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Monday 28 December 2015

Destination Inspiration - December - Terminal #4

Hello all, Alison here from Words and Pictures.  I hope you've all been enjoying a peaceful and prosperous festive season.  This is my favourite time, I think - the quiet period once the major work is done, and you have the 12 Days until 6th January to rest, read, recuperate and enjoy peace and candlelight.  Not too much rest though... there's always inspiration to play, and I've arrived at Terminal 4 of Destination Inspiration this week.

I've unpacked my travel bag to see what I could make with what's inside.  As usual with the final destination of the month, you can see what all the Creative Guides have done with the contents of the luggage at the end of this post, but here's a reminder of just what was in there:

Substrate - ATC
Colour - Festive Berries
Technique - Extreme Masking (Compendium of Curiosities I, p.61)
Product - Remnant Rubs

I have to confess I was panicking slightly at the notion of Festive Berries - those who know me will know that red is not a shade which appears very often round my way.  But once I'd come up with the notion that I could use the Festive Berries for actual festive berries, I felt a bit better!
So here's what arrived on the craft table.

I love working with ATCs, and I suddenly had the brainwave of trying to work with one of Tim's punches as my mask.  I figured the little bird would be the right sort of size to work with for an ATC.

I punched a couple of them, so that they could have a little conversation.  It wasn't the easiest thing in the world holding them down to ink around them, but it was do-able.  It's Ground Espresso at the bottom, and the sky shades from Stormy Sky up to Chipped Sapphire at the top.  (I was working on a plain manila tag at this point, but always thinking of the size the ATC would end up.)

Same tricky process for the stamping - those birds are small and, because I'd punched them out of book pages (first thing to hand, not really thinking ahead), a little fragile too.  But not so fragile that I wasn't able to save the masks to use on another project (as those of you who've seen my Snowflake ATC will know!).

I stamped the starry snowflakes from Tim's Christmas Magic set in Picket Fence Distress Stain, and for the reverse masking, I thought the birds really ought to be musical, so I stamped some tiny music notation in Pumice Stone.  I love that one of the birds has ended up accidentally wearing a little starry crown!  

I then used the gorgeous pine needles from the Winter Sketchbook set to create some plant texture below and around the birds.  The pine needles are stamped in Ground Espresso, and you can see where the Distress Paint snowflakes have resisted the Distress Ink needles.

I decided that as well as berries, I could probably deal with using Festive Berries to create a couple of Robin Redbreasts too.  I applied the Distress Stain with a water brush, adding a touch of Vintage Photo for shading, and trying to get quite a loose, painterly look.  (In the long run, I decided the ink wasn't quite holding its own against the bold colour of the berries, so I added some paint over the top too.)

Ah yes, the berries... they're on one of the fabulous Calico Craft Parts - a spray of holly which I've painted with Ground Espresso Distress Paint so that it would tie in tonally.  Then it was time for the vivid berries.  Although I have the ink, I don't have Festive Berries Distress Paint, but I found that the PaperArtsy Fresco paint in Cherry is an almost dead ringer in terms of colour, so I used that, applied quite thickly to get nice rounded berries.  And that's the paint I used to brighten the robins too.

I almost forgot the final requirement - my Remnant Rubs were hidden at the bottom of the bag! - but just in time I realised I needed to add a little transfer somewhere.  The gorgeous white December text seemed perfect for my wintry little ATC.

As you may be able to see, I mounted it on one of the nice thick Calico Craft Parts ATC blanks - love how this gives it substance.


So, as promised, here's the full selection of what the Creative Guides have been making on their travels this month.

Terminal #4 Alison

I hope you've enjoyed travelling as much as we have this month.  You've got just a few days left to join in with Annie's lovely Vintage Christmas challenge, and with a prize voucher from Country View Crafts and the honour of being one of our Pinworthies all at stake, we hope you'll come and play along.  But do keep celebrating your own Twelve Days of Christmas too!

Alison xx


  1. Oh - this is just beautiful Alison! and SO "Alison" in the blues and browns - the touch of red on bird and berry is lovely - and maybe you will try it again now that you've braved through it's use today!! Your sweet birds, the snowy sky and thick holly look so pretty together! I have loved all of the Creative Guides ATC's with this awesome Extreme Masking technique! Julia xx

  2. Very lovely work and great photos showing what you've done. I just found your blog and look forward to exploring more. Happy holidays! :)

  3. A wonderful ATC Alison, the splashes of red bring it all to life, just beautiful!

  4. Wonderfully composed and executed ATC. Love the addition of the calico parts to add some dimension and fabulous framing of you little birds. Nikki

  5. This is just beautiful - I love the little birds and the touch of red is gorgeous, really adds to the festive feel.

  6. A wonderful wintery ATC Alison using the contents of the luggage bag. A clever way of extreme masking using the punches . Really love the scene you have created. The dark brown tones of the inking, stamping and calico parts draw the eye in perfectly to admire the beautiful wintery sky and you chatty robin redbreasts.

    Not the easiest of contents to work with but all 4 of you talented ladies have risen to the challenge amazingly - produced fabulous ATC's and provided so much inspiration !

  7. Gorgeous, Alison! Love how you did the birds and the gorgeous natural palette! <3

  8. Beautifully done Alison - I love it!!!!
    sandy xx

  9. Delightfully put together Alison, such a gorgeous design. xxx

  10. such beautiful work alison. i love how you did the birds. gorgeous x

  11. Gorgeous ! I especially love those little birds !
    Corrie x

  12. Just finding the time now to catch up a little. Love your ATC Alison. The little birds are lovely and I love how,you used the touches of red. Lovely to see all the ATC's showcased together. Tracy x

  13. Alison, what a wonderful wintery ATC you have created with the contents of your travel bag! I adore the wee robins, stamped with their cheery song and the beautiful dimensional holly and berries. Amazing collection of inspiration from all the Creative Guides for this month's Destination Inspiration, can't wait to see what the New Year brings! Deb xo

  14. I just love that you used red Alison, it looks perfect on the berries and I love how you did the little robins - well done for mastering the colouring with those tiny masks too. Love this! Anne xx

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  16. Wow! It looks super amazing. My co-workers at that saw these photos while I was reading your post, told that it is very beautiful. Totally in a winter holiday mood.

  17. Beautiful little ATC, Alison - when you "do" red, you do it so well! Love the little birds, and the masking techniques are brilliant - perfect for this little gem! Hope you have a happy new year - look forward to seeing what you come up with! xxx Lynn

  18. Alison! Thanks so much for sharing the steps of this mini tag! I love it!!

    Beautiful samples everyone!
    Cheers and good wishes for 2016!
    Jackie ")

  19. Oh Wow!! An amazing ATC! Love your use of red!! Chrisx

  20. Absolutely beautiful Alison! Love the way those pops of red really bring it all to life. Jenny x