Monday, 21 May 2018

Speshink DT Neil. Gypsy Rose Journal Page.

Is it Monday yet?
Of course it is and that means I get to share with you another amazing creation from one of my Desin Team Members.
Today we have Neil sharing a beautiful journal page with a doodled Gypsy Rose. I love how delicate she looks. xx
I hope you enjoy it as much as I do xx.

Good morning everyone.
I trust that this finds you all well.
This morning sees my first post as part of the Mark Gould Design Team. This morning is a fairly simple project as I am just warming up.....

It's all very exciting to see how Mark's creative journey has grown from the time I first met him in one of my classes all those years ago and I am loving his stamp range.

For my first project I have used Gypsy Rose as the focus point of this journal page.  At the moment my life is in the process of some pretty dramatic changes and in the midst of the busyness and stuff happening (as reflected in the background) I need to remind myself to dream......
The background was made with a selection of masks, Inks etc and a random assortment of stamps. Lots of circles.....


I love pen and ink work, just doodling, Zentangle, taking a line for a walk, whatever you want to call it lol and these stamps are perfect for this. I stamped the images onto card and carry them in my bag with a few pens and when I have a moment I just pattern away......it's very relaxing and therapeutic.



When I finished her I drew a circle below her and added the word Dream. I detail cut out the design and put it onto the back ground.


I still have some words to add, but as those are more personal I took the photos before they were added.

Mark's stamps can be found at Chocolate Baroque HERE or in his shop HERE


Monday, 14 May 2018

Speshink DT Louise. The Gent. Cards

Thank you for stopping by and joining me for the second post from the new Speshink DT. Today we are joined by Louise Partridge of Loppylou Cards.
Louise has created two beautiful Monochrome cards Using my 'The Gent' Stamp available from Chocolate Baroque or you can find it in the shop section at the top of my blog. xx
I'm in love with the layered and detailed backgrounds and the use of a monochrome pallet for each card.
If you have some time stop on by Louise's blog and see more of her beautiful cards.

Louise starts with this beautifully blue little number.


1. The Gent by Mark Gould was stamped in Denim Blue Ink and coloured in with 4 pencils Spectrum Aqua Blend Indigo and Deep Blue Prismacolour Silver and Faber Castell Sky Blue it was blended with a Dove blender pen.The Eyes were highlighted with Glossy Accents I then cut out the image.
2. For the background i took a square white 250 gsm card brushed a base coat on in Reeves Acrylics in Raw umber/paynes gray and a pebeo ultra marine blending the wash together
3.i then stamped onto tissue paper with a crafty individuals stamp "keep calm and carry on C1 334" ripping it up into large bits i glued it over the painted layer with Mod Podge


4. Then stencil with crosses and a cracked stencil with Antique Gold and Deco art metallics Purple Pearl. Tone it all down with a light brush over of white acrylic.
5 Then mix Deco Art texture sand paste with some ultramarine blue, raw umber, and another bit with Purple Pearl and the blue. The paste is then applied through a stencil to add texture.
6. With some white paint on my finger i gently rubbed over the dried texture to highlight. I darkened the edges with distress blueprint sketch
7 Then go in again with stamps to add further depth and to finish background i splattered antique gold and ultramarine blue.
8 With the cut out Gent i glued him down in the centre of background and mat and layered the square to black card and finished onto a white card So as i say keep Calm and stay Blue.

Louise's second card is this fab manly black and grey number ;)


  1. The Gent was stamped in Black Versa fine and coloured in Prismacolour black and a HB Pencil. and cut out adding glossy accents to the eyes for sparkle.
  2. I then took some paper and soaked it in a coffee and tea mixture to stain the paper then dried it off in an oven at 200 oC and then ironed it flat.
  3. I have a collection of vintage bus tickets i found at a flea market. So i placed them together on a sheet of paper and photocopied then onto the stain paper in black.
  4. Cutting up the images of the bus tickets, I collaged them with glue onto a square piece of card inking up the edges with black ink.
  5. With my machine to add some texture i machined around the edge.
  6. To add more depth to the background I stencilled with white gesso using a stencil from Imagination Crafts called Casablanca.
  7. To finish the image of the gent was glued to the centre and then mounted onto a card "Travel well Bobby ".  


Thank you all again for stopping by. Head back next Monday as I introduce another new member of the Speshink DT and share a new creation with my stamps. xx


Monday, 7 May 2018

Speshink DT Glo. The Gent.


Welcome, Welcome, Welcome, and thank you for stopping by on this very exciting post as it is the first post from my new DT and I hope you guys love it as much as I do.
Today's make is from Glo.
I will have new makes every Monday from one of my amazing Dt members so keep heading back to see what they have created for you xxx.


Man, where does the time go? Seems only yesterday I was trying
to get back into creating and blogging more often. Then, radio silence.
Well, I'm back! 
This time I should be around a bit more often since I am on the newly
supporting and creating art using the current line of stamps created by 

I chose to start by creating an insert page for my art journal.
I picked up a pack of these from Tuesday Morning on the cheap. 
They came in three different colors; manila tag, black, and kraft. 
I had the bright idea to use a black page, and then I heat embossed The Gent 
image with black powder. Now, how the heck was I gonna color this thing?!

I decided to give it a go using some Stampin' Up watercolor pencils.
Since my selection was limited, I was challenged to come up with a flesh tone.

I ended up using browns, oranges, yellows, and white. 
Not sure it worked all that well, but it does convey a flesh-ish tone.   
It toned down quite a bit once I used some water to blend it out.

I created the background using Distress Oxide inks.
I love these inks. They blend like buttah, and I love the
oxide effect that is achieved simply with water.  

 I have a bunch of mustache brads that I rarely use, so I was
determined to get one on this project. I used it to cross the "t". 
Pretty cute, if I do say so myself.

I added some washi tape and hardware to the upper corner.
I tried to keep it pretty flat along the left hand side as it will be added 
to my art journal, which already has issues closing.

 I added some silver gear die cuts, and broke out my Distress crayons
to add distress and grunge all over the place. I love the black crayon. It's perfect
for adding dimension and shading on projects like this.
Lastly, I added black and white splatter to give an over all cohesiveness to the page.

That's it for me today.

Wednesday, 2 May 2018

Please Welcome the New Speshink Design Team


Welcome and thank you for stopping by. x
Today I am extremely excited to announce and introduce my new design team that will be focusing on using my stamps that are available at Chocolate Baroque or you can find them by clicking on the shop tab at the top of my page.x

With this new team I have tried to find people with styles that vary so there should be something for everyone, Mixed Media, Card Making, Copic Colorists etc. Some of the team are people I have known from the beginning of my crafty journey and some are new crafty friends who's work I have fallen in love with and hope you do too.

The aim is to have a new Speshink DT post every Monday rotating through team with the occasional guest stopping by in between, so keep popping back to see what new crafty goodness the team have come up with. And having seen several of their first makes, I can not wait to share them with you.

Ok, Enough of my rambling, Please say Hello to the new Speshink Design Team. xxx

Gloria Palmer-Steiger


My name is Gloria, but some know me by my other moniker, Creepy Glowbugg.
I have had the extreme pleasure of working with Mark artistically, for quite a few years now.
I am proud to call him, "a friend", and "my brother from another mother". So much so, that I jumped at the chance to be a part of his latest journey.
I've been creating art since I was a kid, but really found my niche with the darker side of art and Halloween art. I can make pretty things, but I have always been drawn the dark side and I like my art to reflect that weird facet that most people turn their heads away from.
Now let's see what I can do with Mark's incredible images... 

You can find Glo Here.
   
Louise Partridge


Greetings Friends I am Louise and the fact is everyday I am captivated by all thats colourful , messy, inky,and artsy crafty. Its started the day i got a colouring book age 7 and never stopped. Its led me to paint loads and i have created botanical  watercolours, pen and ink drawings collages journals patchworks and photography. But small squares of card and miniature work is always my quick relaxing Art Fix. I am so excited to be part of the DT with Mark and feel truly inspired to share my Artsy Stuff with everyone "LETS THE JOURNEY BEGIN "
Sent from my iPhone

You Can Find Louise Here.

Neil Walker


Hi, Neil here. Journal maker, mixed media crafter/designer/artist/teacher. 
I've been fortunate to spend time sharing my passion over the years and love all things creative. Happy in my crafting "Man Cave studio" at the bottom of the garden I am looking forward to sharing my takes on Mark's brilliant stamps and hope to inspire your creativity along the way too.

Will send you my first project soon.
Catch ya later.
Neil
You Can Find Neil Here

Jane Collman



I enjoy all types of crafting and have been involved in teaching and demoing for over 10 years.  I’ve also been lucky enough to have projects in a number of magazines in the past.  
I have a large cabin at my home in Surrey, which is my workroom and classroom.  It is overflowing with all sorts of products....like any true crafter and always in a mess!!
Stamping has always been my favorite, so I’m thrilled to be working with Mark and the DT, using his amazing stamps.


You Can Find Jane Here

Saadia Nawaz


I'm a doctor by profession, live in Pakistan. I used to make clay flowers and resin jewellery but later shifted to scrapbooks and art journaling.


You can find Saadia here.

I hope you will all agree with me that this is an awesome team and hope you can all stop by each Monday as they get busy being creative with my Stamps. 
I hope you enjoy their makes as much as I am and maybe if you have time stop by their blogs and spread some love xxx.

I look forward to seeing you back here next Monday for the First post by one of the DT xxx.

Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Why I Love My Tim Holtz Stamp Platform Step By Step


So how is everyone doing? 
I know the blog has been quiet recently but that is all due to change as starting next month, I am extremely happy to announce the new Speshink Design Team will be going live with posts coming each Monday to the blog featuring makes using my New stamps available at Chocolate Baroque or through the Shop Tab at the top of my blog.
There will be a post in the next couple of days introducing the new team.
( I am sorry if I have not got round to contacting everyone that applied, I was completely caught off guard and overwhelmed with the response for the team xx )

Ok, so today's post is all about why I love the Tim Holtz Stamp platform from Tonic Studios.( Not just because it works great with my stamps ;) )
I mainly work with acrylic paints and it can be hard at times to use an image that needs to be colored over a painted surface as the paint can/will obscure the stamped details this also holds true for surfaces like design papers, and until the stamp platform arrived it was almost impossible to line up and re stamp an image you have already stamped.
( I hope I am making sense? )
The stamp platform allows you to stamp an image and then have a perfect alignment for re stamping in the same place. This lets you stamp an image, paint in the details without worrying to much about going over the lines and then re stamping the image over the painted version.
Below I have stepped out how I use the Stamp Platform.
The best thing is it even works with substrates like mdf and grey board, you just have to be careful about where you position the substrate, the thicker it is the further away from the hinge you need to work.


Start with your substrate, I have used an Mdf tag that has been covered with a Gel Plate print I made a few weeks ago.


The magnets wont be able to hold the tag down as it is to thick but you can use them as a guide for the bottom and side edges of the tag, Just be careful when you remove the tag as you do not want the magnets to move.
position the un inked stamp face down where you want the image to be stamped.


Close the lid and apply enough pressure to pick the stamp up.  One side of the platform is for foam mounted stamps and the other side is for clear cling stamps.


Ink up the stamp and close the Stamp Platform and apply even and firm pressure to get a nice cleanly stamped image, I have used archival ink


As you can see the image is visible but gets lost with the background details and colors. Don't worry, you only need the lines there to help guide you when you start to add paint to the image.


Now the fun begins ;)
Pic a medium to fine detail brush and start to fill in the design. I have used My Aviator stamp fr this tag.
You don't need to worry to much about painting ontop of the inked lines, just be careful not to go outside the lines. This process is actually easier and quicker than it may look and is quite forgiving once you get to re stamping over the top.
You can see a lot of the inked detail has been lost but its a lot easier to paint straight over the lines rather than going around them.


once the paint is dry, carefully place the tag back on to the Stamp Platform and re ink the stamp.
fold the lid back down and stamp over the painted surface.


Carefully lift the lid up and you will be left with a perfectly lined up and over stamped image.


Now I should have stopped there as I really liked the way the tag was looking but I had to keep on fiddling and I decided to stamp the word Fly to the top, this looked horrible and I had to figure out a way to save the tag.


I ended up using some of the Tim Holtz Printers Blocks to hide my botch. The details have been bought out using Decoart Media fluids to give a distressed look to them, I have also added some of Tim's mini stars that have been aged using Decoart Media Antiquing Cream.






Thanks for stopping by and don't forget to head back in a few days where I can introduce you to the New Speshink DT. I am so excited to share their work with you all. xxx



Thursday, 8 March 2018

Mothers Day Tags


With mothers day in the UK arriving this Sunday I needed to get my craft on and create something for my mum, I am also on double duty as my Sister had a little sprog just over a year ago and till said sprog is able to head to the shops and select a card i have decided to cover all the important occasions for her.
I used an MDF tag from That Craft Place and picked out a design paper for my back ground.
The Tim Holtz stamp platform really comes into its own for me with this technique, and is the reason I picked one up. I was initially skeptical on how the platform would work with a thick substrate, (the mdf is 4mm thick) and i was worried about how accurate the over stamping would be, I needn't have worried, By placing the tag towards the outside edge of the platform I had no trouble getting my image to stamp and it lined up perfectly when I cam back to over stamp.
( I will do a proper little step by step soon )
The Image was stamped using black archival ink and the image was painted using Decoart Media Fluids, you can be quite bold with the paint and it doesn't matter if you paint up to or onto the black ink lines. Once all the painting is done, carefully place the tag back on the stamp platform using the magnets as position guides, re ink the stamp and stamp over the top of the painted image, as the platform is so accurate the lines match up and there is no double image, it really tidies up the painted image and makes using acrylic paints much easier to work with stamped images.


My second tag has been turned into a tag card and I have gone for a more clean and simple look using a faux chalk board finish and this time the Gypsy Rose image has been stamped using a versamark ink pad, some Stamp n Bond from Stampendous (basically a glue that works like an embossing powder) this stuff is great, no more mess with wet glues like the flitter/flutter stuff that is just to sticky and messy. once the stamp n bond has been heated up and turned clear the silver leaf flakes were added for a little bling ;)


Hopefully my Mum ad Sister will like them.

You can find the Gypsy Rose Stamp as well as my other stamps in the Shop section at the top of the page or on the Chocolate Baroque web page under Mark Gould.

Stay Tuned for the new Mark Gould/Speshink DT that will be hitting this blog very soon.


Simon Says Stamps Monday challenge this week is Whatever The Weather and they are asking us to use any Tim Holtz Product, I have used the Tim Holtz Stamp Platform for my Painted Gypsy Rose.



Wednesday, 21 February 2018

Shabby Chic Apothecary Cabinet


To Gunge or not to Grunge.
I have just finished my new workshop sample for a shabby chic 8 inch apothecary cabinet. 
I have taken an Mdf Kit from That Craft Place and using Paints and mediums from Decoart given the kit a grungy shabby chic finish.


The clean shabby chic version.

In the class you will have the option of leaving the kit with a clean shabby chic finish or going all in with the ageing process, we will cover several shabby chic techniques including resist and image transfer using some of Andy Skinner's Vintage Downloads.
We will also be painting mini glass bottles that fit on the inside shelf of the cabinet.
there will be a choice of colours available in the workshop so you can finish the cabinet to your own taste xxx.





I will be teaching this class at the following venues this year. 

17 March      The Forget me Not Craft Cabin in Essex 
24 March       Lets Be Creative in Petersfield near Guildford
16 June          Amelia's Creative Crafts  near Birmingham
23 June          Rowan Tree Crafts    Carnforth 
27 October    The Stamp Addict   San Diego California


Simon Says Stamp are having a Grunge It Up Challenge and I would like to enter, you can find them HERE





Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Mixed Media Revolution


The Revolution begins,
 I am over the moon to announce Andy Skinner and myself will be kicking of the Revolution in Holland with Art Chick Studio on the 11/12 May and in June the revolution will continue in California at It's All About The Scrapbook

Both workshops will focus around the Decoart Paints and Mediums and I will be using some lovely Papers from the fantastic 7 Gypsies.


This is my project for the retreat, it's an 8 inch wall hanging with a shabby chic and vintage vibe, we will be creating a faux patina effect on 3d stars that have been cast in resin from Molds I made.
I have created two samples to show some different colour options as well as showing of some of the different design papers from 7 Gypsies.