In the Craft Room 1st February 2014 – All things “Clarity”

Its February (already?) and time for a new theme

This month we have decided to have a go at all things “Clarity”.  We are trying this year to pick a theme each month and spend the month learning some of the skills and techniques  to go with that theme. If you have seen the posts for January you will have seen that we were inspired by Hels Sheridan  and spent a very fun month creating inspirational word plaques.

This month we are attempting to try out some of the techniques associated with Barbara Gray and Clarity Stamps and hopefully master one or two of them, though if today was anything to go by we may need more than a month. ( I include myself in this as I had not attempted some of the techniques myself, I think it may be a case of the blind leading the blind)

I thought that the best place to start would be at the beginning – using clever corners and pattern building, and that the best person to show us how it should be done would be Barbara herself. Now I know that she is a very busy lady, so the next best thing was to watch her at work in her  1st DVD (We think things may  have changed a wee bit since this was made)

Now we thought that between us (Lisa and myself) that we had built up  a reasonable  selection of Clarity stamps, so  why is it that  you never have the stamp that you want (need). To do pattern building with clever corners you need corner stamps. I did realise this last week and as I only had one, did order a couple more which sadly have not yet arrived, luckily Lisa had three so we at least had one each to practice with.

We are going to carry on practising this technique for the first hour each Saturday for the rest of the month as it is not quite so easy as Barbara made it look. We had the ink, the stamps and the paper, we just didnt have the skill, not yet any way. Practice makes perfect they say. We have learnt a few things today though, like don’t press down too hard with the stamp.

Break time, I cheered them up  with double chocolate  vanilla cup cakes  (recipe on my recipe page and can be downloaded if you would like to try)


Now its time to play with the brayer. Apart from using a brayer with the Gelli plate. The only time I have used a brayer was at one of Barbara’s breakfast workshops last March at the Harrogate paper-craft show which Lisa and I both attended.

I know that we now have splodge mats to use with the brayer,  but I thought that we should start the old way first using copy paper and doing wheelies to get rid of excess ink. Then next week when we use the brayer  with the splodge mat we will appreciate how much better it is.

Well I think we sort of got the hang of it. I gave out large tag size pieces of card to start with (less daunting ), showed them how to use a moon mask,  explained about when to stamp the main image, ie if an outline stamp, to stamp first then mask over before brayering, or if a solid/silhouette stamp that it could be done either before or after. I also showed them how to make hills by using a torn  piece of paper and “lightly” sponging, hmm.

Sometimes I think  the best way to learn is by making mistakes,  maybe they were just to keen to play with the brayer, but I definitely think a bit more practice is required. and now that we know how not to do it, I think  next week we will have a plan.

Still I don’t think we were too bad with our first attempts


Next week, same place, same time, same again only better!!!

Hopefully my parcel of goodies from Clarity will have arrived too

Thank you for reading


1 Comment

  1. Lisa

    Who knew clever corners would be so tricky lol. Pretty pleased with my tag on reflection but yes I definitely need more practise with the brayer, looking forward to it, loved the technique with the scrunched up paper to look like water 🙂

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