For those of you familiar with scrapbooking and crafting, there’s a technique known as “antiquing” paper. It’s also sometimes referred to as “aging”, “inking”, “edging”, and even “distressing”. The general idea is that you take a sepia or other neutral colored ink pad to the edges of your desired image. This makes the image look older and more “worn”. This is the look I was aiming for with my doilies, but NO WAY was I gonna be able to get ink to all the intricate edges of my doily. So, I referred back to a technique I developed a few months ago that I call “toasting” (you know, like toasting a marshmallow over a campfire.)
It’s very simple. Basically all you need is a HOT heat gun. I say this because I imagine a low-wattage heat source won’t work the same. The one I use is a 2-temperature one by The Paper Studio I bought at Hobby Lobby with my 40% off coupon. I use the “high” setting.
All you have to do is “blow-dry” the edges of the doily and then also kind of straight down from above (to get the inner filigreed cutout edges.) As you move your heat gun around, you will get varying colors of “aging” effects. Toast as little or as much as you like. It’s just like toasting a marshmallow. Initially it takes a little patience, but once you see the golden brown goodness, you’ll be hooked!
So, with this technique in mind, I created my winter-themed ATC by implementing an antiqued doily to represent winter’s snowflakes. The inspiration for my winter ATC was my favorite song of all-time, “The Rose”, sung by Bette Midler. I’ve discovered that several of my ATCs reflect music lyrics. I guess most people who know me know that I love music. Music speaks to me more powerfully than any other medium. It’s no wonder that when I think of my art designs, I think in the language of music (and words—my second great love).
As someone who has always been overweight, I didn’t have but a handful of dates in high school. Even though in college I had more guys ask me out, I still felt like it was going to take FOREVER to find my “Mr. Right”. Many lonely Saturday nights I felt so like that barren seed buried beneath the winter’s bitter snow, awaiting the arrival of my springtime blossoming. God was my Sun and I knew with His precious care, one day I would become the rose. I feel so thankful that when I was 30, my Prince Charming found me and we fell deeply in love and were married.
It’s been over 5 years now and I still remember that cold bitter winter of my life vividly. But, those memories make me even more grateful for the Sun’s gentle love and the opportunity to finally blossom.
Note: if adding glitter, such as I did here, be sure to add it after you’ve toasted. Otherwise, the extreme heat melts it.
My finished ATC rests inside this hand-crafted envelope.