Words I will journal by.

Create. Learn. Try. Believe you can.

Sunday, 21 February 2016

A mini mail art challenge

Just a quick post today to offer a bit of info as to how I made my mini envies and little ATCs to go inside them. This was for a challenge I set at the beginning of January for the Mini Marvel webpage group that I host. The challenge was to create 5 mini envies on a particular theme and to send one to 5 swap partners. It's been great fun and the quality of the art work is fabulous! Here are my completed envies. I chose a 'Cat' theme.

The envelopes are the smallest W.H.Smiths sell, I think. Just slightly larger than an ATC size. I am a little worried that the postie will actually deliver these, but life is all about challenges, right? The Cat stamps are by Katzelcraft. Cute aren't they? I bought these from 'That's Crafty'. I was in the middle of chaos when I completed these due to a water pipe leak in the kitchen and dining room so was limited for space at the time. Therefore, I stuck to just a few resources. Ordinarily I would use paint - my favourite medium, but on this occasion I resorted to Ranger TH dye ink pads as they were easily accessible. After gessoing each little mini brown envie, both sides, I used Tim's technique of squishing the ink pad down on the craft mat and squirting water on it before swooshing the envies through a variety of colours. I love this technique because the result is always varied and interesting. Doing both sides means a lot of waiting for things to dry or heavy use of the heat gun! They did become very wet at times but I think the gesso helped a lot. I then used various stencils and some of Kate Crane's hand made stamps to create the backgrounds using a variety of dye ink pads and Archival in complementary colours. Then I stamped the cats on both sides and used my lovely prisma coloured pencils over the top of the existing layers. I added some labels from a 7Gypsies sticker sheet  and then stuck on the labels. Finally I added borders around the envies and the label. 
Now, there was no expectation to put anything inside each of the envelopes, and some of the ladies taking part have included things and some haven't. However, I wanted to make ATCs to put inside mine, so I did.
I only needed 5 but I always like to make extra ' just in case'. This time I used one of my favourite little cat stamps ever! This is designed by Clare Lloyd for PaperArtsy. It's from the ECL07 collection. I love this set. Here:

The hats are from a Hat cube stamp by Stampotique. Love them! Still using Ranger TH dye ink pads and Leandra's corner, corner, side technique, I quickly added a mix of colours to each ATC. I then used one of Clare Lloyd's new stencils to add layers over the inks.

This is such a versatile stencil. I'm using it all the time! I then used a couple of PaperArtsy mini stamps and Emma Godfrey's scribble circle from one of her new stamp sets for PaperArtsy, EEG15, to build up the background. When these were dry, I mixed some Golden light modelling paste first with PA Fresco Bubble Gum, then South Pacific, and pressed this through a PA number stencil: PSO21. Love that stencil too! 
So, all that remained was to colour my hats and cats, which I did with my prismacolours, add some doodling and they were finished. All ready now to go inside their envies and put in the post. Fingers crossed they all arrive safely! 

Thankyou so much for stopping by. I would love you to leave a comment so I know who you are and so I can visit your blogs too! 


  1. wow Chris these are gorgeous!!! Can't wait to get mine lol xxx

  2. the cats are so cute on your atcs and the envelopes look fabulous. considering the difficulties you were facing you did brilliantly!

    1. Thanks Helen. It was nice to go back to using the dye pads again actually!!

  3. Ha, I've tracked you down! Thank you so much for visiting my blog, Chris! I absolutely love your envies and ATC's! They're colourful!