April 28th, 2013

cover of asian themed book made from coffee filters
back cover of asian themed book made from coffee filters
asian themed book fanned open
asian themed book first layout
asian themed book second layout
asian themed book third layout
asian themed book fourth layout
asian themed book fifth layout
asian themed book sixth layout
asian themed book seventh layout

This is an Asian themed book made from coffee filters. Its made for a swap at Art for the Creative Mind swap group.

I cut the front and back cover from book board. I bound the book using household string and two wooden chopsticks, as shown.

On the front cover, I cut and made an Asian dancing girl using an iris folding pattern found in a magazine.  I added some die cut cherry blossoms that I made using this die: Sizzix Thinlits – Thinlits 3PK Flowering Quince.   I added a gold dragonfly charm and a strip of lace along the edge.

On the back cover, I stamped and heat embossed a pagoda, and glued it over scrapbook paper. I added some pink metallic fibre.

The third picture shows the album fanning open. The binding with the chopsticks permits a fanning style that some binding types would not allow.

On the first layout, I used some play money with an Asian theme and some images of Asian people.

On the second layout, I added the silhouette of the Asian dancer, that was cut when I did the iris folding on the front cover. On the facing layout, I added a Haiku poem that I wrote myself.

On the third layout, I used stamped images on both sides. One image is a background layout using Asian letters or words. The other is an image of a geisha girl. I coloured it with Copic markers and added a gold charm in the shape of a fan.

On the fourth layout, I put a photograph of flowering cherry trees on one side. I took the photo myself in Vancouver. On the facing page, I used various Asian papers, including paper taken from a Chinese language newspaper, to form a collage.

On the fifth layout, I used some Chinese papers that I believe are used in Buddhist celebrations on one side. On the other side, I made inchies out of Chinese language newspaper and arranged them in a decorative shape.

On the sixth layout, I placed an origami kimono (folded by me) on one side. On the facing side, I stamped bamboo images directly on the coffee filter, and covered with a photograph of bamboo growing in Vancouver’s Van Dusen Gardens.

On the seventh layout, I used some fresh bamboo leaves that I dried or pressed in the microwave.  Facing this, I used an image of an Asian dancer taken from a brochure of a Chinese dance troupe that performed in Vancouver.

And that is my Asian coffee filter book.



December 15th, 2011

ATC with tree made with iris folding This Christmas or holiday themed ATC has an iris folded tree as its central element.

The artist trading card was made for a technique swap at Art Ventures. Every month, we swap cards made with a technique that begins with a different letter of the alphabet.

This month is the alphabet I and my technique is iris folding.

I topped the tree with a small colored rhinestone.



December 9th, 2011

small art bag made to contain an ATC I made this “artful bag” for a swap at Art for the Creative Minds.

When I noticed that Playing in Paradise Challenge 45 called for a project with a tree as a focal point, I decided to enter the challenge.

The item is a small bag — an artful bag — made to contain an ATC  or other item of similar size.

I used an iris folding design to make a blue holiday tree or Christmas tree with a monochromatic color scheme.

I put four small blue eyelets at each  corner, and I used a white ribbon with silver metallic threads to make the handle.

The same ribbon is glued on the back to form a cross design.

The bag contains an ATC that I made as well.


January 25th, 2010

toddlers valentine card made with iris folding in shape of a train Valentine’s Day is coming fast. I made this toddler’s valentine card using the iris folding technique. It’s in the shape of a train, given that the little boy who will receive the card  is fascinated with trains just now. I’ve used bright, primary colors, since those are the colors that appeal to young children.

If you haven’t done iris folding before, there is an Iris Folding Video Demon at this link.

The word “Valentine” is created with alphabet stickers, as is the XO at the bottom.

I have given the big wheel some dimension by attaching it with a pop dot.

The tiny hearts are made with a craft punch.  I have added glitter by placing small dots of red Stickles Glitter Glue here and there. Stickles Glitter Glue is available at Joann.com and elsewhere.

Inside this toddler’s Valentine card, I have placed the cutout shape of the train, created when I made the iris folding cut. I have decorated it a little bit.

October 28th, 2009

Sharon Reinhart, a Canadian gal who I know from my email group, Canadian Stamp Talk, has just had her newest craft book published, Iris Folding for Christmas.

It’s not yet available from stores, but one can pre-order it from Amazon.

Sharon says her book has recently been released by Annie’s Attic (DRG Network – edited by Tanya Fox, Cardmaker Magazines editor).
It is presently available for preorder through Amazon and hopefully in the near future it will appear at local paper craft and scrapbook stores.

In  an email message, Sharon reported that the book contains traditional and non traditional designs as well as rubber stamped accents.

She writes: “I live in Calgary and have been designing, demonstrating, teaching and writing for the craft industry since 2002. My first book The Card Gallery was published in 2003 Unfortunately the publisher Grace Publications is no longer in business. A lot of my designing teaching and demo work was done in the US for Fiskars and other manufacturer’s. I’m trying to promote things here in Canada a little better.
I’ve seen pictures of Sharon’s work and its excellent. I can hardly wait to get my hands on a copy of this one.

If you don’t know how to do iris folding, here’s a video demonstrating the technique:

Iris folding is a technique for creating beautiful embellishments for scrapbooks, mini albums, hand made cards and any other paper craft project that you may be working on.

October 27th, 2008
thinking of you card made with iris folding
thinking of you card made with iris folding
birthday card made with iris folding

I’ve been on a roll making hand made cards with iris folding lately.

The cards I posted earlier were Halloween cards utilizing specific shapes — a witch and a witch’s cauldron or pot.

While many of the iris folding patterns you find are shapes of things, you also find some that are spiraling geometric shapes, such as circles, squares, rectangles, ovals, etc.

They can be quite elegant, depending on the colors and textures of the papers you use.  The three cards shown here use the same pattern, a spiraling square.

The top card is stamped “Thoughts of You.:” The iris folding design is done on white paper and uses three colors. I used orange vellum, dark yellow vellum and scrapbook paper in a greenish yellow design.  In the iris I placed a maple leaf-shaped rhinestone.  The card is blocked on two layers — green and dark yellow that matches the yellow vellum.

The middle card is similar. I used some leftover scrapbook paper used in making the Halloween cards. There was not always enough to complete a pattern, so there are some variations. Nevertheless, the “real life” card looks like attractive, although it does not show up too well in the image. The iris is a red crystal encirled by clear crystals. It is done on black paper and layered on light green and blue card stock.

The third card uses three shades of vellum: red, orange and dark yellow. It has a pearl in the middle, and is stamped Happy Birthday. Like the first, it is layered on green and dark  yellow cardstock.

Iris folding is such a good way to use up leftover scraps of paper, and the end results can be quite attractive.

I have also created small iris fold designs to use as embellishments in scrapbooks and altered books.

October 24th, 2008

iris folding book spiral folding for paper arts Like most, if not all publications from Design Originals, Iris Folding : Spiral Folding for Paper Arts by Lisa Vollrath is a soft cover book with glossy magazine-like pages and tons of great pictures.

This book contains a couple of pages of tips and instructions for doing the iris folding technique. The remaining 35 pages contain pictures, patterns, instructions and 16 sets of color coordinated papers suitable for iris folding with the patterns given, or with other patterns of your choice.

The book contains patterns and pictures of a number of projects. There are two or three, maybe more, for an altered book. One design I plan on doing soon. It’s a stunning cover for a journal or an altered book.

There are also patterns and pictures for greeting cards, decorating little boxes, scrapbook layouts and even a small, circular pattern to decorate the inside of a slide mount.

I think this book is a worthwhile investment.  True, you can get free patterns on the Internet, but this book includes pictures of the finished iris fold incorporated in a project, as well as including several sets of complementary papers in a variety of colors.

The only negative that I can see is that the book is published in 2004, and some of the designs shown may be somewhat out of date.  To me, that matters nothing. I have written before about my opinions on keeping up with current craft trends. I see that serving the craft industry well, but not necessarily any great advantage to the crafter.

Vollrath’s book on iris folding is worth having.

October 23rd, 2008

If ever you wondered how to combine recycling with your crafting passion, then you need to drop by My StoryART for Sharon House’s Thrifty Tuesday Tips. This Tuesday she has an amazing listing of 59 tips for recycling old business cards, clothing tags, plastic bags and brown paper grocery bags and turning them into works of art.

The great thing about recycling is you get to save money while simultaneously doing your bit to help the environment. Not only that, there is a certain feeling of satisfaction stemming from creating this type of altered art. Somehow, I always feel more creative and original when I make something from ephemera and “found objects” than when I am using purchased items from the craft store.

Of course, these found objects do not work well for scrapbooking, since they are usually not archival. However, they are great for card making and other projects where longevity is not a consideration.

For the last couple of days, I have written posts about iris folding.  Iris folding can make excellent use of scraps of paper that you encounter.

Try some of the following for your iris folding projects:

1. Magazine pages are excellent, given that they are often colorful and lightweight.

2. The Dutch, who are credited with creating the craft of iris folding, apparently used the insides of envelopes for their projects. This will work just fine for us, too!

3. Junk mail can be an excellent source. Many of the flyers and brochures that show up in the mail almost daily are made from excellent quality paper and have beautiful colors and printing on them.

4. Gift wrap and tissue paper are attractive, light weight choices for iris folding.

5. Old greeting cards are often too heavy for folding, but they may serve beautifully for the iris or for small pieces of paper that you use for decorative trims, etc.

6. Scraps of leftover wallpaper can also be converted to an iris folding or other project.  I have often used wall paper to make envelopes for the hand made cards I send. You know how difficult it can be to find the right sized envelope for the card you made. Making your own is a great solution. You can find free templates on the Internet or design your own.

It just goes to show. One person’s recycled junk is another person’s altered art.

October 22nd, 2008

Iris folding is a beautiful paper craft technique in which one uses folded strips of  colored paper to form a design.  halloween witches pot card The artisan follows a pattern to lay the design. The “iris” in this case refers not to a flower, but to the unusually shaped space that remains in the middle of the pattern after the paper folds are in place.

In the Halloween card to the right, the iris is the red shape in the middle of the witches pot or cauldron.  You can fill the iris with a small picture, which is a lovely touch for scrapbooking, or you can fill it with a contrasting paper. In the witches card, I have used a contrasting color of paper and added a dot of silver dimensional glue, which matches the “glue” bubbles on top of the pot.

Iris folding patterns are readily available. Amazon has several books containing iris folding patterns and papers, and you can also find the patterns for sale or for free on the Internet.

Iris Folding @Circle of Crafters is my favorite site for free patterns. You can sign up to receive a free pattern every month by email. plus you can help yourself to the archived patterns. You can not, of course, sell any of these patterns to others. They are for your own use only.

The video demonstration below shows how I made a Halloween card using iris folding.

Iris folding designs can be fun and quirky or elegant and stunning. They work for every season and every occasion, and they’re fun to do. Enjoy!

October 17th, 2008

I think that Halloween cards are among my favorite cards to make. I simply love this holiday. The colors appeal to me and I enjoy the whimsical nature of the season.
halloween witch card made with iris folding
I made the card on the right for my granddaughter a few years ago. The witch is made using a technique known as iris folding. I plan on making a video tutorial demonstrating iris folding sometime soon, but for now, I’ll just refer you to Iris Folding @Circle Crafters Free Pattern of the Month Club. They have some wonderful patterns and pictures of completed projects. You can sign up for free email notification when the pattern is ready.

So my card uses iris folding, but I don’t remember where I got the pattern. I may have drawn it myself. I do that from time to time.

The broom brushy part is made with a light burlap paper and the broomstick is a length of wood, probably from a skewer.  The star is a button or charm, and Happy Halloween is a stamped image.

The other nice thing about iris folding is that it gives you a chance to use up scraps of paper.  We all have a stash of that, don’t we?

Do you have a favorite Halloween card? Please comment or leave  a link to where we can see it.