Although I haven’t been blogging this week (completing that A-Z challenge was hard work!) I’ve still been busy crafting. I went a bit mad at the start of the week and joined three new swaps on the Swap-Bot website, all ATC swaps. Most Swap-Bot swaps are international, but I managed to find a UK only one, which helps to save on postage a bit. Two of the swaps, the UK only one and a ‘quick’ swap (where you only get a few days between being given your partners name and having to post out) were free theme. However, for the other swap the ATC made had to follow the theme of ‘red’. This is quite a wide ranging theme, which was good for me as I’ve never done a themed ATC before. My problem generally is that my finished ATC often bears little or no resemblance to the one that was in my head at the start! And in fact, that was the case with this one too! I used some peel-offs and papers that I’d received from a previous swap, plus a chinese word peel-off, and some Card Candy. I basically gathered up as much red stuff as I could find to begin with, and worked from there. I was pleased with the end result, and got the ATC posted off to someone in the States at the start of the week.
For the UK only swap, I used an ATC I’d already made. When I looked at the profile of the person I was sending to I saw that she liked daisies and the colour green. As I had a green daisy ATC already, I used that.
The final swap I found more tricky. Although it was free-theme, I like to look at my partners profile and send them something they’d like. My partner for the ‘quick’ swap was quite young and fashionable, and liked fluorescent colours. Now, as I did fluorescent colours the first time round in the 80s, I’ve really not got into it this time round! As such, I honestly thought I didn’t have anything that would work. However, after a good dig around in my stash, I discovered some brilliant double sided card – bright pink on one side and lime green on the other – perfect!
I used a mirror I’d received from my very first swap, and decided to embed it in layers of the card – this was far more complicated than I expected! I have a craft compass, which has a blade instead of a pencil at one end. This enabled me to cut the perfect sized circle in each sheet of card fairly easily, although it took a little while. I found a ‘you’re special’ rub on which was a very good colour match, and then coloured a few star shaped peel-offs pink to match as well. The finished ATC is very different from anything I’ve made before, but it was good to try and push myself to do something slightly out of my comfort zone.
So, as if all that wasn’t enough, I’ve joined two moe swaps this weekend. The first one I’m really looking forward to – it’s a ribbon swap! We have to send 6 x 12″ lengths of ribbon to our partner. I’m really excited about what I’m going to receive!
Finally, one more ATC swap, another quick one. I got my partners name yesterday, and I have to post the ATC by Wednesday. More red, and more peel-offs on this one, but after re-discovering my craft wire last week after doing one of my A-Z posts, I’ve used some of it on here. I’ve still hardly made a dent in it – I have so much left I think I could put a craft wire embellishment on everything I made from now until the end of the year and still not use it up! To use craft wire properly you should really use special shaping pliers, which I don’t have. So the hearts were made by hand, hence the fact they’re a bit wonky. I’ve always struggled with how to adhere the wire to the card – if you use glue it’s going to be pretty obvious – but with this ATC I used the cunning ploy of sellotape hidden by the peel-off heart.
I’m really looking forward to starting a collection of swapped ATCs. It’s lovely to see somebody else’s designs, and how they use different techniques.
At the end of my ‘Z is for…’ post I asked for ATC challenges. I received three good ones, which I have been working on today (I will show you when they’re done, don’t worry!), but would love some more. So please, what would you like to see on an ATC? I’m looking for any sort of theme, from the simple like ‘red’, to the more difficult, like ‘stressed out’ (cheers Michelle!). Give me something to get my teeth into!