchasing the PDF version) and the instructions are clear and logical. It’s a great base for manipulating and making all sorts of fun things as well. I’ll be using this pattern for years to come, I can already tell. :) 

The split hem is a great, contemporary detail. It’s a short-er boxy top, but the perfect length for pairing with mid-rise jeans/pants. I’m 5’6″ and sewed up a size small. Hopefully that helps you with gauging if pattern alterations are necessary. 

To pair with this top, I’ve been loving lighter, pastels! This necklace sent to me by Ash Jewelry Studio has been a staple with this top. Scratch that, it’s been a staple with every darn thing in my wardrobe lately. Blush pink is the new nude, amiright? Earrings are also by Ash, and the perfect lightweight “hoops”. Actually, I don’t own a pair of hoop earrings, but these make the cut because they’re minimalist and light-weight. Seriously, If you’re looking to invest in some fantastic accessories that will go with everything, check out Ash Jewelry Studio.

Outfit details:

Have you made anything recently? Share your favorite things you’ve seen/made in the comments below!

Products were donated, no payment was made for this post or product placement. I just love supporting small businesses that are making and providing their customers with great products. All opinions are my own.

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    Embossing Hand-Lettering & Calligraphy

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    Close To My Heart sent me a sweet care package of embossing goodies to try with calligraphy. I’ve had a blast ever since they showed up on my doorstep! It’s been so fun to make cards and address envelopes with my new gadgets. And now I want every color under the sun to use for embossing! The raised texture is fantastic. And I’ve been able to get reliable results time after time with my pointed pen and my pointed brushes. It’s definitely a worth-while investment. 

    Materials used: 
    Gillott 404 Nib 
    Oblique Holder 
    Strathmore Bristol Paper
    Size 2 Liner Brush
    CTMH Embossing Powder
    CTMH Heat Tool
    CTMH Watercolors
    Glycerine

    I found that the Versamark liquid (for refilling stamp pads) was too sticky to use as ink, so I opted for glycerine. I’m glad I was able to find a suitable substitute as the glycerine doesn’t gum up my nibs or brushes. That said, I do like to use my cheaper nibs and brushes for this particular activity. I don’t want to be destroying my sable hair brushes in the process! 

    Check out the video or read through the post details to find out how to emboss your own lettering!

     

    1. Dilute 1 part glycerine and 1 part water to make your ink. It helps to use a pipette to dilute with water so you have good control. 
    2. Pen or brush your words/phrase/name on the paper. Use a nice quality paper so the glycerine doesn’t bleed. Before lettering, make sure to scrape or drip off excess “ink” so you’re not laying down too much glycerine. It can affect how the embossing happens. 
    3. Place your paper over a scrap sheet, I like using a thin sheet of paper so that I can easily clean up excess embossing powder. 
    4. Pour a generous amount of embossing powder over your design. Tap excess off the paper onto the scrap sheet. Set project aside and funnel excess powder back into the embossing powder jar. 
    5. Heat your design with a heat tool. Keep the tool 2-4 inches away from  your work and move the tool as the powder melts. 
    6. Optional: Add a watercolor wash over your work. 
    7. For best results, the watercolor wash should happen after. The watercolor resists the embossed work, so no need to do it prior. If you do happen to do it beforehand, you may find the glycerine bleeds over the wash and your lines will get fuzzy. 

    Products from Close To My Heart (CTMH) were provided for this video. All thoughts and opinions are my own. The affiliate links used help support this blog and the tools used for making more tutorials, reviews and content. Thanks for your support!

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    Chocolate Ginger Cookies Recipe

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    This blog is becoming less and less about food and more about the creative process. And making these cookies was a truly creative process. Penelope wanted chocolate cookies before church a few weeks ago. I didn’t have any chocolate chips, nor did I want to drive 20 minutes to the grocery store to get them. So I wanted to see if I could get a chocolate cookie by using cocoa powder. I couldn’t find a recipe that either didn’t call for chocolate chips or have a long ingredient list of things I don’t usually stock in my kitchen. So I made one up!!

    I fused a molasses cookie (I wanted to deepen the flavor of the chocolate) and a snickerdoodle. My mom gave me the best recipes for both, so I used those. And these WORK WELL AT ALTITUDE!!!! YAY! We’re at 6400 ft. elevation, so cookie recipes can be problematic and the cookies end up a sloppy mess on the cookie sheet. These hold their shape and stay chewy. ON to the recipe, shall we?

    (more…)

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