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DIY Illustrations: My Botanical Garden | Recycling Old Book Pages

19 Oct

The most soothing after-noon activity is to engage in something new… and botanical. One day, not far ago, I decided it was time for me to experiment with making botanical shapes. This is what happened…

I’m not the watercolor kind of person. All my previous attempts ended up in the trash bin.

But, after spending hours and days… and weeks… collecting botanical illustrations, inspirations, and images over at Pinterest, I started to understand the flow of the botanical shape. What I gathered is that in making watercolor images you didn’t have to be specific – like in doodling shapes with a Sharpie.
On the contrary, watercolor was a very interesting medium where “water” had a big role in the way you applied the color. A brush pregnant with a big dollop of water, and color, and applied with quick watery strokes to create stems and leaves, can actually leave you with an amused smile.

I continued to make botanical shapes – over old book pages and fabric – after I finished these {below} a few months ago.

There is beauty in the  way watercolor bleeds into the paper and settles at the borders it feels comfortable with. Each kind of paper, heavy or light, grained or smooth, has a different communication with watercolor.

The best kind of paper I found I, and my watercolors, were comfortable with, is old book pages. They’re not so old. These are books collected during the nineties whilst I was in the midst of searching for answers. Many are full of gibberish and useless techniques to tame anger, heal hearts, and lose weight. I am an adamant believer that if you find a book useless it is insincere to give it away. Some went to the trash bin, but others stayed with me until the time was ripe for them to become watercolor canvases.

Watercolor has a good understanding with ink. They actually like each other. In some cases, I used bottled ink and applied it after I created the primary watercolor shape. They blend and dance perfectly together. There’s also a bit of acrylic paint in some places, and a dilute-able wooden pencil for sketching quick lines.

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Inspiration: The Laura Ashley floral fever

5 Aug

Source: flickr.com via Karboojeh on Pinterest

When I was a teenager (a few years ago, hehehe), I grew up with a few Laura Ashley skirts and floral accessories, and up until this day I continue to associate pretty pastel florals to this wonderful brand. Florals are now witnessing a big come back thanks to the school of ‘vintage-chic,’ which is celebrating everything beautiful my generation has seen the last drops of. We’ve been through the ‘ugly’ eighties, but we’ve captured the last offerings of the glorious 70’s, and florals seem to have managed to make their way into our lives up until the early 90’s.

The above pic shows a few Laura Ashley floral fabrics. They go together so well, although the motifs are different.

Below is a vintage-style bedroom with a country, yet contemporary, twist. The chest of drawers is from Laura Ashley as well as the vintage-style floral patterned accessories.

For more Laura Ashley accessories, I picked this floral mug  for you…

The vintage-chic style is probably the most among other trends that is celebrating florals in a big way. Vintage-chic stylists and bloggers are showing us ways to mix and match, and stack up on  florals upon florals in one location, in one room, which is exactly what I am liking recently. Look at this…

Source: flickr.com via Karboojeh on Pinterest

Source: poppytalk.blogspot.com via Karboojeh on Pinterest

Florals, which are a staple of the British aesthetic and the prairie trend, have also seen a come back into fashion lately. Belts and little floral details have appeared in this year’s spring/summer clothes and accessories.

Another brand name that celebrates full throttle florals is  Cath Kidston, whose take on florals is a bit different than the classic Laura Ashley line, but all the same I love them both (I did mention this earlier in a previous post). Here is an example of Kidston’s accessories.

I also found florals from other brands,  such as this mug, which ultimately reminds us of Laura Ashley’s style.

Finally, this is my biggest floral crush… vintage floral cards. Yum.

And this one here….

Source: umla.tumblr.com via Karboojeh on Pinterest

Ok, then, I’ll leave you with a flowery and sunny day, hopefully, and see you next time,

K

Organizing 101: Ideas for pretty storage

18 Jul

Sometimes when we embark on organizing our drawers, we end up putting our “inner” house in order. I once read a book that taught me a very important lesson about taming inner confusion… start with your surroundings!

Twelve years ago I used to take 3 bags to work (in addition to a big pile of newspaper clippings, files, and documents). I was a big mess. I was zero at organizing anything, and I had a bit of an OCD challenge back then (OCD = Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). I actually found out about the possibility that I might be a little bit “special” when I read an article – in the UK edition of Cosmopolitan – about a woman who suffered from OCD.  She couldn’t throw anything away (not to mention give out things for charity), she even kept clothes tags, and empty perfume bottles, thinking that she might need them one day. Which of course, added to the cluttered house (and life she led).

Source: bhg.com via Karboojeh on Pinterest

So, from that day onwards I consciously  started working on my clutter problem. I started sorting out my room, files, bag. And up until this day, I am always looking for solutions for organizing life.

Later on in life I read a book by a women who managed to change her life, get rid of toxic relationships, and start anew, by starting to de-clutter both her immediate physical space, and her mind’s and heart’s inner space.

Organizing can go much farther than offering your guests a tidy living room. It’s a way of being.

That said, I hope you enjoy the few ideas I have collected over the past few months. I did manage to pull a few off :)

Tip: Pretty makes you want to organize

I’m in a new stage now. It’s not about just organizing and stacking things the right way, it’s also about pretty storage, this makes the whole organizing journey so much more fun!

This (above) is my number one favorite –  for creating pretty storage. The idea of decoupaging magazine files with pretty wallpaper  is by British stylist Marie Nichols.
I wish you all a de-cluttered life and much love to come your way…

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Sweet Living Magazine: E-mag with a cup of tea

27 Apr

I love online e-mags. They provide lots of inspiration that you can’t find easily on the net. Sweet Living Magazine happens to be a very inspiring virtual publication that promises to give you lots of cool ideas. It’s new & it’s free!

Issue 3 of Sweet Living is out. And it’s full of inspiration & ideas.  Click here to read the issuu version. I particularly loved the homemade ice-cream recipes  provided by the readers at the beginning of the mag. And I love the heart sachet (In the pic above – L).

And to view issue 2 of Sweet Living, click here.

On  their blog, SL offer nice crafty ideas. Here’s one I really loved: A doll garland. Sweet, right?

I just can’t get over this Little chick tutorial! For full tutorial,  go to Petite Purls. SO CUTE!

I leave you with these lovely color palettes & inspirations, wishing you all a very lovely Friday.

With Color,

Karboojeh

 

 

Karboojeh Handmade: Handpainted Display Hanger

17 Apr

Karboojeh handpainted display hanger with clothespins

Handpainted hangers are so beautiful to look at. They become even more precious when you alter them into something ultra useful, like a kitchen towel holder, or a display unit for your creations, crafts & jewelry.

This hanger took a lot of work. It’s actually layers of trials… until I reached this outcome. I added some rhinestones to the clothespins, to give them a touch of bling. The overall look is cute romantic, leaning on being a bit shabby chic.

I’m happy with it. We can consider this as a real turning point for my craft journey. I’m grateful!

Karboojeh

 

Craft show: Table Display & Handpainted Pencils

5 Apr

I’m not in the mood for words. So, today, I leave you with a few pictures from yesterday’s craft show.

Just a little note about these hand-painted pencils… I adore them. They almost sold out yesterday at the Shigh Ead Craft show. I made the pencil holder (display unit) in the pic above by upcycling a Pringles can.

And finally a general view of the table. You can see some of the new items I have been working on: Fridge magnets/towel holders, notepads, “My Inspiration” notebooks & journals, in addition to jewelry (rings, bracelets, and earrings) and jewelry trees..

That’s it for now, Take care,

Karboojeh

Inspiration: Ideas for recycling vintage book pages

22 Mar

See this Anthropologie painting? It’s to blame for my vintage-paper-crafts-craze lately. I pinned it on Pinterest some time ago, hoping that with time I will build up the creative force to go in this direction.

I’m the kind of gal who likes to sleep on things. I started to arbitrarily collect photos and tutorials from around the net with ideas of how to recycle vintage/old paper. I noticed you can do a lot of things with pages from old books: Decoupage, handmade tags, envelopes, scrap-booking, garlands, and so many other ideas.

In a previous post, I spoke about “Recycling, upcycling vintage books”. It was about sketching illustrations while using vintage paper as your canvas.

Here are a few ways to re-use an old book in so many other different ways…

Source: etsy.com via Karboojeh on Pinterest

Envelopes look so chic when they are obviously from some old book.

Tags: Who would have thought? They look so romantic.


Butterflies: Can be used as mobiles and garlands, and in scrapbooking.

Source: elfenpulver.blogspot.com via Karboojeh on Pinterest

The idea (above) is so cool. Cardboard boxes can look much prettier when decoupaged with old pages from an old book. Add a little bit of lace and you got yourself a romantic storage unit that can really add a touch of beauty to your craft room.

More romance… with this recycled vintage-looking envelope, using old pages from a book.

P.S.  If you have a recycling idea that you’d like to share, please post the link to your project in the comments box :)

Take care,

Karboojeh

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The Source of the first pic in this post is: anthropologie.com via Karboojeh on Pinterest

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Inspiration Board: Recycling, upcycling vintage books

14 Mar

I just found this Etsy shop called Carambatack Design with original illustrations, prints, postcards, stickers and more – by Norwegian artist, Annette Mangseth. Instead of cardboard, or plain old primed canvas, the artist is using a different medium as her drawing board: Vintage paper.

The artist draws her illustrations on vintage paper from old books that carry some really cool fonts, such as the one above. The illustrations are dreamy, simple, and quite inspiring.

Although Mangseth draws faces of little girls besides the Scandinavian nature motifs, I find myself drawn to the trees, leaves, and deers, more than anything.

I love these post card trees, below; very dreamy. The worn-out, yellowed color of the pages adds to the whole upcycled/recycled vintage look and makes the designs look a bit Shabby Chic.

I have been integrating pages from old books in some of my crafts lately, a step that I have been contemplating for such a long time. It does look easy at first instance, but I think you need to develop a ‘vision’ for what exactly you want these pages to do for your over-all design. The type of color you use with the vintage pages is also crucial to the end product. Last year I tried watery-water color with yellowed book paper, but the final product looked like it missed something.

The designs that are offered by Annette Mangseth, on the other hand, look very “together,” and her designs transmit a clear message, a very strong feeling... that’s why I think she is an artist to learn from!

Thank you for the inspiration, Mangseth!

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Inspiration Board: Cork bulletin boards & display ideas

17 Jan

Showcasing jewelry at a local craft show using cork board as a display stand. The board is supported with a guitar stand from back in my music years ~ by Karboojeh Handmade Jewelry

Hello all, It’s been a while since I blogged, I’ve been quite busy, but I’m glad I’m here again to share some inspiration. I just came back from a Pinterest tour, and I would like to share with you all a few new pins celebrating one of my most loved themes: Display ideas – using one of my most favorite materials: Cork.

Before I start I just want to say the daily hits I’m getting on this blog have gone up considerably in the few days I’ve been away. First, I’d like to thank all my readers, and all the people who “like” my posts from around the WordPress community. There is a saying that boils down to the idea that when you don’t watch a kettle, the water boils faster, and I guess it’s true when it comes to most things in life. You need to switch focus every now and then and to leave things take their natural course. Sometimes not pushing things around gets you the best results; we just need to learn not to control everything, I guess.

OK, back to our topic. Here are some lovely cork bulletin boards & display ideas via BHG.

Character

Let’s start with the unconventional one: Bottle corks. These can hold up pins just like flat cork trays, but they have got much more character, don’t you think?

 Source: bhg.com via Karboojeh on Pinterest

Jewelry Display

 

Using the same bottle corks idea, this beautiful display idea (above) is fascinating for the display of jewelry.

Jewelry Display 2

I have used this idea in displaying my handmade jewelry in craft shows – as shown in the first picture in this post. But what I like about this one is the small detail: using pearl-head pins instead of ordinary push pins, which can add to the overall look.

Source: bhg.com via Karboojeh on Pinterest

Classical Modern

This one is about marrying classical vintage with natural-looking cork. I love the effect.

 Source: bhg.com via Karboojeh on Pinterest

Functional

This one is a first. I haven’t seen this idea before, and I think it’s brilliant: Using small sealable plastic bags and colorful push pins to store small craft supplies.

Source: bhg.com via Karboojeh on Pinterest

Good looking push pins

I love the way these push pins are embellished with glass pebbles and fabric scraps.

Source: bhg.com via Karboojeh on Pinterest

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