Monday, 19 March 2018

Artline Monday - Spring watercolours

I love spring, I love seeing the world bloom with colour again after the wet, grey months of winter and I feel energised and renewed.  I wanted to mark the start of the season in my journal with lots of pretty florals and I had an idea to paint some flowers watercolour style with my Artline paint and chalk markers.

Welcoming spring in my journal

It was a complete experiment but I am happy with how they turned out so I thought I would share with you how I did it step by step in case you wanted to do something similar.  This is a quick and easy way to dip your toe into watercolours without having to buy an expensive palette of paints or a nice craft project for your children over the upcoming Easter holiday! 

The supplies

You will need some watercolour paper or any other kind of paper that can withstand you using water on it, I used my tomoe river notebook because the paper is super strong.  You will also need some poster and/or chalk markers, a paint brush and a waterproof pen like the Artine 853 OHP marker.

Starting the flowers

Use your poster or chalk marker to draw a circle or semicircle for the base of your flower and then go into it with a wet paintbrush to spread the paint out into a flower shape.  You want the paint to be darker at the bottom of the flower and fade as it goes up to the top of the petals.  This doesn't have to be perfect, just spread the paint out until you have a general shape.

Waiting for the paint to dry

Paint as many flowers as you like and then wait for the paint to dry.

Adding details

I used my 853 OHP marker to draw some stems and leaves on my flowers, these details change the paint from looking like blobs of colour and into blooms!  Again these don't have to be perfect, imperfections make the flowers look more interesting anyway.

White highlights

The last step was to add some specks of white paint to the flowers using my Artline 444XF paint marker and then I was finished.

The finished flowers

I think I will try to use my poster and chalk markers for more watercolour art now I know that they work well, the key to it is just adding the water quickly and using the brush before the paint sets on the page.  I am already picturing sunset skies with pink and purple streaks and seascapes, I can't wait to get started!

Please let me know if you give it a go!

Friday, 16 March 2018

My week #10

A couple of weeks ago I brought a "seconds" pack of stickers from FiloFabulouss on Etsy, it was a lucky dip selection so I didn't know what I would receive but I love almost everything in Sarah's shop so I knew I would be pleased with whatever arrived.

Planning my week

When the stickers came I couldn't see anything wrong with them at all and I got some super cute designs!  I used some of them in my planner this week for a summer boho kind of theme.

My week #10

Pink and blue is one of my favourite colour combinations, especially in pastel shades and they go beautifully with the gold washi tape, stickers and paper clip.

Close up

Close up

What is your go to colour combo?

Monday, 12 March 2018

Artline Monday - Ways to spread happiness

Have you heard about the International Day of Happiness?  This year it falls on the 20th March and it is a day dedicated to making the world a happier place, what a great idea!  For today's post I have come up with a few ideas for how you can spread some joy and happiness to mark this special day.

Ways to spread happiness - created with Artline pens

Leave little notes

You could leave some notes for your family and friends to find, pop them in lunch boxes, leave them in the car, hide them in books or in bags.  You can write anything that you think will make someone smile, a silly joke, a compliment or a simple "Hello" or "I'm thinking about you". 

Give your time

Do you know anyone who could do with some help?  Could you offer to babysit for someone who needs a break or ask an elderly neighbour if they would like you to run any errands for them?  You could turn off the TV and your phone and spend time with a friend or family member, focusing your attention on them and making them feel valued or you could volunteer at a local charity or charity shop.

Be kind

Small acts of kindness really make people happy!  There are lots of small and easy ways to be kind and make the world a nicer place, you could give your seat up on a crowded train or bus, let someone go in front of you in a queue, leave a small drawing or doodle for someone to find and make them smile or you could send a friend some happy mail.  It's always lovely to get a letter in the post instead of a bill or junk mail!  

Share memories with friends

Share happy memories with friends

Do you have any funny memories or photos you could share with your friends?  Pop them online and relive those times or give them a call and reminisce about the good old days!

Compliment people

How great does it feel to receive a genuine compliment?  You have the power to make someone else feel like that!  Tell someone you love their hair or their clothes, that they have pretty eyes or a nice smile, that they are smart or have a talent.  I bet these thoughts pop into your head all the time, don't keep them to yourself say them out loud!  You never know you might receive some nice ones back about yourself too!


Smiles are contagious, if you smile at someone they will smile back at you and then smile at the next person they see.  The smiles will spread like ripples on water until everyone around you is looking much happier.  

People also believe that if you smile even when you aren't feeling particularly happy it can trick your brain into making you feel cheerful and brighter so it is worth giving it a go!

One of my favourite things to do is spend some time with my Artline Stix brush markers and fineliners so creating the spread for this post made me happy which in turn makes me feel even more inspired to makes others feel good too.  What makes you happy and will you be celebrating on the 20th March?

Wednesday, 7 March 2018

My week #9

Last week we had a lot of snow, in fact nearly everywhere in the UK had some but inside my planner it was the beginning of spring!

My week #9

I carried on my floral theme from last week with some really pretty washi tape and then matched the colours from it with my Trendy Page Dot reinforcements and inks.  

It was so nice when I was huddled up at home under layers of clothes and a blanket to look at my pages and imagine that the first days of spring were just around the corner even though they felt like a million miles away!

Close up

Close up

The snow is all thawed now and hopefully there wont be anymore until next winter, I am keeping my fingers crossed for warmer days, sunshine and flowers soon!

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, 5 March 2018

Artline Monday - Mother's Day gift

Are you all set for Mother's Day this Sunday or are you still looking for a gift?  I wanted to give my mum something a little different this year so I thought I would personalise one of her presents with some of my Artline pens.


I brought her a mug with mum printed on it in gold and a plain white mug for my girls to decorate for me too, then I went through my pen collection to find the best ones to work on ceramic.

When I researched this craft online I read that water based permanent markers don't tend to stand up to being washed repeatedly unless you bake the ceramics in the oven after you have drawn on them, I wasn't too keen on this idea so I decided to test a few different pens myself to see what works best.

My pen test

I left the inks until they were 100% dry and then gave them a scrub in the sink, dried them off and then washed them again a few more times until I was happy that I had found the right pens to use.  The Artline 444XF paint marker and Artline 900XF metallic pens all looked perfect after my repeated testing so I decided to use those to personalise my mug.

Heart shaped post-it-note

The first thing I did was choose the shape I wanted to use on the mug, I picked a heart post-it-note and then stuck that over the word Mum.  I put a bit of folded over washi tape underneath the bottom of the heart to hold the note securely in place and then it was time to start decorating! 

Adding lots and lots of spots

I used my gold pen to dot over the mug and partly over the heart post-it, then I used the silver one and left the spots to dry for 10 minutes .  The last step was to add more dots with my white paint marker and then it was time to let the paint dry!

Waiting for the pens to dry

Once everything was completely dry I slowly peeled the post-it off the mug and this is how it turned out.  I really like it!

After removing the post-it-note

My finished mug

I showed my girls this technique but they decided to do things their own way! 

Drawing around the star

My eldest daughter decided to draw around the star shaped post-it-note and then did a spot of freehand decoration before passing the mug onto her little sister.

Adding some decoration

After a few "creative differences" this is their lovely design!

Made with love
Our Mother's Day mugs

It was nice to do something fun and creative together and the mugs are certainly unique! I will treasure mine and I'm sure my mum will be happy with hers.

I haven't tested the cups in a microwave or dishwasher so if you make your own I think you should consider them to be hand wash only and treat them like fine china instead of a regular mug, just to be on the safe side.

 I would love to know if you do give this a try!

Tuesday, 27 February 2018

Planner itch & my week #8

I have a confession, I haven't really been using my planner recently.  I know, I know, what's wrong with me right?  I had been in my Van der Spek custom organiser for two years when I started to feel planner itch, that little nagging feeling that it was time for a change, for something new or different.  So I moved into my rose gold Saffiano and set it all up but I still wasn't happy.  I wasn't using my planner to plan so eventually I just started writing things down in a notebook or in my TN and adding reminders to my phone calendar instead. 

My spring themed planner

I was stilling feeling the itch and unsettled so I decided to go through my planner collection and pick out one to start using again properly.  I was drawn towards my white Webster's Colour Crush planner, it seemed fresh and springlike so I filled it with flower prints, my favourite paperclips and my new Ultimate Success Planner inserts hoping to get my mojo back and for the first time in ages I felt inspired!

My week #8

I grabbed my washi tape and stamps and set about planning my week!  It was half term so I didn't have too much going on, it was a nice easy week for me to dip my toe back into the planning water so to speak.

Close up

Having decorated my pages I enjoyed using my planner again throughout the week, I was more inclined to open it up and check my to do lists and reminders and that helped me stay on top of things.  I am feeling much more organised now!  I have even planned this week too!

Close up

Do you ever feel planner itch or is it just me?

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, 26 February 2018

Artline Monday - World Book Day

Did you know it is World Book Day this Thursday?  I love to read, give me a spare half hour, a good book and a cup of tea and I am in my element!  Reading opens up whole new worlds to people and can take you on all kinds of different adventures which is why World Book Day is important to me.  I thought for today's post I would share with you some activities you can do with your children to celebrate this special day!

Make some bookplates

Lots of children are being asked to dress up for World Book Day and to take their favourite books into school, make sure these treasures aren't lost by labelling them.  I brought a pack of 30 plain white sticky labels for 50p and we had lots of fun making our own bookplates over the weekend.

We made some pink and blue galaxy themed labels using a couple of Artline poster markers, a sponge, some Artline pens, glitter glue and an xclamations stamp.

Sticky labels, Artline poster markers & a sponge

We dabbed the two poster markers next to each other on a dry sponge.

Adding the colours to the sponge

Then dabbed the sponge all over the sticky labels.

Dabbing the paint onto the labels

After the paint dried we could write, draw and stamp on top of it.  Here are some of our bookplates!

Our bookplates

My girls also made a few labels on their own using lots of Artline products, it certainly kept them entertained for quite a while and now we have lots and lots of stickers for our books!

Making more labels

World Book Day rock

I wanted to do a little something to make someone smile this World Book day so I made another of our #ArtlineRocks to hide.  I used a few Artline 853 OHP markers to draw a book and cup of tea and added some steam with a paint marker.  We are going to hide this somewhere near our library and hope it will be found by someone else who loves reading!  If you want to have a go at rock painting with your children make sure you check out my previous posts for some tips and ideas!

World Book Day 2018 rock

Visit your local library

This week is the perfect time to stop by the library and pick out some new books together.  Even the smallest library can hold hundreds of books to choose from so you should be able to find something you will enjoy.  If you aren't already members take a look at your council/library website to see what paperwork they will accept to sign you up for a card before you go.

I hope you have a fabulous World Book Day and find some time to dive into a good book, I am planning on cracking open an old favourite and re-exploring The Shire and the rest of Middle-earth!

Friday, 23 February 2018

Planner Friday - February

It's Planner Friday again over on the Trendy Twine blog, please pop over and take a peek!

I know it is only the end of February but I am already daydreaming of spring!  I can't wait to see flowers blooming and feel the sunlight warming my skin again, winter feels like it has lasted at least six months!  With this feeling in mind I have swapped planners into a white binder and I am filling it with lots of florals and fresh colours to keep me going until spring actually does arrive. 

Journalling cards & paperclips

I have added some journalling cards and a few of my favourite paper clips into the pockets of my planner and they make me smile each time I open it up!  The positive quotes on the journalling cards are going to help me through the last days of winter and they are nice and handy if I want to document anything on them in the meantime.

I continued the spring theme onto my planner pages this week using lots of lovely Annie's Paper Boutique products.

Products used:
Choose Happy stamps
Used but not pictured:
Trendy Page Dots
Journalling cards
Paper clips

I am really happy with how they turned out!  I love how clean and tidy they look because of the APB stamps and I matched my ink colours to the washi tape and Trendy Page Dot reinforcements just to pull it all together.

You can see my spread and read the rest of my post here.

See you again soon!