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Review | Collage Vintage Notecard Kit by Accord Publishing

Reported by Maria Del Pinto

I recently came across the Collage: Vintage Notecard kit (published by Accord Publishing) at my local book store.  The packaging promised an educational opportunity to learn how to collage using the materials in the kit.  Since all of the artwork, papers, and projects in the  Collage: Vintage Notecard kit are designed by illustrator Maryjo Koch, who is known for her artwork and her book Vintage Collage-Works: Artful Ideas with Antique Ephemera, I felt this would be a good addition to my craft collection.  I was not disappointed.

The collage kit contains:

  • Instruction booklet
  • 12 notecards and envelopes
  • 96 sheets of assorted artwork
  • A proportion wheel
  • A glue stick
  • A handy organizational box to hold and protect the supplies.


Don’t be fooled by the picture of the box above, there are a lot of supplies provided in this kit. The selection of decorative papers is so varied that it will appeal to a broad group of crafters and mixed media artists.

There are papers with maps on them:

There are cool vintage looking letter-style papers:



There are wall paper print papers:

More wall paper floral prints:


There are postage stamp images:

There is also a great selection of music sheet papers:

There are colorful and detailed bird images:

There are also butterfly and dragonfly images:

There are also some great rose papers:

The kit also supplies a “proportion wheel” which is a very handy tool for the beginner who likes to pre-calculate their layout.  It helps the beginner figure out the measurements when working with different size ephemeral for their particular project.  For those who enjoy the more traditional “cut and paste as you go method” you may not need the tool.

The instructional booklet is really easy to understand.  It goes into detail on the composition and combining of decorative papers and ephemera.  It also has some easy collage project ideas that anyone can gain inspiration from.

First Project
My first project was very simple, I combined some of the different papers from the kit to create a simple card.  

First, I chose the background image.  Then I cut out the bird image and the flower image and glued them onto the card.
Bird Collage Card

Second Project
For my second project, I decided to cover a plain journal with some of the papers from this kit.  I started by painting the base with some blue paint from Plaid.  Then I gave it two coats of the Extreme Glitter Paint, also from Plaid.

I choose the papers, ephemera,  and some glitter (from the Martha Stewart collection) to work with some cute ribbon that I had on-hand. I cut the various pieces out and then glued them onto the book cover.  The project took about 20 minutes to finish (including paint drying time).
Journal
Third Project
For my third project, I decided to make a small wristlet-type purse for my daughter.  I decided to use some scrapbooking papers that I had from the Echo Park Paper Co.  The first paper I used from the Echo Park collection was the “Large Leaf Dot” paper from their “Dots and Stripes” collection.  
I put the wood frame onto the paper to trace the pattern.

I then did the same thing with the “Ruby Red Large Dot” paper.

Here is a side view of the wristlet.

And a front view of the finished wristlet.  For more great ideas of things to do with your scrapbooking papers, just use the Craft Critique search box and enter a search for project ideas for scrapbooking paper.

The techniques covered in the instruction manual cover a nice base from which a beginner can create some fabulous work and build upon.  Beyond instructions on how to make your first collage card, the book offers hints on aging, scumbling, and other tips and techniques.  Additionally, due to the very generous amount of supplies, you can apply the knowledge learned from the kit to journaling and home-decor pieces.

The instruction manual is full of pictures of various items designed and made by Maryjo Koch with the materials in this kit.  They range from cards to decorating journals. It offers very simple step-by-step instructions that are written for those who not familiar with collage work and/or working with antique-style ephemera.  For someone seeking more advanced knowledge and ideas in collage, I would recommend one of Maryjo Koch’s books.  This kit is created for beginners and is represented as such through the materials in the kit.
Pros:
  • This is a great kit for beginners.  
  • The patterns on the paper are varied and could be applied to a large range of crafting situations.
  • Everything you need is included in this kit (except scissors).

Cons:
  • Glue stick did not work well.  Everything I glued with it came loose.
  • Paper colors seemed to all in the same color family… it would be nice to have fewer beiges and browns.  Adding more bright colors would have accented the beautiful papers better.
What do you think? Is the Collage Vintage Notecard Kit something that you would use? Do you have any favorite collage papers and/or techniques you would like to share with our readers? Leave us a comment and let us know!

CHA Mixed Media: Art-C

If you are familiar with Artist Trading Cards or have always wanted to try your hand at mixed media, then this new line from Art-C is for you. As stated on their website, “Art-C tools and mixed media supplies put new styles of artistic expression right at your fingertips”, and that is a fact.

Their collection of paints, mists, and mediums make for a much easier approach to mixed media art, whether you are a pro or just starting out. Coordinating styles, colors and textures take the guess work out and allow you to just be free to experiment and create.

These “Words of Life” and “Words of Love” are perfect for ATCs, collages, cards, and so much more.
We love these new Canvas Colorables. Each package contains two 5 x 7 themed designs printed on a 7 x 9 raw, serge-finished canvas, which allows it to be sewn or glued into your artwork. The detail of the printed images is incredible!

Also new are these themed stencils packs and combined with the line of paints, mists, and various mediums, they can make amazing scenes and backgrounds.

Please visit their website for more new products. Their booth was a bit crowded (understandably), so we don’t have photos available for the surfaces, pattern stencils, and ATC kits, but they are a must see!
We did manage a couple of photos of really cool mixed media projects:

So, are you a mixed media pro or are you now inspired to try it out and release your artistic creativity?
Click on the link at the top of the page to visit Craft Critique for comments, giveaways and more!

CHA Scrapbooking: 7 Gypsies

7 Gypsies is famous for their marvelously eclectic collection of products that are extremely versatile for all types of crafting and this year, they did not disappoint. And the design team projects created with these lines? To die for. One could spend hours in their booth. Two new collections were debuted at this show – Lillie and Camden – as well as some new hardware.
 Each collection includes 12″ x 12″ patterned papers, 8″ x 8″ and 6″ x 6″ paper pads, clear stamps, tags, paper tapes, metal embellishments, stickers and alphas. Let’s just say that every bit of it is delicious. 

We love that the “Camden” collection includes coordinating distressed solid colors in their paper packs.

This new ATC drawer is simply fabulous. Oh, imagine the possibilities…

This simple display on their booth wall was a definite favorite. It makes such an impact, don’t you think?
What kind of projects have you used 7 Gypsies for, and what do you see yourself making with this new line?
Click on the link at the top of the page to visit Craft Critique for comments, giveaways and more!