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Welcome Back

In today’s post I will be reviewing; Bend It Shape It. An introduction to Creative Design using Friendly Plastic

Bend It Shape It. Friendly Plastic DVD.

Bend It Shape It. Friendly Plastic DVD.

Product Details

  • Manufacturer/Brand; Creative Force Films; Rare Bird
  • Item number; ISBN 0-9544649-1-5
  • Run Time; 90 Minutes
  • RRP at time of writing: £17

Reason For Buying

After seeing some demonstrations by Liz Welch on Create and Craft, I was really inspired and just had to buy this DVD to learn more about what could be done with the Friendly Plastic. I chose this particular DVD as it covers 3D projects and beads.

Pros/Cons

  • Excellent stand alone DVD, no prior knowledge needed
  • Covers tools and equipment you will need
  • Well Presented
  • Everything is well explained
  • Like a Master Class on DVD
  • Re watch any time you need to
  • Lots of techniques
  • Plenty of scope to use the techniques in your own way

Cons

Haven’t got any, other than now I ‘need’ everything shown on there as I want to get going.

Build Quality

This in an excellent quality DVD not just the content and presentation which I covered above but the production quality is superb. The tutorials are well-lit, perfect sound and superb camera work too. No busy distracting backgrounds. The only music is during gallery sections so no struggling to hear instructions over background music.

Value for Money

Excellent. If you are interested in trying Friendly Plastic for the first time, or have some already that you neglect, then this DVD is for you. A good range of projects and ideas.

Would I buy it Again?

Yes and would recommend it to everyone.

Summing up

Like alcohol ink, Friendly Plastic has been around for a few years but when you first see it, you can’t work out what on earth to do with it. Until I saw Liz on Create and Craft, I didn’t ‘get’ Friendly Plastic at all. Once I’d seen her demos I was very excited and wanted to know more.

Rather than get a pile of plastic and just look at it, I decided to buy the DVD first and find out how to use it. I’m so glad I did, now I feel really inspired about the kind of things I’d like to try to make with it, which will help me choose plastic  in colours I’d like. You need minimal tools and if you have been paper crafting for a while, you will probably have most of them.

I really enjoyed the DVD and highly recommend you get one. The best thing is, that you learn so many techniques and see the projects created all the way through. This gives you the tools, to explore the techniques so you can use them your own way. I had so many ideas for projects I’d like to create, as I was watching. This is like taking a Master Class with Liz, so if you can’t get to a class with her in person, this DVD will be a good alternative.

Now I just need to save up for lots of Friendly Plastic.

Links

Liz Welch is the artist behind the DVD, here are a few of the places you can find her and more of her products. The DVD reviewed today, can also be found in her online shop.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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Welcome Back

In today’s post I’ll be sharing a video tutorial featuring Zig Brushables. These are brush tipped markers, I’ll show you around the pens and then share some techniques using them.

I’ve really enjoyed using these versatile pens. I do hope you will give the techniques a try, they are quick and simple and I hope effective. For more information on the pens, do check out this earlier post where I wrote a review of the Brushables. Please use the links below to find a stockist near you.

Links

  • Kuretake The UK Website with full range of products. You can download a catalogue which will show you entire product range with visual of the entire pallet of colours in the range.

Here are some tutorials, (not by me) that I found on the web.

  • Zig Brushables This is the Brushables page on the Kuretake Website. It includes a video demo of lettering
  • Lettering Demo; Featuring Brushables

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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Welcome Back

Today I’d like to share a picture of my first digital ATC.

My First Digital ATC

My First Digital ATC

About a year ago my lovely husband gave me a piece of software by Serif called Digital Scrapbook Artist v2. Now it had taken me a year of my life and an online course to get to grips with even the basics of Adobe Photoshop Elements, so when I saw the starting screen on DSA2 I admit it I feared it would take as long and it took me a long time to actually get over that and just try it.

Serif; Digital Scrapbook Artist 2 and Daisy Trail 1

Serif; Digital Scrapbook Artist 2 and Daisy Trail 1

There was a lovely lady on Create and Craft/Ideal World demoing the software, and suddenly I got it. The digi kits you can get either individually as downloads from Daisy Trail or as collections on disc are truly stunning and I was lucky that after getting all hyper about the software, my long-suffering husband didn’t give up on me but gave me the rest of the available digi kits as part of my Christmas present. Isn’t he wonderful :)

As regular readers will know I am a member of Stamping Mad forum, and often take part in their ATC swap, well for January Glitter Monkey set the theme to digital, and I was away! A perfect excuse to get out the DSA2 and have a play. After a couple of very entertaining evenings I created the ATC you see above. It’s so much fun! Wish I’d got into this last year, it would have made my immobility much less boring!

Hoping to get the latest version of the software, Craft Artist soon. It’s the next generation of the software and has lots of card templates on it to design onto. If you haven’t heard of any of this stuff, check out the links at the end to find out more.

Links

Hope you have fun, what ever you craft.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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Welcome Back

In today’s post I will be reviewing;

Wink of Stella

Wink of Stella Pens by Zig

Wink of Stella Pens by Zig

Product Details

  • Manufacturer/Brand; Kuretake; Zig Memory System
  • Range; Wink of Stella

Reason For Buying

I was lucky enough to be sent some samples of these new pens, from Kuretake to try out. I have to admit, I was going to be a hard sell on glitter pens. I have a love hate thing with glitter, I love the bling but HATE the mess. Currently the only way I’ll get near glitter is with Ranger’s Stickles Glitter Glues.

Pros/Cons

Make your lettering pop with Wink of Stella

Make your lettering pop with Wink of Stella

Pros

  • Acid Free
  • Archival
  • Pigment Ink
  • Colour base to the ink, with glitter running through it.
  • Colours co-ordinate with other Zig pens in a variety of ranges; Calligraphy markers and Brushables.
  • Works great on; Smooth card like the Rymans one I use for stamping. Also perfect on water-colour card and on stampbord.
  • Works well with; other Zig markers, including Calligraphy and Brushables.
  • Great for adding highlights to detailed stamps and for vintage projects.
  • Super smooth to use, no begging it to work, or keep working like you get with gel pens.
  • The brown, gold and silver are perfect for vintage projects as they are more subtle than other metallics, really nice. The black is also a soft black so if you use it with a black calligraphy pen it looks like a shadow.
  • The clear pen is great when you want to add sparkle without a colour base. Also perfect for snow ;)
  • You can watercolour with them too!!!

Cons

I tried to find some, honest! But I couldn’t find any, these pens did what they are supposed to and more. I have no complaints.

Build Quality

Zig: Wink of Stella pen

Zig: Wink of Stella pen

Excellent! The lids are well-fitting but not to hard to remove. The nibs are 0.8mm perfect for writing and also for adding detailed highlighting to lettering or stamped projects. Ink flow is superb! No scratchy nib over the writing surface, no clogging. You need to store them flat, but I had a miracle revival on a pen! The silver one arrived without its lid on and didn’t work. However when I put its lid back on and left it lying flat on the table for a few hours, it came back to life and has continued to work perfectly! I think this was lucky and don’t recommend you do this but it is a testament to a well designed pen. 

Value for Money

Can’t actually rate this, as at the time of writing the pens have yet to be launched and I have no details of the rrp or the pack sizes they will be sold in.

Would I buy it Again?

YES!!!!! If I’d seen them, I probably wouldn’t have bought them, written them of as glittery and eww BUT I would have missed out! They are so much nicer than glue pens as you can get fine detail, when you first apply them you don’t notice the glitter. When you tilt your project into the light the glitter really pops. They don’t disturb the ink below them, unlike glitter glue. Below is an image where I used them over Distress ink. I love how subtle they are, and would buy more.

Close up of Vintage Floral ATC

Wink of Stella pens, add some sparkle

Summing up

LOVE these pens. I never thought I would like anything glittery, but I love them.

  • Versatile; work as highlights for fine detail images, enhancing lettering or on larger areas by water colouring with them.
  • Subtle; at first glance you don’t notice the glitter, till the light hits it then POW
  • All the bling without the mess; the results are beautiful (if hard to photograph). Stunning glittery finish without gunky residue that comes with glitter glue. The glitter doesn’t shed, for the amount of sparkle these pens pack, the glitter doesn’t rub off! Even when you watercolour with them! Very impressed.
  • Reliability; They work! Simple as that, they do what they say on the tin. Not everything does but these DO!
  • A joy to use and write with.

Links

At the time of writing, I am still awaiting details of colours that will be available & prices, so I’ll update this review with that information, when I recieve it. In the meantime, for stockists near you, check out the Kuretake website for more details.

  • Kuretake UK; Manufacturers of Zig Memory System products.

Come back on friday to see the video demo I made for these pens and some techniques for using them.

Many thanks to Kuretake for giving me the opportunity of trying these pens, they are superb and have become among my firm favorites.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

***Update***

Latest news from Kuretake;

  • There are 13 colours in the range.
  • Create & Craft have these pens for £19.99

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Welcome Back

In today’s post I will be reviewing; Brushables by Zig Memory Sytems

Kuretake Brushables

Kuretake Brushables

Product Details

  • Manufacturer/Brand; Kuretake; Zig Memory System
  • Item: Brushables
  • RRP at time of writing: around £9 for set of 4

Reason For Buying

These pens have been on my wish list for some time, especially after seeing how flexible the nibs were, on a demonstration show on Create and Craft TV. I was lucky enough to be sent some samples and asked to review these pens by Kuretake. 

Pros/Cons

Being a rubber stamper at heart, I put these pens through their paces, not just for lettering but for a whole range of crafting situations. Here’s how I tested the pens and the results

  • For lettering these pens excel, they have super smooth flexible nibs that make expressive styles possible.
  • Colouring Rubber Stamps; Excellent for multi coloured stamping. Resulting stamped image was clear even from a detailed stamp. As when using other pens for this purpose, you will need to huff on the ink before you stamp to keep it wet.
  • Colouring Clear Stamps; These pens work well on clear stamps. I found it best to colour entire image, stamp on scrap card, then re-ink the stamp to use on actual card. This resulted in less beading on clear stamps. Again, they worked well on detailed images.
  • Colouring Stamped Images; On some cardstock the ink did bleed, so do a test on scrap card first. Great on small areas but although the brush tips are great for filling in large areas, as with all pens of this type they did leave lines if you over lap previous strokes. Also being quite so juicy they did saturate the card. Try on card over 160 gsm.
  • Heat Embossing images. I had mixed success with this, small text stamps worked ok if you get the powder on FAST. A lot depends on the paper/card you use and how quick you are with the powder application. Heat immediately as the powder dries fast on the ink.
  • Easy Clean Up; After using the pens on the rubber stamps, if I cleaned the ink off immediately they left no residue on rubber and only slight staining on clear stamps. If you have coloured a larger stamp and the ink has partially dried, you will find some residue of ink. Try using stamp cleaners and it should come off fine. (Not yet tested that).
  • Colour & Ink Quality: Excellent. Bright vivid colours and very juicy pens. Although the pens say they are non bleed, do test them on the card you wish to use them on before you use them on your main project. There was no bleed when colouring a rubber stamp and then stamping onto the card. But for colouring in a stamped image there was some fuzzing 7 bleeding. The same was true if I tried lettering. Just do a scribble test on spare card first ;) There are currently 24 colours in the range.
  • Storage; Big advantage over ink pads, in that the pens are easy to store. Keep them stored flat, so the ink doesn’t all flood to one end or you will get a pen where only one end works! These pens feature double ended nibs, you get a tint of the colour from the other end of the pen. So 2 colours for each pen!
Kuretake Brushables feature double ended brush nibs

Kuretake Brushables feature double ended brush nibs

Build Quality

Brush Tip: The nib is flexible and perfect for lettering, it is forgiving on rubber stamps. The pens just glide over paper making them a joy to use. Some of the pens I received were ex demo and had a furry tip to the pen, this suggests over time they may wear a little. My suggestion would be to keep a separate set for letting than the ones you colour stamps with, as the abrasion from the stamp may cause wear over time.

Lids: The lids fit well and stay in place.

Value for Money

These pens are good value for money, especially as you get two colours per pen. There are 24 colours in the range making a total of 48 (one at each end). Plenty of scope to play with. I would recommend these for new stampers as a top quality product that will last well. A good way to have a generous collection of inks to stamp with.

Would I buy it Again?

Yes, and I definitely want to explore more of their range of pens. Especially the calligraphy markers. I use their Zig Writter for Art Journalling and the Zig Glue pens all the time and find them excellent. These are a quality product by a well-respected company.

Summing up

Great value for money, great for travelling as you can take a large selection of colours in a small space. They compare well to the Tsukeneko pens I have, with the advantage of a much more flexible nib. The only downside I can really find is that, although the manufacturers can supply individual colours to retailers, I’ve only been able to find them for sale as sets of 4, in colour tones. I would have bought these pens before If I could have bought them individually or in sets of say 12 in mixed colours.

If you love lettering you’ll love these pens :) I’m off to practice some calligraphy :) :) :)

Links

Kuretake The UK Website with full range of products. You can download a catalogue which will show you entire product range with visual of the entire pallet of colours in the range.

Zig Brushables This is the Brushables page on the Kuretake Website. It includes a video demo of lettering

Lettering Demo; Featuring Brushables

In the coming months, when there is better light. I hope to make my own tutorial video featuring these pens and show you how to use them with rubber stamps. At which point I’ll add the link to the demo here.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

**UPDATE**

When I posted this review on Twitter this morning, Kuretake sent me this message:

KuretakeUK   

@billiecraftroom Great review! Just to let you know that @Hobbycraft now stock a set of 9 different colour ZIG Brushables in a set.

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Welcome Back

In todays post a video to show how to create a simple greeting card and gift tag, to co-ordinate with the rest of the Gift set.

Greeting Card & Gift Tag - Desktop calendar Gift Set

Greeting Card & Gift Tag - Desktop calendar Gift Set

You Will Need

  • Pearl Card stock
  • Scoring Board
  • Steel Ruler
  • Cutting Mat
  • Craft Knife
  • Ribbon

 

Method

Links

Here are links to the earlier parts of the tutorials in this series.

Hope you have enjoyed these tutorials, I would love to see the results if you have made any of these projects.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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Welcome Back

My usual forum home is still having major problems and I was really missing the community life of the forum. I found this new stamping forum; UK Stampers.

Everyone is so friendly, do drop by and join up and say hi.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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