Red and black card in a box birthday card


This card is actually a remake of my HB118B card that I made sometime ago. I got a request to make the same exact card unfortunately some of the sponge stickers are no longer available in the market. So I had to find other sponge stickers that would be suitable as a replacement.

Luckily I could find some that would match in time before the due date. Card design like this one is easy to mix and if there is one or two of the items on the card that is no longer available it can easily be replaced.

This card sure is very colourful, suitable to be given to a girl or guy. I should make more stocks of this card if I can. Do check out the video I took of the card so you can see how it opens and closes. Thank you!

Quilled Mandarin oranges CNY card


Quilled Mandarin oranges! A first for me. I've never  quilled any Mandarin oranges before so this was fun especially since I used the vortex coil technique for it. It's simple and fun to make!

I decided to use Mandarin oranges as my subject matter for my Chinese New Year cards this year because it symbolizes good fortune and good business! Hehe! Hopefully we will get all that this year, provided we work really really hard too!! Can't expect everything good to come rolling in without any effort. ;)

I tried to sew a little differently this time on paper. The thing is.....I want to sew on paper, and yet, I just didn't have enough time to do it. So what I did was, I made the gaps bigger! So I still got the effect I wanted but spend less time doing it! Yay! I thought of sewing the paper with the sewing machine, but somehow, I still prefer to do it by hand.

Another thing I was excited about was that I did the brush lettering on the card! I found a reasonably good black ink and wrote the sentiment on the card with a watercolour brush. That was fun! Nerve wrecking too! All at the same time. Haha! I can't afford to make any mistakes when writing it straight on the card. So I made sure I practiced writing it many times on another sheet of paper before doing it for real on the card. Somehow, writing using ink was easier compared to using watercolour for this particular type of paper. 

I had fun making simple cards like this and what's great is that I get to apply what I've learned so far this year on my own handmade cards. Simple bliss!

I would like to wish everyone who are celebrating Chinese New Year this year a very happy and prosperous new year!! 

Brush lettering practice

There is nothing more satisfying for me to do lately than practicing my brush lettering everyday. I have been posting photos of what I have done on my Instagram (Azlina Abdul) every other day from late last year till now. The photos above are photos of brush lettering practices that I have posted there and I wanted to share them with everyone here too.

For me brush lettering is not something that is easy for me to do but somehow doing it makes me feel so relaxed and at peace. I prefer to use watercolour as my medium to practice brush lettering but I also love to explore other mediums like inks of various kinds. 

I would start by choosing a sentiment that I love and practice writing it with any brush tool I like.....and will keep writing and writing till my hand is sore. I won't give up until I am truly satisfied with the outcome. Usually when I start, it doesn't always look as nice as the photos you see here. It would take a while before it looks ok for me to post them online. A lot of papers wasted in the process, believe you me. But it is necessary in order to get the hang of it. 

There are a lot of styles when it comes to brush lettering and at the moment I seem to be good with my own style. Haha! Just one. One that I am comfortable with. It's close to my own handwriting. The only difference is the letter "R". I usually write my R in a different way, but now I'm practicing it the way it's supposed to be written. There are so many styles of writing the letter R in calligraphy, especially if you write it using a different tool. For now I'm just gonna practice with brushes......perhaps in future I'll use calligraphy pens too. Those are super interesting to try! :) 

As for brushes.....I would have to say that the water brush is simply a wonderful tool for brush lettering. I just wish they make them smaller in size, then I would be able to write smaller writings on paper for my handmade cards. For now I only use those  watercolour brushes for small lettering. The effect it gives is of course different with different tools used. So I just have to know which works out well for which project I'm making.

How to make square vortex coils

After making lots of the basic vortex coils, I then tried to make squared ones. I didn't actually got it figured out right away. I knew how to make simple square quilling shapes but I didn't know how to get that vortex pattern inside the square. Then I figured that everything had to start with the basic vortex coil shape. Once I came to that realization, then it became very clear what I should do in order to get that square vortex coil pattern.

As promised, I have made a video tutorial on how to make the square vortex coils. So many people have requested for me to make it. It is not easy to explain with mere words on how to do it, so making a video is the best way for me to get the idea across.

The multicolour square vortex coil pattern I made in the video was made using 4 different colours of blue shredded quilling papers. My shredded quilling papers are 3mm wide and 297mm long. I used 80gsm A4 paper to make these shredded papers. You can use any type of quilling paper you fancy but I think that if you plan to make a big size vortex coil, then I suggest you use a much thinner paper, and 80gsm would be great. If you plan to use only one strip, then you can use thicker type of quilling papers.

I'm not sure yet of what design I would do using these square vortex coils but I do think that it would be great for making designs for frames and also for jewelry. I don't do jewelry though, but I will use it as decorations on my handmade cards.

Do check out the video tutorial below and have fun quilling! :)

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