Monday, 23 January 2017

How To REALLY Get Things Done

So...January...2017! You have some goals, or perhaps just some tinglings of maybes that you want to have a go at doing this year. But you know how it is, you will sneeze and it will be July and none of your to-do list has been to-done.

And you aren't getting any younger...

Oh, wait a minute, this is one of my talks to myself in front of the mirror. 

Hold on, let me start again...

How to Really get things done by Kim Dellow

[I do use affiliate links and there are some in this blog post.]

Hey Guys, want to REALLY get things done this year? Well, I have some tips that I want to share on how you can achieve your goals this year. But I am also hoping that you will share some of your favourite tips too so don't be shy!

So shall we get started?

1. Work out your goals!

This is a subject that I have talked about before on my blog and in my newsletter but it is always worth revisiting and re-evaluating. Now I am a goal setter, but my partner isn't, so I know that not everyone is a goal setter but this really works for me. If it doesn't work for you I would love to hear what does, so do comment below. 

Pick 2-3 goals you want to achieve this year and really focus down on why you want to do them and for what reasons. The more you understand your motives the more you can be true to yourself and set the goals that you really want, rather than goals you think you want to achieve.

This year I am using the Dream | Plan | Do planner from The Design Trust to help me with my goal setting and monitoring as I find that I do need prompts with my goal setting. I find focusing really, really hard as there is so much I always want to do. One of the things that has helped me this year from this book is setting my values and really asking myself why I want to do something to make sure it is the right goal for me and my business this year.

2. Bite-sized chunks

Break down your goals into bite-sized chunks of task that you can do today, over the next week/ month/ 3 months etc.

Put those tasks somewhere visible, stick them on the wall next to your work space for example and refer back to them regularly to keep yourself on track. You will also need to change them and adapt them as time goes on.

3. Plan Your Week

Now you need to turn these tasks into chunks of time. At the beginning of your week make a list of all the things you have to do that week, your work things, home things, AND the bite-sized tasks that you can do this week towards your big goals.

List it all down then allocate the various things on your list to days of the week. There may be things you have to do every day or things that are time sensitive that you need to do first because of a deadline, so roughly fill your week with the tasks.

4. Schedule, Schedule, oh and Schedule

At the beginning of every day, or in the evening of the day before, break your day into units of time that work for you. I like to work in hourly chunks, and I have two peak creative times, one first thing in the morning and another late afternoon so I try to organise my designing and idea generation in those times and work other things around them. But everyone is different and you need to find the time slots that work for you and work around your lifestyle commitments. 

Use your best guesstimate on how long a certain project or task is going to take and don't lie to yourself! Add in a bit of wiggle room and if it is a new project and you have no idea how long it will take, make your best guess and then double the time at least.

Don't forget to schedule in breaks! Very handy wiggle room if you need them and very important to give yourself some breathing space.

Also don't forget to schedule in time-sucking activities like social media! Give them time slots on your day so you do not get tempted to watch all those cat videos on Facebook instead of setting up your new website. Yes, I am talking to you! I know! It is like I can see into your brain! (I am your brain!).

For my scheduling I am using my MAMBI The Happy Planner like a bullet journal to list the times and the tasks and then tick them off smugly as I blast my way through them! If you want to know more about The Happy Planners I do have a blog post all about them.

The MAMBI Happy Planner

5. Stick To Your Schedule

Most important step of all, is sticking to your schedule. If you allocated a slot of time to doing that website hosting research or to write that blog post, don't then spend it watching a cat try to jump on a bed and missing! Or writing that really important response to Jane on Facebook. It can wait until your scheduled break time or social media time. Honest, it can!

But if you are really finding it hard to make yourself do something? Well, a great tip that I got from Lisa Yacob's Best Year 2016 for this is to break the harder tasks down into small chunks of time, like 15 minutes. You can do it for 15 minutes right? Then have a break and move on to something else. 15 minutes every day for a week is better then no minutes ever and not getting it done at all. I'm not sure if the tip is in Lisa's Best Year 2017 planner yet as I haven't finished working my way through it!

6. Keep Reviewing

Check you are getting your tasks done, tick them off at the end of the week and reorganise for the next week and check back on your goals. You are going to need to keep reviewing as you go along, as the goals evolve or as you find out new things that affect the goals, changing and evolving is a good thing. 

And if your schedule isn't working then re-think it, reorganise where you do what task through the day, perhaps your creative time is from 7pm, whatever, make it work for you!

This really works for me and has taken me a few years of working as a freelance creative to develop for myself, it does change and I won't lie it is hard work, but hopefully worth it!

So go on then, spill the beans, what are your best tips for REALLY getting things done?



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Friday, 20 January 2017

My Favorite Art And Craft Products Before Creativation, Creativeworld And Stitches Really Get Going!

If you are an arty, crafty bod then you might know that it is the craft trade show season! Yay! What with CHA or Creativation, as it is now called, just starting RIGHT NOW in the US and going on until 23rd January. Then we have Creativeworld in Germany 28th to 31st January followed by CHSI or Stitches in the UK 19th to 21st February.  So be prepared to see a lot of exciting new products flood onto the market in the next few months! Well, actually, some can take many, many, many months to get over to the Europe, so yep, patience is need!

So ok, before we all go new product CA-RAY-ZZZZ (crazy, in case you weren't sure!), 'coz you know that we will! We can't help ourselves! I thought I would do a run down of some of my current favourite art and craft products that you can get your hands on now to play with and try out whilst you wait for the new stuff to filter through!

[I do use affiliate links and there are some in this blog post, which means that if you buy after using one of the affiliated links I get a small amount of money with no extra cost to you. Thank you for your support!]

In no particular order we have:

1. Gouache Paint

I am just loving painting with Gouache, I feel it is being a little ignored by the craft world at the moment and the designers seeming to be getting all the fun with it. If you haven't yet played with gouache paint it is often described as an opaque watercolour paint, but I think it might be best to think of it as thicker, brighter paint than watercolour but a thinner less 'plastic-y' paint than acrylic, perhaps closer to the chalk paints that have been very popular. Ok, that is a very rough description of it, but I hope it gives you an idea of what it is like!

I'm still playing and discovering what it can and can not do for me, I love the strength of the colour, which makes it perfect for scanning projects and I think that it is why it is strongly favoured by a lot of designers. I'm thinking of doing a longer blog post on these so keep your eyes peeled and let me know if you have any particular questions you would like answered.

2. Watercolour Paper And Sketchbooks

Ok, so am I the only one who gets excited by paper? No surely not! I've tried lots of different papers for lots of different uses and will probably keep experimenting with different ones. There are a lot of papers that I could talk about but I'm going to concentrate on just a couple today as these are top quality at really good prices.

I'll be honest, I am a little wary of some craft companies (not all, but some) that package together 'art' quality paper for a BIG price and the paper just does not hold up to the promise. Shop around guys! Because you can find better quality paper at smaller price points.

Ok I'll get off of my soap box! Here are some of my suggestions of paper that are good quality and at a good price:

  • Curtisward Paper Pads - Curtisward is collaborating the St Cuthberts Mill papermill to bring out a great low price point, high quality watercolour paper. So for example their A4 10 sheets of hot press (that's the really smooth surface one) is £4.79 (plus the postage of course).  Well worth trying out their whole range (which I plan to do btw).
  • Seawhite Sketchbooks - I love Seawhite sketchbooks and if you haven't discovered them yet then I would strongly suggest you try them out. You can find them on their wholesale website, or their customer website and also from places like Curtisward and CassArt and a load of other art shops. They also make branded products so you might already be using Seawhite's products but may not have realised it! Again shop around, their products can be at different prices from different sources. 
  • Fluid Watercolor Blocks - ok so these are not like super cheap but if you have ever tried buying watercolour paper in blocks then you will know that blocks can be pretty expensive. Blocks are great for fast watercolour work, or out in the field work, because they are gummed on at least two sides so that the top layer stays flat, meaning that you don't have to stretch the paper or tape it to a board to do some watercolour techniques. At the moment the re-branded fluid pads (I think they are re-branded and not a new product but I could be wrong) can be found at discounted prices in places like CassArt so grab them! (But leave me some!).

3. Watercolours and Mop Brushes

Watercolours are also still in my top medium to work with list and I play with different brands and different qualities. I don't think I have a complete favourite brand, although I still love the Prima Marketing Decadent Pies colour palette, but that is more for the colours than the paint itself. Again shop around, I have no help for you on what to buy, I am afraid, I tend to go for artist quality where I can and when I spot a discount. But I also have some student and craft quality paints which are useful for testing stuff out and just messing about with.

Teo Yi Chie from Parka Blogs has a great YouTube Channel that is worth watching for watercolour paint comparisons.

Then there are mop brushes or quills. I have absolutely fallen in love with these and have been using the Jacksons Art synthetic quill series 777 or their newer Raven Synthetic mop.

4. Ceramic Palettes 

Alright so one of the palettes in the picture above is actual plastic, and one of the watercolour sets too, but I am really trying to cut down on the plastic in my studio. Let's face it there is just too much plastic everywhere. But plastic is cheap and easy and finding alternatives is actually quite hard. So I've turned to some small ceramic palettes, like the little flower one in the bottom right of the picture above and I am trying out an aluminum one too.

This little seven-well porcelain palette from Curtisward is the cheapest I have spotted so far and is great for watercolour.  If you have any non-plastic alternatives please do let me know! I am not beyond using tableware by the way!

5. Masking Fluid And Fineline Tips.

Ok so my last product is not a money-saver tip and does actually require the buying of two products! You can also find masking fluids that already come in a bottle with a fineline tip. But this is my favourite masking fluid, not that I've tested loads, about three brands in total so far but this one won.

So get the pen version of the Schmincke Aqua Watercolour Paint Masking Fluid, white or blue up to you and swap out the top for the 18 gauge Fineline Applicators top.

Oh yes! Super easy pen applicator. Takes a little practice to learn how hard to squeeze to get which line thickness but it is a very handy little thing! I did try a 20 gauge as well but I think it was too small for the consistency of the masking fluid. Oh and by the way you can get refills of the masking fluid which work out quite cost effective.

These are my favourite art and craft products, well at least this month, so what are your current favourite products? And if you are watching Creativation, Creativeworld or Stitches what are you really looking forward to seeing?


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Wednesday, 18 January 2017

VIDEO: How To Decorate A Wood Block

I'm excited today because I have another new project video to share with you! This week my video share is the last in my current PaperArtsy Make and Take video series and if you love the fabulous Lin Brown stamp range then you are going to love this video!

This week's video shows me decorating a wood block using Lin Brown stamps, Fresco Finish acrylic paint and finishing it off with a bit of transfer foil bling and the Prima Marketing Christine Adolph adhesive rub-ons.

But as well as sharing all the steps, from start to finish, I've also shared some of my favorite design theory hacks and how I like to use them, so sit back and enjoy the video!

[I do use affiliate links and there are some in this blog post.]

VIDEO: Decorate A Wood Block With PaperArtsy Stamps and Paints

Products Used:
Wooden block 20.6 x 9.6 cm, thickness 20 mm, Empress Tree
Prima Marketing Christine Adolph Adhesive Rub-ons Hearts: (UK) That's Crafty; (US) Simon Says Stamp
Stix2 transfer foils - I used copper
PaperArtsy Eclectica³ {Lin Brown} Stamps ELB29: (UK) That's Crafty; (US) Simon Says Stamp
PaperArtsy Eclectica³ {Lin Brown} Stamps ELB30: (UK) That's Crafty; (US) Simon Says Stamp
PaperArtsy Fresco Finish acrylic paints: (UK) That's Crafty; (US) Simon Says Stamp
Vanilla, Teresa Green, Zucchini, Blueberry, Autumn Fire, Chocolate Pudding
Ranger Archival ink - Sienna, Fern Green, Coffee
Sponge or foam

More Videos!

If you want to catch up with the other three PaperArtsy Make and Take project videos then you can find them by clicking on the photos below:

VIDEO: Rainbow Painted Mini-Notebook  VIDEO: Seth Apter-Inspired Canvas Board PaperArtsy Make and Take VIDEO: Decorated Tape Dispenser Project

So has anything jumped out at you from this video series? Any techniques you want to revisit or try for your next project? I would love to know so do leave me a comment!

And don't worry, this series of videos might have finished but I have more planned so keep your eyes peeled here or over on my YouTube Channel for my next art video adventure share!


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Monday, 16 January 2017

Simple Circles For Card Making

Friday was card making with triangles, so Mondays is using circles! And you guys know how much I love circles! Circles everywhere; in my Instagram feed, on my YouTube channel, they have even gotten into a sneak peek at some up and coming products for my PaperArtsy range.

What's that? New stamps?...well maybe! You will just have to wait and see, or you could go and check out the peek over on the PaperArtsy blog if you like!

But back to today's circles!

Simple circle design for card making

Again it is a simple card design but this time I've die-cut some nested circles, slightly off centre to create two circular frames and one full circle. I layered the circle frames on Khadi paper, just as with the triangles on Friday, then added the full circle to the big frame and a die-cut heart to the smaller frame.

This one has more of a vintage feel with the vintage style patterned papers. I quite like how the heart is mostly red with a touch of blue, it adds a nice pop I think.

Close up of a simple circle card design

This was for a birthday as you can see, but the design would work just as well for a Valentine's card don't you think?

And just in case you are looking for Valentine's Day projects a jam jar make over on the Blitsy blog showing how to make this bright little tea light holder.

Looks pretty both with the tea light off and on!

Decorated Jam Jar Votive, showing it with the tealight on and off

Hope you enjoyed the simple circle card design and the jam jar make over project, perfect to start the creative week!

So what are you making for Valentine's day?


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Friday, 13 January 2017

Geometric Designs For Card Making

So I don't think I am over geometric shapes yet! Actually I don't think I will ever be over them particularly in my card making! Ooops, do you feel like you have just walked in part the way through a conversation? Ok, let me back up a bit.

At the end of last year I shared a series of cards that heavily relied upon geometric shapes, mostly stars, and die-cutting. If you missed them you can see all four cards in my blog post un-originally called 'Another Die-cut Design For Men', yeah, my titles need work, I know!

Geometric shapes in card making

Today I have another card to share that falls back on geometric shapes and is actually another card intended for a man. But, as I said last year, geometric shapes aren't just for men you know! Don't see why they should get all the good stuff!

But I digress. It was for a man and it was a feast of lines! Lines everywhere. Lots and lots of straight lines, in the papers I used, in the shapes I cut out, in the lettering style, just everywhere.

But then what do I do? Just when you think 'ok, this is all about straight lines', I go and mount the design on some rough-edged Khadi paper! I know, mad right? I like to keep you on your toes! They call me maverick!

close up of Geometric shapes in card making

Actually they, don't. No one calls me maverick, but hey, if you want to you can :)


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Wednesday, 11 January 2017

VIDEO: Rainbow Painted Mini-Notebook

New video time and another in my PaperArtsy Make and Take video series. If you haven't yet caught up with this series this is the third of four projects. The first I shared was the Seth Apter-Inspired Canvas Board and the second was the Decorated Tape Dispenser Project. I put together all these projects for PaperArtsy and then ran them as Make and Take projects for them at Crafting At Ally Pally in September last year.

But as I've been getting into videoing I decided to video the making of the samples and then share the projects here on my blog as well so that if you managed to do the make and take you have a handy refresher of what we did but if you didn't managed to make, it then you can now do a similar project at home, at your own pace watching the video.

So this week the project is the decorating of a notebook cover.

A painted rainbow notebook cover by Kim Dellow

All using PaperArtsy Stamps from three different designers (one of them me, in case you hadn't spotted my little lion!) and PaperArtsy Fresco Finish acrylic paints.

It is super bright and super textured, although you can't really see the texture in the photo above, but it is! I applied the paint in a particular way, as I show in the video, to give an almost ridges or lined texture to the cover.

And of course strong rainbow effect colours were all the rage last year in the mixed media world and this is a super fun way to add that effect to your projects too.

VIDEO: Rainbow Painted Mini-Notebook

Products Used:
Wooden notebook 8.5 x 11cm
PaperArtsy Eclectica³ {Kim Dellow} Stamps EKD03: (UK) That's Crafty; (US) Simon Says Stamp
PaperArtsy Eclectica³ {Emma Godfrey} Stamps EEG20: (UK) That's Crafty; (US) Simon Says Stamp
PaperArtsy Jofy Mini 53: (UK) That's Crafty; (US) Simon Says Stamp
PaperArtsy Fresco Finish acrylic paints: (UK) That's Crafty; (US) Simon Says Stamp
Snowflake, London Bus, Bourgainvillea, Limelight (or Chartreuse and Cheesecake), Mermaid, Baltic blue
Ranger Archival - Jet Black
Cardstock -white
Golden Regular gel medium (gloss), glue
Plastic card e.g. old credit card or gift card
Spare paper

Here are some close up pictures of the finished cover.

A close up of the texture of the painted rainbow notebook cover by Kim Dellow

A close up of the Stamped images on the painted rainbow notebook cover by Kim Dellow

Enjoy the video!


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Monday, 9 January 2017

AS FEATURED ON: Blitsy - How To Make Colorful Tea Light Holders

I just wanted to pop in today to give you a heads-up I have a new and colourful tutorial for you today, to get your week started with a smile. It's over on the Blitsy blog at the moment and it shows how I turned a small jam jar into this super colourful tea light holder.

[I do use affiliate links and there are some in this blog post.]

Decorated tea light holder project from a jam jar. By Kim Dellow

It is very easy and a lot of fun to do and I even added in some glitter to mine to add a little extra texture. I was really pleased at how the glitter showed with the light, I wasn't sure it would work so that was a bonus! Don't you think that this would be a perfect project for a little Valentine's Day decorating? These tea light holders would look super cute dressing a table for a cosy and special Valentine's meal, what do you think? Just a thought!

Well, if you want to see the whole step by step process it is on the Blitsy blog in my post called 'How To Make Colorful Tea Light Holders'.

My term on the Blitsy Creative team has now ended, but you may still see some more projects from me over on their blog, from time to time, so keep your eye out for them. Meanwhile, I've been collecting up little tea light-sized jam jars to make some more colourful tea light holders!


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Friday, 6 January 2017

VIDEO: Art Slice December Round-Up

Doesn't 2016 seem so long ago now? I mean it has been, what, almost a week since it was 2016? And we have been back to work, planning 2017, drinking tea, all sorts of things! Well, before I completely forget 2016 (who am I kidding, I've already forgotten it!) I want to post my round-up of my December Art Slice videos.

At the start of December I really wasn't sure that I would have anything to share for my December Art Slice Round-up. I will let you into a little behind the scenes secret, my phone is not good enough to take high definition film. So at the moment I am actually using an old point and shoot camera and editing the films on my computer. I then upload them to my phone to put music on and to upload them to Instagram.

Behind the scenes of Kim Dellow Filming her Art Slice videos
[My filming 'studio']

I know, mad right? So, yeah if you could find a more complicated way to do a less than 60 second video I'm sure I would be doing it! You can guess they take me a lot longer than 60 seconds to put together can't you?!

But doing them has been such a help to me, first I have learnt a lot about video editing (and am still learning - obviously), second it has just simply made me do more filming, which was one of my goals for 2016 and is still one of my goals for 2017. The more you do the more the process becomes easier and you become better at it, just as with everything else.

So I would massively recommend that if making videos is one of your goals this year, but you have been finding it hard to get started, then try doing something small to break into it and challenge yourself to do it regularly.

Behind the scenes of Kim Dellow coming up with ideas for her Art Slice videos
[Idea generation and practice before filming!]

But of course the best part for me is if you have been enjoying them! If you have enjoyed any of my Art Slices or have been inspired by any of them, even just one of them, then that has made it all the more worthwhile for me and puts a huge smile on my face when you get in touch to let me know, so thank you to everyone who has!

So are you ready for my December's Art Slices?

Doodle Pattern

I love patterns and doodles and practicing my mark making, so this art slice was a random mark making doodle from my junk journal.

I could probably fill page after page like this, it is very therapeutic, try it!

Junk Journal
Sharpie paint pens - black and white

 Flower Details

Some more flowers and some work on a page which was already covered with dripping experiments I had done to work out an article project from last year with.

This is actually a sneak peek from a larger journal page walk-through video that is on my list to voice over in the future! So keep an eye out for that.

Junk journal
Sharpie Paint pen water-based, Black

Drawing Exercise - Mushrooms

Yesterday I told you about my new daily drawing exercise challenge to myself for 2017 and how you can join in too, well here is the Art Slice video of it in action!

It was fun changing pens, it forces you to think up other ways of drawing the subject, great tip if you are finding it hard to come up with new forms of whatever you are drawing.

Pitt Big Brush Artist Pens
Sharpie Paint pens Ballpoint pens
Sakura Micron Pigma pen
 A4 sketch book

Quick Technique With Crayola Slick Stix

This was actually a request video from Magia (@Magia_Guarini  on Twitter) asking for some Slick Stix ideas.

I really love using the Slick Stix with water to drip and these colours work so well together and blend nicely. If you want some other ideas for both Slick Stix and Distress Crayons I have a video with some suggestions called 'Tim Holtz Distress Crayons Versus Crayola Twistables Slick Stix' you can watch.

Crayola Slick Stix
Canvas board Golden
Glass Bead gel
The Crafter's Workshop Corncob Etching

I hope that you enjoyed my little behind the scenes secrets and December's Art Slices. My next Art Slice will be out on my YouTube Channel at 1pm (GMT) today and at around 7pm (GMT) over on my Instagram channel.


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Thursday, 5 January 2017

The 2017 Dellow Daily Drawing Challenge!

Welcome to the 2017 Dellow Daily Drawing Challenge! Wahoo! Erm what?

Back in December I introduced you to one of my favourite creative exercises in a blog post called 'A Fun Sketching Exercise To Turn Into A Habit For 2017' because I love playing with it and I thought you might like it too.

Dellow Daily Drawing Exercise - Feathers

When I wrote that blog post I was writing it as much for me as for you and I promised myself that I would make the exercise part of my daily habit and not just a couple of times a week habit that it has been up to now. But habits are hard to put in place, as we all know, and it does make it easier if you make yourself accountable to someone. So I thought that I would make myself accountable to you guys and post the practice up on Instagram. I have been for the last few days.

But here is the thing, I was just going to do this myself, but then lots of people have been in touch since I wrote that blog post, and started posting my practice on Instagram, and said that they were going to do it too! So I thought maybe we can all be accountable for each other to help us turn it into a proper habit? What do you think?

Want to join me?

Dellow Daily Drawing Exercise - Sprigs

The Exercise

Ok so if you missed my 'A Fun Sketching Exercise To Turn Into A Habit For 2017' blog post here is the exercise:

1. Grab paper and pencil/pen

2. Draw 30 *Insert One Subject Here* e.g. mushrooms or horses or daisies etc.

3. Make each drawing different

4. Quantity Over Quality!

5. Photo it, post it on Instagram hashtag it #DellowDailyDrawing to share

6. Repeat next day with new subject!

It doesn't require you to be an amazing sketcher, it doesn't have to take up lots of your time or be perfect. The idea is to get a lot of ideas down quickly. With practice you will build up your drawing level, your creativity and idea generation level, your hand-eye coordination and the ability to communicate ideas through sketches. Plus it will help you develop your style, you will soon figure out which ones you like and which you don't, and it will give you a catalogue of unique motifs and ideas to go back over and work up into other projects later on.

Dellow Daily Drawing Exercise - Stars

There will be no prompts, draw what you want, but here are some more subject ideas to get you started:


And if I haven't convinced you yet to give it a go take a look at the wonderful ideas and motifs Kay Whittaker has been doing!

So come on then. Let's do this together! Hands up if you are going to give it a go. See you on Instagram, hashtag #DellowDailyDrawing.


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Wednesday, 4 January 2017

VIDEO: Decorated Tape Dispenser Project

Welcome to my first video project of 2017! It's another from my make and takes that I did for PaperArtsy for the Crafting At Ally Pally show, and this one is sharing how to decorate a wooden tape dispenser with stamping and paint. But don't worry if you don't have a wooden tape dispenser! The techniques I share in this video will also work on boxes, picture frames, well all sorts of three
dimensional items.

A decorated tape dispenser by Kim Dellow using stamps and paints

This three dimensional item is made from untreated wood so I've used the PaperArtsy Fresco Finish acrylic paints directly on the surface. If you are using varnished wood or plastic objects then you may want to treat the surface with some gesso first to provide a surface that the paint can stick to.

VIDEO: Decorated Tape Dispenser

You can see all the steps from start to finish for this project in this video, perfect for if you are thinking about doing a similar project or if you have got your hands on one of these tape dispensers and wasn't sure where to start.

PaperArtsy Fresco Finish Acrylic Paints: Snowflake, Vanilla, Coral, Bubble gum, Caribbean Sea, South Pacific - (UK) That's Crafty; (US) Simon Says Stamp
PaperArtsy Eclectica³ {Tracy Scott} Stamps 01
PaperArtsy Eclectica³ {Kim Dellow} Stamps 03 (UK) That's Crafty; (US) Simon Says Stamp
Wooden tape dispenser
Ranger Archival Jet Black ink
Foam sponge (e.g. Ranger Inkssentials)

I'm looking forward to sharing some more videos with you so keep your eyes peeled for them. Or better still if you subscribe to my YouTube channel and click the notifications button then you will know as soon as my next video goes live.

Meanwhile here are some more pictures of this project!

close up of Decorated wooden tape dispenser by Kim Dellow

Decorated wooden tape dispenser by Kim Dellow

So have you got any decorating projects like this coming up? Let me know and if you have any questions just ask!


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Monday, 2 January 2017

6 Tutorials To Have A Go At This Year

Happy New Year! The New Year is here and I would like to wish you a really lovely 2017, may it be full of creative joy for you.

I have the last of my 2016 work round-ups blog posts and today it is all about tutorials that you might like to have a go at and get your creative 2017 started with!

So let's get straight into it with gel medium!

[I do use affiliate links and there are some in this blog post.]

1. Colour Your Gel Medium

This is a super simple technique to get you eased back into making after the holiday season.

A really fun thing to do is colour gel medium with powdered pigments, you know, like the Ken Oliver Color Bursts or Brushos. They colour medium really well, you only need a tiny amount and they don't change the nature of the medium, so if it is transparent when dry it will still be transparent when dry when you add the colour.

I have a full tutorial over on the Blitsy blog called 'How To Decorate A Mesh Bag With Ken Oliver Color Burst' to show you how.

2. We All Love Gel Skins!

Sticking with gel medium how about gel skins? Even if you have made gel skins before they are so much fun and a great technique to revisit from time to time. And if you are new to them they are really easy to make.

This tutorial shows you a technique for adding texture into your gel skin and the finished project is a free-standing heart decor gel skin piece but it is great for making flowers and other items too, so give it a go! You can find the full tutorial over on the Blitsy blog in my 'How To Make A Gel Skin Heart' tutorial blog post.

3. When Infusions Met Embossing Ink

Fancy a bit of experimenting? Why not try this technique? Grab your embossing ink like VersaMark for example, and some powdered pigment like the PaperArtsy Infusions and give it a go.

This technique works on other powered pigments too like the Ken Oliver Color Burst and Brusho, so why not try them out?

4. Make A Mixed Media Necklace From Old Jeans

Ready to get into something a little more detailed? Then the next project is perfect for you!

This project is all about recycling those old jeans into lovely, wearable artwork. Add a little bit of stamping and some paint, a couple of beads and a chain and you have a beautifully crafted piece of jewellery.

All the steps for this project are on the PaperArtsy blog.

5. Make 2017 Your Year Of Sketching

At the end of last year I shared a great drawing exercise that I have loved doing in 2016, and I am continuing for 2017, in the hope that you would join me and start doing it too!

It is really simple and doesn't need to take a lot of time but do it every day and you will start noticing the differences in your creativity, sketching and style. You can find the exercise in my 'A Fun Sketching Exercise To Turn Into A Habit For 2017' blog post.

6. Make A Box Vignette

Now that you are nicely warmed up and ready to head out into the new creativity opportunities that 2017 holds for you, my last tutorial suggestion is a little more meaty and full of things to get your creative teeth stuck into.

I love putting scenes into boxes and tins and this tutorial shows you, step by step, the making of this little single flower scene in a box using various techniques including different ways to use embossing powders. So great to pick up some tips and to create your own little scene with.

Happy Creating!


To find my other 2016 Round-Up Posts click the pictures below or follow the links listed:

My 5 Favourite Art Videos of 2016
6 Card Ideas To Revisit For 2017
My 6 Favourite Drawings And Paintings For 2016
5 Art Journal Page Ideas To Play With in 2017
My 5 Favorite Oddments Of 2016

My 5 Favourite Art Videos of 2016 6 Card Ideas To Revisit For 2017 My 6 Favourite Drawings And Paintings For 2016 My 5 Favorite Oddments Of 2016 5 Art Journal Page Ideas To Play With in 2017

Feel free to share this blog post on social media. 

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Friday, 30 December 2016

My 5 Favorite Oddments Of 2016

I hope that you have been enjoying my blog posts looking back over some of the work I have done this year? I hope it has been inspiring your creativity and kicking off some ideas for what you want to be doing for 2017?

Today I am sharing a curation of oddment projects that don't entirely fit into my other round-up curation blog posts as they aren't cards, or art journal pages etc, so I have given them their own 'oddments' category.

I'm going to kick off this collection with two tags. The first tag was a sample I made using my new stamp range with PaperArtsy.

Kim Dellow PaperArtsy Stamps tag

I'll let you into a little secret, come closer, I don't want everyone to hear... when I designed these circle stamps I had that little cluster of circle flowers in my head all along. I know, I am circle crazy, but who isn't? What? You aren't? It is just me then? No surely not?

Next up is a tag of a totally different style, less layers and more quick and simple and a tag I made for Blitsy earlier in the year.

Clean and simple quick and easy tag by Kim Dellow

I am a great one for quick and easy and this tag is just a little bit of die-cutting, probably the most complicated thing on it is the layering of the die-cut sentiment to make a three dimensional element and even that was super-simple to do. You can see the steps for it over on the Blitsy blog in my blog post called 'How To Make Quick & Easy Gift Tags' (affiliate link).

The next favourite 2016 project was one that I did for PaperCrafter Magazine Issue 96. Commissioned to do a summer-inspired stage box this is what I came up with:

Kim Dellow's Stage box from PaperCrafter Magazine Issue 96 using PaperArtsy Stamps
[Photo credit: ©CliQQ Photography]

I thought it was cute and being a bit of a diorama fan it was fun to do, if a little more involved than a card of course! Looking at the picture again now I have just realised that they look a bit like they have just come out of a village fete marquee don't they? I didn't spot that before! Or perhaps it is the Great British Bake Off tent?

Anyway, Summer fetes aside, my next share is all about chemistry! Being a bit of a science nerd I do like to stretch my materials and see what they can do so when tasked with writing a blog post to fit a resist theme over on the PaperArtsy blog earlier this year I decided to go on a little bit of a chemistry experiment to find out how to use the PaperArtsy Fresco Finish paints instead of Gouache in the Gouache and ink resist technique.

PaperArtsy Fresco Finish paint and ink resist technique by Kim Dellow

If you do not know this technique it basically uses the ability of gouache to resist waterprook ink, a property that some acrylic paints also have. But not the PaperArtsy Fresco Finish acrylic paint, well until you do what I did, and if you want to know what that was then pop over to my 'PaperArtsy Fresco Finish Acrylic Paints And Ink Resist' blog post to find out more.

So my last share was actually a project that I was involved in in 2015 but the results of the project were released in 2016. So I am only slightly cheating in including this one in my favourite project lists from 2016!

Creating Faces video with Kim Dellow

Trish Latimer, the editor of Craft Stamper, along with Tracy ScottClare Lloyd and myself made a step by step video of how each of us draw faces as part of a collaboration with Traplet. It was really fun to do and great seeing four different styles of face art too. Oh and shameless plug, the online streaming of the videos or physical DVD/blurays are still available to buy I believe! Totally shameless!

Five different projects from my 2016 back catalogue, it's fun looking back and seeing where my art has twisted and turned over the last year.  If you haven't done it already I would suggest you take a look back at your own work and see how your art has changed and developed over 2016. Let me know if you have shared any of your favourites, I always like to see!


To find my other 2016 Round-Up Posts click the pictures below or follow the links listed:

My 5 Favourite Art Videos of 2016
6 Card Ideas To Revisit For 2017
My 6 Favourite Drawings And Paintings For 2016
5 Art Journal Page Ideas To Play With in 2017

My 5 Favourite Art Videos of 2016 6 Card Ideas To Revisit For 2017 My 6 Favourite Drawings And Paintings For 2016 5 Art Journal Page Ideas To Play With in 2017

Feel free to share this blog post on social media. 

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Wednesday, 28 December 2016

5 Art Journal Page Ideas To Play With in 2017

2016 has been a fun year in my art journal, perhaps a bit messy at times but that is all part of the joy of art journaling isn't it? I've been going back through the work I've been doing in my art journal this year and I have collected together some ideas to inspire our art journal work for 2017!

So if you are into your art journaling I hope that some of these ideas will inspire you for the New Year and if you are new to art journaling then it is never too late to give it a go!

[I do use affiliate links and there are some in this blog post.]

1. Don't Resist The Urge To Resist!

Resists are great! Everyone loves a good resist and there are so many different ways to make a resist. Looking back through my 2016 art journals I have found that I use resist techniques quite a lot this year! I definitely wasn't resisting the urge.

A basic resist is about adding a layer to your surface that will resist whatever you put on top of it. In art you have lots of different ways you can do this so try these:

a) The Gel Medium Resist:

Art Journal page made using by Kim Dellow using gel medium resist

Apply gel medium through a stencil, let it dry then add colour over the top. You can see all the steps for this page my 'How To Make A Tim Holtz Distress Crayon Art Journal Page' blog post on the Blitsy Blog.

b) The Embossing Powder Resist:

Kim Dellow using embossing powder as a paint resist

Use stamping and heat emboss with embossing powder to make a resist for paint. Again I have a full step by step tutorial for this project over on the 'How To Get A Faux-Print Look With Paint And Embossing Powder' post on the Blitsy post.

c) China Markers On Yupo

Kim Dellow using china marker resist

China markers, or chinagraph pencils, are a wax pencil that writes on all sort of surfaces including shiney paper like Yupo! So it is great for drawing a resist pattern and you can even use it as a resist for alchol inks. You can find them in art shops and some stationery shops. If you want to see how I made the project above, there is a tutorial on the Blitsy blog in my 'How To Get A Resist Pattern On Yupo' blog post.

2. Make The Most Of Leftover Paint

It gets said a lot in art journaling circles but it is always worth repeating - don't waste any paint! Whatever project I am doing, whether it is in an art journal or another surface I always clean tools on spare pages in my junk and art journals.

It is a great way to get rid of clean page fear, you know, when your mind goes blank when faced with a clean page and you don't want to 'ruin' it! It is also a great way to hook yourself in to your next journal page as flicking through a book of colourful pages inspires you to get stuck in.

Here are a couple of examples of projects made on leftover paint pages, the first one builds on the leftover paint, using it as a background and in the second one I drew and stamped around the leftover paint and incorporated it as part of the image.

Kim Dellow Turning leftover paint into art journal backgrounds

Kim Dellow tuning leftover paint into a drawing

3. Doodle-Fill That Page!

Pattern is one of the things I have been getting into big time this year and I've been having fun filling pages of my journals with random collections of patterns and motifs. This is also a great project for doing over those leftover paint pages too!

Art journal pages don't have to always be a rounded piece of art work they can just be places to play and experiment and filling a page with shapes and mark making is a perfect for an art journal and a great way to build up some of your pattern making skills for other projects.

Kim Dellow filling pages in her art journal with pattern

4. Use Your Ink Refills

So you refill your ink pads with those little bottles of refill ink right? Well you know you can use them as they are as well don't you? Of course you do! And if you didn't, you do now!

It's the often forgotten colouring material, you do not need a lot of the ink as a drop can go a long way.

If you want to see how then guess what? I have a tutorial using refill ink to make this page below, it is in a blog post handily called  'How To Make an Art Journal Page With Refill Inks'!

Kim Dellow's art journal page made using refill inks

5. The Humble Biro

Well actually the humble any ballpoint pen! I love drawing with ballpoint pens, some of you might have noticed! Find a nice ballpoint pen that has a good flow of ink and doesn't splodge ink everywhere and you have a fabulous drawing tool. And it doesn't have to break the bank either, you can get some really good ballpoint pens for practically pennies and it lots of different colours too, so they are well worth adding to your art tool box if you do not use them already.

Art journaling with ballpoint pens by Kim Dellow

I use them for all sorts of projects and they work on a lot of surfaces including paint, like this leftover paint page in my junk journal.

So that is it for now, five ideas to get you jumping and hopefully inspire your Art Journaling for 2017. They are great ones to revisit and build upon so have fun and if you have any of your favourites you would like to share then feel free to leave me a comments below.


To find my other 2016 Round-Up Posts click the pictures below or follow the links listed:

My 5 Favourite Art Videos of 2016
6 Card Ideas To Revisit For 2017
My 6 Favourite Drawings And Paintings For 2016

My 5 Favourite Art Videos of 2016 6 Card Ideas To Revisit For 2017 My 6 Favourite Drawings And Paintings For 2016

Feel free to share this blog post on social media. 

*Heart* you.