This is a unique challenge blog where we are inspired by and focus on the Vintage; shabby; mixed-media; art journaling; industrial, timeworn and steampunk genres and encompass the talent, flair, expertise and ideas of many artists that we are inspired by. We welcome all types of projects - cards, journaling, assemblage, layouts, albums, atcs, altered art in fact whatever you want to share (as long as it is in good taste).

Friday, 22 September 2017

Introducing a very (very) special guest - Seth Apter

Hi everyone, Nikki here with our monthly invited Guest Designer post. It is my great pleasure to welcome and introduce

  Seth Apter

 I am sure he doesn't need much introduction as his style of mixed media art has captured so many of us over the last few years. I have had the pleasure to meet Seth a couple of times and attend his workshops in the UK and not only is he an amazing tutor but fun, charming and genuine.

Seth is a designer for PaperArtsy (stamps and paint), Spellbinders (dies), Stencil Girl (stencils) and Impression Obsession (stamps). His artwork is frequently displayed in exhibitions and he also published author.

Seth is a master of layers, texture and paint. His mixed media style often incorporates found objects - so who better to provide a masterclass on Altered Art - our current challenge theme at A Vintage Journey.


Hi everybody. Seth Apter here. I am thrilled to be a Guest Creative Guide at A Vintage Journey. I have always loved the work shown here and am now happy to be a part of the family.
I am a mixed media artist from New York City with a passion for found object art. I love giving new life to old things. In addition to making art, I spend my time teaching mixed media workshops and designing art and craft products with a number of different companies. My work has been seen in multiple exhibitions, books and magazines. You can learn more about me at my website or my blog.

One of my main activities is searching for supplies to use in my mixed media art. Although anything goes, I tend to favor older, distressed objects. I feel that they already have a history, which automatically becomes part of my artwork. So many people (myself included) work to create a vintage look on new items but there is truly nothing like the look and feel of actual vintage.

Seth Apter 'Colors for China' -  Guest Creative Guide - A Vintage Journey
This piece, Colors for China, began like most of my work - with an object. Or in this case three objects. I have been hoarding holding on to a grouping of very old test tubes filled with paint made for china. 
These became the focal point that I built the entire piece around. I knew I wanted to add an actual frame around the tubes as a way to highlight these beauties and symbolically turn these vintage objects into art. I added one copper and one wooden frame, both vintage. 
Nearly all the materials in this piece, with the exception of the wood panel and a few metal embellishments, are salvaged. Some have been in my studio drawers for years, patiently waiting their turn to be used in the right artwork.
To me, creating found object art is like completing a puzzle. While many wrong answers are tried along the way, you ultimately have to find the right pieces, many of which are not meant to work together, and place them in such a way as to make one seamless creation.


Amazing! What a fantastic creation full of history, detail and texture. I count seven layers that Seth has taken and salvaged or altered in some way and then worked his magic to generate this perfect composition. 
You can see more of Seth's artwork on his website - The Altered Page

Seth - thank you so much for being our guest this month! 

We are back again on Monday with the next Destination Inspiration stopover. There are a couple of weeks left to join in our Altered Art challenge - with your chance to win a Simon Says Stamp voucher or to be selected as one of our Pinworthies.

Have a great (and hopefully crafty) weekend
Nikki and The AVJ Creative Guides

Monday, 18 September 2017

September Destination Inspiration - Arriving At Terminal 3

Hello and welcome to the third Destination Inspiration for September.  Autumn with you today to guide you along the journey with the contents of our travel bag.

Our bag this month is filled with goodness:

Product : Gesso
Technique : Any form of Resist
Colour : Olive Green
Substrate : Chipboard

I decided to play along with our current challenge, Altered Art.  At my job we were all given these lime green journals as gifts from a recent conference.  I thought it would be fun to grunge it up and give it a face lift.  

I painted my cover with clear gesso, then layered a couple of olive green paints over it.  I sanded the edges to let a little of the original color show through, then stenciled a pattern with Archival Ink and a sponge.  

Next, I cut a watercolor panel and embossed this amazing image from the new PaperArtsy Lynne Perrella Collection.  I partially stamped and embossed the script from the stamp below (also LPC) randomly on the perimeter of my panel.  I blended Distress Inks around the face.  In the end, I was unhappy with the embossed face, so I restamped in Versamark Sepia onto tissue paper and carefully adhered over the first image, sponging the edges to coordinate.  The sentiment is by 7Dots.

I embossed this gorgeous chipboard from Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts in copper.  I used Distress Glaze to seal my stamped panel, then applied crackle paste along the edges of the adhered panel.  I wanted to use permanent inks since this will be handled, so I used ColorBox Chalk ink directly to the crackle once it had set.

The ribbon bookmark and elastic closure were both so bright!  I mixed Infusions with water and carefully painted them.  

Here's a little closeup of the textures and embossing resist...

And the finished product, simple, but filled with pattern and texture.  I hope you like it and are inspired to play in our Altered Art challenge.  Join us next Monday for Terminal 4...

Thank you for visiting today!

Friday, 15 September 2017

September Pinworthy Inspiration

Hello and thank you for stopping by, we have some amazing Pinworthy guests with us today to share their interpretations of Alison's 'Altered Art' September challenge.  Please join me in a very warm welcome to Angela of Felix The Crafty Cat, Ioulia of JulD Handmade and Lys of Impression Scrap as they share their wonderful projects with us, enjoy!



Hi Everyone! My name is Angela Radford (Aka Felix the Crafty Cat) so pleased to have been chosen as one of your Pinworthy Guides for this project.

I live in Lincoln UK with my husband and our two Schnauzers, Maisie and Stan. I have been crafting in some form or another for as long as I can remember and was lucky enough to spend my working life teaching Textiles and Art. I must have tried just about every craft going over the years and mixed media is something that I love doing. I cannot resist trying new techniques and testing out new mediums that become available. I enjoy many different styles but Steampunk/Industrial, Vintage and Shabby Chic are my favourites.
I usually start with an idea but somehow the project seems to develop in unplanned ways but I'm sure you understand! There is a full step-by-step tutorial with lots of pictures and details over at my blog today, if you would like to know more about how I made this.

The theme for this project is just my sort of thing and I have so enjoyed making my:

'Altered Art' Mini Journal.

I made this using empty boxes which had contained coffee pods. And this is were I ended up.

I used lots of Seth Apter's dies and stencils for this project. It was so much fun to make.

If you would like to see the full tutorial for making, it is available on my blog here.

Hope you enjoy looking and thanks for inviting me over.

Happy crafting,  Angela xXx


Hello, I am Ioulia from Greece and I am so happy to be a Guest Designer
once again at “A Vintage Journey”. It is such an honour to be here today, thank you so much.

I loved painting and crafting from my early years, but instead of becoming an artist
I became an engineer who loves to create things in her free time.
So, crafting is my hobby. My passion is clay and texture in paintings.
I am impressed by new techniques and altered materials.
That's why, I love this month's theme "Altered art"

I created an altered steampunk ship with recycled objects.
Junk for some are treasure for me.
So, I filled a ship with altered treasures.

I used 3 tiny tuna tins, rusted screw, gears, wire, a damaged watch, pieces of wood,
a steel wire kitchen pot scrubber, nails, burnt lamps, twine, a battery basis,
a sea shell, an old chain and many others small items.
Some of them were made from clay.

Initially, I made the skeleton of the ship and then I filled the three cabins with treasures.

I hope you like it. 

For more details and pictures, I would be glad if you visit my blog, julD handmade.
Also you can find me here:
Facebook: julD handmade
Pinterest: julD handmade


Bonjour !
I’m so happy to be once more invited on AVJ , among this fabulous team ! Thanks so much!

I’m Lys and I live in a village in south west of France. After crafting had been here all my life, I discovered scrapbooking and built pages to cherish my family memories, then I jumped into Mixed Media some years ago. I found in my daily life many sources of inspiration, but most of them come from my sensations and feelings. My full time job – psychologist- makes me explore creative resources of people I meet and who need help, but I also need to express myself through creations to keep my mind balanced! So I go from feeling to small bits of this and that, and start to build a story…

When I saw the theme Alison chose for this month, I knew it would be hard to choose a substrate, as I hoard so many
“things-I-should-waste-now-but-which-could-be-perfect-for-a-project-I-will-make-some-day”! I chose the most obvious example: a broken glass which should have directly gone to the bin.

First I thought about filling the (nearly) globe, then, as I looked at the string bag which contained the shells I was working with for another project, it made me think of those ancient fishing floats that now are for decoration. This is what I came up with:

It seems the float has collected many things during its journey in the sea,

like seashells and oyster’s pearls… there’s even an octopus!

I will be happy to show you the process on my blog

Thank you!


Truly inspired and inspiring projects from all of our amazingly talented Pinworthies, don't you agree?!  Thanks so much again to Angela, Ioulia and Lys for sharing their art with us all and hope that you too will join in our Altered Art challenge this month, can't wait to see what you link up!  Happy creating,

Deb xo

Monday, 11 September 2017

September Destination Inspiration - Arriving At Terminal 2

Hello and welcome to the second Destination Inspiration for September.  Tracy here with you today with our set of ingredients for September.

This month we are using the following products:

Product : Gesso
Technique : Any form of Resist
Colour : Olive Green
Substrate : Chipboard

I opted to create a card this month for a loved one. I don't often use Olive Green so this made a lovely change to step away from my usual colour choices.
I began by placing the Tim Holtz Chevron Layering Stencil onto a piece of white card (4.5" x 6.5") and I then dabbed Gesso over the stencil using a piece of Cut 'n' Dry Foam.
Remove the stencil and then dry the Gesso with a heat tool.
I found the perfect colour 'Olive Waistcoat' by IndigoBlu for my background. I simply brayered the paint over the Gesso'd background and then I used a damp babywipe and removed the paint from the Gesso areas. The Gesso resists the paint perfectly.
Dry the card with a heat tool.
Paint a chipboard heart with 'Olive Waistcoat' paint, dabbing the paint onto the heart to add further texture and then dry the paint with a heat tool.
Place the Chevron Layering Stencil onto the chipboard heart and then dab Gesso over the stencil.
Apply 'Olive Waistcoat' Paint onto the background stamp from the On The Farm Stamp Set, dabbing the paint lightly onto the stamp using a piece of Cut 'n' Dry Foam.
Stamp the background image onto a piece of fabric and then adhere the fabric onto the background of the card.
Ink the Simple Sayings Sentiment with Black Archival Ink and stamp onto the chipboard heart.
I adhered the heart to the card adding cotton threads behind for added texture. I also included a circular piece of rusty wire stapled into place using my Tiny Attacher.
I also included a smaller chipboard heart for further interest.
I added a couple of lengths of decorative tape and a sentiment from one of Tim Holtz tapes. I also added some delicate splatters of white paint.
I added a touch more stamping using the same background stamp, this time with Black Archival Ink.
I love how all the layers are visible and the Gesso Resist in the background really lifts the whole design.
I also added some paint lines around the edges of my card using black paint and an old credit card and also included a couple of Index Clips for added interest.

Hope you enjoyed the second leg of our journey. If you would like to see how Jennie was inspired on the first leg of our journey then you can see Jennie's fabulous step by steps HERE.

We have a fabulous challenge this month ALTERED ART hosted by Alison, the Creative Guides have created some wonderful pieces to inspire you this month.

Please pop back next Monday when another Creative Guide will be taking you through their use of the travel bag contents.

Thank you for joining me today.


Friday, 8 September 2017

Winners and Pinworthies for our August Challenge: Watercolour .

Hello Everyone 

Welcome to our Winners and Pinworthies post for our August Challenge: Watercolour. 
We had some fabulous entries and the Creative Guides really enjoyed viewing your creations and selecting their favourites. You are all so talented!

So lets begin with the Winner of our Sponsored prize as selected by Random Generator...

Congratulations Monika!
Your prize details from our generous sponsors for this challenge, Craft Obsessions, will be with you shortly, as well as your Winners badge to display on your blog. 

Now on to our chosen Pinworthies. It is always difficult for us to narrow our choices down to just 3 with so many wonderful and worthy submissions but after much deliberation here are our Pinworthy winners.

In no particular order...

Congratulations to our Pinworthies. You certainly worked wonders with your watercolours! 
We will be in touch shortly with your badges and invitations to be Guest Designers here at A Vintage Journey in the near future. 

Thank you so much to everyone who joined us in this Challenge. We really do appreciate all your entries and always enjoy seeing all your creations.
We hope you will join us this month for Alison's fabulous challenge: 'Altered Art'.
All the Challenge details and an inspirational gallery of projects created by some of the Creative Guides can be located here. 
One of us will be back Monday to share the latest Destination Inspiration so until then
we wish you all a lovely weekend.

and all 
the Creative Guides

Monday, 4 September 2017

September Destination Inspiration - Arriving at Terminal 1

Hello and welcome to the first Destination Inspiration for September.  Jennie here with you today with a whole new set of items in the travel bag.

Let me introduce you to the wonderful things we are playing with this month:

Product : Gesso
Technique : Any form of Resist
Colour : Olive Green
Substrate : Chipboard

Here in the north Autumn has very much set in and yet there is so much green around in the leaves on both the trees and the flowers. So with this in mind I decided to create an "autumn falling leaves" board but with green leaves.

I started with a chipboard base and used some old dressmaking patterns and loads of multi medium to create a textured background. I then applied three coats of Gesso and a little more texture along the bottom using a much loved stencil.

I then spritzed the whole lot with PaperArtsy Olive Tree Infusions and used loads of water to get this lighter effect. I love how there are tiny little flecks of orange in there too, so not all green!

Three of my travel bag items used at this stage.

Turning to resist techniques was my next step as I wanted to do something a little different. I have seen wax resist/faux batik techniques on Pinterest but have never tried it. I spent some time watching many videos.  It was all fascinating but in the end I had to just get stuck in and have a go. There are no pictures of the process as it all happens rather quickly!

  • the first step was to emboss a piece of wax paper (I used the Tim Holz Papillon Embossing Folder)
  • secondly I placed this between two pieces of reasonably heavy cardstock 
  • thirdly I ironed the tag sandwich however do make sure you have them on a wood block so they don't sink into the ironing board ...... ! and yes do turn off the steam ...... ! (took me a few goes before I worked these out!)

You can't see much on the tags at this stage but when inked, or in this case spritzed with the Olive Tree Infusions beautiful batik style patterns emerge on the paper.

I die cut my leaves from the tags (using Tim Holtz's Tattered Leaves die) and then added Gathered Twigs Distress Ink around the edges to give them a little definition.

Then it was down to adding them to the background.

I added a little text paper (softened with a coat of watery gesso) to make the leaves more prominent .....

I also added some glass beads which look like water drops .......

This lovely quote seemed most appropriate.

And finally as I still have a few tough daisies left in the garden borders I decided to finish off with an Autumn flower.

Unfortunately since I made this little project we have had horrendous gales and torrential rain, so the falling leaves are not really falling but going in a rather horizontal direction past the house!

Thank you for stopping by for this short tutorial today. Do please pop back next Monday when another Creative Guide will be taking your through their use of the travel bag contents. And of course check out our new challenge ALTERED ART and the wonderful pieces made by the Creative Guides.

Thank you for joining me today.

Jennie x