Beach beautiful is wild

Beach beautiful is wild
Beach beautiful is wild
Bonus: Learn a fabulously frugal trick for using 
spray inks when you don’t have masks or stencils! 


Without going into the gory details, last summer was a tough time for our family. Truth be told, all of 2013 pretty much sucked. A short respite from the dismal came when we visited a small zoo south of Milwaukee. Normally, a zoo isn’t all that exciting to me, but this one turned out to be pretty fun–probably more so because it was such a relief from the worries. It was literally a stone’s throw from Lake Michigan, so it wasn’t long before we headed down to the beach to watch my son climb rocks and my daughter do handstands in the sand.

All that the sun shines on is beautiful, so long as it is wild

Paper Calliope Beach beautiful

Early in the making of this page I became skeptical that I would be happy with the outcome. Crafty Confession Time: I’m still not completely comfortable using the spray inks that are so trendy these days. What’s more the Evil Budget Monster keeps me from purchasing all those incredibly cool masks and stencils.

Now, some might say I’m a stubborn person. By some, I mean The Husband, The Son™, The Daughter and every other human being that has ever come in contact with me. Nothing kickstarts my stubbornness more than being told I can’t do something. So when Evil Budget Monster reared it’s ugly head, I pumped up those creative juioes and came up with a solution to the challenge: shells. Yup, I dug into my stash and found some nicely shaped shells and starfish that would serve well as masks. Please take this moment to join me as I pat myself on the back.

Ouch, I think I dislocated my elbow doing that. Good thing the page is done. Feel free to keep patting.

Fabulously frugal--Make a mask with objects from your art stash.

Fabulously frugal–Make a mask with objects from your art stash.

Step 1 Place shells and starfish in a pattern to your liking on a 12 x 12 scrapbook paper with map image.

Step 2 Spray green, yellow and varying tones of blue inks on 2 x 12 with map image. When inking around the starfish, be careful to spray from a distance to prevent the force of the spray from moving the starfish. Use a heat gun to dry between colors, except when you want two colors to blend together.


Save dollars my making your own masks with found objects, then using gesso to line and fill in the areas around the objects.

Step 3 After the page is dry, carefully remove the shells and starfish and place on a piece of scratch paper. You may find that the shells are still damp and that the ink easily transfers to other surfaces. If you wish, you can spray the shells with a coat of poly to protect their new colors and use them in this project or future projects.

Another money-saving  tip, Use bubble wrap, burlap or other materials as stamps and stencils.

Another money-saving tip, Use bubble wrap, burlap or other materials as stamps and stencils.

Step 4 Cut a piece of bubble wrap in a wavy shape. Paint gesso onto the bubbles. Carefully stamp the bubble wrap onto sections of page. Pssst…this is another frugal tip.

Step 5 Use gesso to outline the shell shapes that the sprays created on your paper. Lightly drybush gesson inside the starfish.

Step 6 Using a black colored pencil, define the shell shapes over the gesso outlines. 

Step 7 Adhere photo.

Step 8 Adhere ribbon along bottom edge of photo, wrap around and secure on backside with tape. Do the same with two jute strings. Secure the jute in additional spots to create curls with tiny glue dots.

Step 9 Use scalloped edge scissors to cut Great Lakes image into stamp shape. Distress edges of stamp and labels with brown ink. Secure labels and stamp to page with adehesive and brads.

Step 10 Paint metal tag with light blue acrylic paint. Rub off to achieve distressed look. After dry, thread old bead bracelet through metal tag.

 Step 11 Use E-6000 to glue embellishments, washers, beads, lake glass, starfish and shells onto page. Let everything dry and you are good to go.

I hope you have a beautifully wild beach day in your future.

The Stuff

  • Recollections scrapbook paper
  • Dylusions Ink Spray
  • Heidi Swapp Color Shine
  • Recollections Spray Ink
  • Gesso
  • Black colored pencil
  • Ribbon by Petaloo
  • Date tag by Marcella by K
  • Great Lakes image by Artsy Collage
  • All that the sun shines… label by Authentique
  • Journey tag  and circle sticker sources unknown
  • Lake glass, shells, starfish, washers, beads and jute string from personal stash



6 Responses »

  1. Love those layouts. I guess 2013 was a bad year for many of us. Really, really bad. But, it can almost always be worse, so I am grateful that it wasn’t.
    Love your blog! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Caroline, My heart goes out to you hearing that your 2013 was terrible. How true that it can almost always be worse. I don’t know about you, but I sometimes find myself grateful, sad, angry and terrified at the prospect of it being worse. Maybe 13 really is an unlucky number. Fourteen hasn’t quite gained my trust yet, but we shall see 🙂 I hope your 2014 is going much better, please stop by again and let me know. Hugs, Betsy

  3. This is such a beautiful layout and I am WELL impressed that you made your own stencils & stamps to achieve it. The page has such a ‘watery’ feel, almost like gazing into a rock pool – really lush! Thanks so much for sharing your LO & techniques! 🙂

I love reading your comments and questions. Comment away!