Blog, tutorial, Video

VIDEO: Gelli Prints Project #4: Digital Gelli Prints and Hybrid Art Journal Page

Digital Gelli Prints and Hybrid Art Journal Page with a film by Kim Dellow

I’m guessing that you are like me and like to make the most out of the art that you make don’t you? I mean there is just so much you can do with it and I’ve shared ideas before like the blog post about turning your art journal pages into soft furnishings for your home or the one about making personalised stocking filler gifts (perfect for this time of year *wink *wink!). Well, as part of my Gelli Prints Project series I thought I would stretch the use of my monoprints and do a hybrid art journal page.

So today we are going partly digital and using some of my digital stamps from my Etsy shop with some digitalised gelli print papers as the focal point to a painted art journal page. So I have tips on how to scan your monoprints, how to add digital stamps to them in Photoshop Elements and also how to make a quick textured background with heavy body acrylic paint.

So a lot of subjects covered in my video today! Scroll down to find all the supplies plus a close-up of the finished art journal page.

VIDEO: Gelli Prints Project #4: Digital Gelli Prints and Hybrid Art Journal Page



[There are some affiliate links in this blog post, so if you buy through them I do get a small amount of money at no extra cost to yourself, but it really does help. Thanks for your support!]

——— S U P P L I E S ———

Scanner/ Printer (I’m using the Epson XP 625 this is an old model, I’ve linked to newer models in this range, but I’ve not used them myself)
Buy from Amazon UK
Buy from Amazon US

Photoshop Elements (I’m using 10 which as an older version, I’ve linked to the newer versions, but I’ve not used them myself)
Buy from Amazon UK
Buy from Amazon US

Floral Digital stamps
Buy from my shop on Etsy (instant downloads)

The two papers I currently use for personal art/craft printing projects:
Ryman Card A4 160gsm (White)
Buy from Rymans UK
Crafter’s Companion Satin Finish Printer Paper 100gsm
Buy from Crafter’s Companion

Strathmore Mixed media Journal
Buy from Amazon UK
Buy from Amazon US
Buy from Jackson’s Art UK (Ships Worldwide)

Liquitex Heavy body Acrylic paint (red, yellow, white)
Buy from Amazon UK
Buy from Amazon US
Buy from Jackson’s Art UK (Ships Worldwide)

Lettering stencil
Buy from Amazon UK
Buy from Amazon US

Palette knives
Buy from Amazon UK
Buy from Amazon US
Buy from Jackson’s Art UK (Ships Worldwide)
Buy from Blitsy US (Ships Worldwide)

Golden Regular gel (Gloss)
Buy from Amazon UK
Buy from Amazon US
Buy from Jackson’s Art UK (Ships Worldwide)


Gelli prints make you own or
Buy from my shop on Etsy (instant downloads)

Gelli Plate 8 x 10 inch
Buy from Amazon UK
Buy from Amazon US
Buy from Jackson’s Art UK (Ships Worldwide)


close-up of Digital Gelli Prints and Hybrid Art Journal Page with a film by Kim Dellow


Start here with tips on gelli printing.

Try out Project #1 with a technique for turning your drawings into mixed media collage.

Project #2 was all about using gelli prints to make botanical art.

Project #3 use your gelli prints to make cute envelopes with colour on the inside and outside. PLUS there is a free template too!

Project #5 use your gelli prints to make a cute coordinated present wrap gift set (perfect for Christmas btw!).

Haven’t got a gelli plate? Don’t worry, make your own with this handy blog post on Gelatin plates.


I’m really interested to know how much hybrid work you include in your art and craft practice. So let me know if you use software and apps and which ones you use, also what do you make with them? Thanks guys!

Catch you all later!


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Blog, tutorial

DIY Notebooks Tutorial With The Cricut Explore

Are you ready for another DIY tutorial using the Cricut Explore? Great ‘coz I’m ready too and this week I’ve been making DIY notebooks and journals using the Cricut Explore. But before I show you how, you might want to catch up with my other How-Tos with the Cricut Explore this month so check out my Journaling cards and the Stamps tutorials for more DIY fun.

Let’s get started shall we?

DIY Notebooks made with the Cricut Explore

[There are some affiliate links in this blog post, so if you buy through them I do get a small amount of money at no extra cost to yourself. Thanks for your support!]

You Will Need:

Cricut Explore

Cricut Design Space

Cricut Explore mat
Cricut Explore basic tools

Cricut Explore Scoring tool

Paper and thin cardstock

Needle / coloured thread

Paper piercer


Cricut design space workspace

1. Open up the Cricut Design Space software and start a new project. Insert a square with rounded corners, I’ve used #M46C02 and ungrouped the layers then made the bottom layer visible and deleted it. Resize the square to make your notebook cover, I want a 5 inch x 7 inch notebook so I made the square 10 inch x 7 inch. Use the numbers in the box when you pull the corner to help you size the shape or use the ‘Size’ option in the ‘Edit’ window.

Adding a score line in Cricut design space workspace

2. There is a rather handy free score line if you search for #M48E16, I found it using the keyword ‘line’ in the search box. Insert the score line and resize it to fit the height of your notebook. Now here is the tricky bit. There are no centering or alignment tools in Cricut Design Space (or at least I’ve not found them) so you need to do a bit of jiggery pokery (official crafting term) to get the fold line in the centre of the notebook cover.

The easiest way I found was to move the notebook cover shape so that it is up against the ruler on the left-hand side then select the score line and move it left or right, as needed, with your mouse. As you move it a box will tell you where the line is on the workspace so use this to place the line exactly halfway on your notebook cover, so for my case when the X coordinate hits 5 inch. Alternatively use the ‘Position’ option in the ‘Edit’ window and change the X coordinate directly.

If there is an easier method please do let me know!

Placing the score line in the Cricut design space

3. My next step is a lazy step and you can skip this one if you like and go straight to step 4. For my lazy step I decided I wanted the machine to ‘tell’ me where to place my holes to bind my book, so I inserted another score line, turned it 90 degrees and decreased its size until it was just a long dot. I then copied and pasted it and placed both notches along my centre score line in the positions that I wanted to stab my holes. You might need to use the zoom to help you do all this.

These little notches become very hard to see so once you have them in place group them together to make them easier to move around.

Placing the images in the Cricut design space

4. Now that you have your cover, how about some inside papers for your notebook? For your basic inner pages copy and paste the cover page then resize the copy to be slightly smaller than the cover, I went for 9.81 inch x 6.81 inch. You are going to need to re-size and re-centre your score line, just do what you did for the cover, but take into account the change in size.

Tip – if you used the notches trick from Step 3 to help you with the placing of your holes when you come to bind the book then make sure the cover notches are grouped together then copy and paste them. Place them so that the top one is the same distance from the top of the page as the bottom one is from the bottom of the page, but make sure you don’t resize them. This means that the holes in the inside pages will be in the same position as they are on the cover even though the cover is bigger than the internal pages. I hope that makes sense.

You can now add some cut-out shapes to your internal pages to make them even more funky! Insert an image or two and use the ‘Contour’ button in the ‘Layers’ Window to remove any lines you don’t want to cut by clicking on them to ‘turn them off’, then click ‘Contour’ again and select the image and the page layer and ‘Weld’ them together by clicking the ‘Weld’ option in the ‘Layers’ window or use ‘Weld’ in the right mouse button drop down list.

Cutting in the Cricut design space

Troubleshooting – if you press the ‘Go’ button but the ‘Mat Preview’ window doesn’t load properly and just hangs. You might also spot an orange message appearing underneath it saying ‘Global Flex Error’ (nicely hidden, so you might have to move the window down to see it). Try going back to your project workspace and making any hidden layers that you don’t want visible, ungroup them and delete them.

5. To cut out and score your notebook pages and covers don’t forget to select your cover or page shape, the centre score line and any notches you have made and attach them together before pressing ‘Go’ then follow the instructions to cut and score. Remember also to put your score tool into clamp ‘A’ on the machine!

Stitching the DIY notebook together

6. Once you have cut your cover and pages fold them and place them inside one another, then line up the internal pages with the cover page and punch a hole where the notches indicated, or if you didn’t use the notches trick use a ruler to help place the holes.

Tip – If you are using a thicker paper or card you might need to punch the holes individually on a couple of pages at a time and then put them together and align the holes.

adding a knot to the DIY notebook

7. Use a needle and thread to thread through the holes and then tie a slip knot. Tighten the slip knot as much as you can and then tie the two ends together with a permanent knot. Trim the threads as needed, I kept mine quite long. I also tied my knots on the outside of the books as I like the look, but you can always tie them on the inside of your book to hide them.

Covers of the DIY Cricut Explore notebooks

Now all you need to do is decorate the cover and start using them!

Inside of the DIY Cricut Explore notebooks

Do you recognise these cut-outs? They are die-cut files I made from my doodles and I show you how in my DIY Stamp making tutorial.

DIY Cricut Explore notebooks

Regular readers of my blog will know that I am a bit of a notebook and journal fanatic, so these are a great addition to my ever growing collection! Now I just need to decide what to put in them! What about you? What use would you like to make a notebook for?


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Like this? You might also like: 

Cricut Explore reviewJournaling Cards With the Cricut ExploreDIY Stamps With the Cricut Explore


Love To Stitch Mini Book Tutorial – Part 2

Welcome back to my free Love To Stitch Mini Book Tutorial series.

A couple of weeks ago I shared with you the making of the cover page of my stitching-inspired mini book altering in part 1 of my new tutorial series for Creative Expressions.

I’m back again this week to share with you the making of pages 1 and 2 in Part 2, so sit back and enjoy!

I wanted a simple double page spread to start the inside of the book.

As you can see from the front cover I’m not going for a totally vintage look with the Umount Vintage Sewing A5 Stamp Plate, so I’ve not gone overboard with the distressing,

but I have added some distressed colouring for texture and to bring the book together.

What You Will Need:

Eco-Green Crafts Board Book 4″ x 4″

Umount Vintage Sewing A5 Stamp Plate

Eco Green Acrylic Paints – Sand

Ranger Archival Ink Pad – Jet Black, Coffee, Vermillion

Baker’s Twine – Red

Large Polka Mask – can use the That Special Touch Mask

VersaMark ink pad

Distress inks – Tea Dye, Vintage Photo, Walnut Stain

Clear embossing powder


Old book pages

Tools – Sponge, brushes, blending tool

Heat tool

Golden Soft gel

Cosmic Shimmer Acrylic Glue

Hole punch

Step One – Preparing the Surface

Just as I did with the front cover I’ve started these pages with an old book page collage.

Glue old book pages over a small section of the left hand side of page 1. Once the collage is dry use the large polka dot mask and some thick Gesso to add some large, raised dots. Again, let the dots dry completely then use a sponge to smear a light layer of the Sand paint over both pages.

Pop over to Part 1 of this tutorial series to see how to make the dots and paint with the sponge in more details in Steps 1-3.

Step Two – Add Texture With Some Stamping

Once the pages are dry use the Coffee Archival ink pad and the hessian stamp from the kit to layer some stamping texture on the bottom right-hand corner of page 2.

TIP – For some of the stamping you may need to hold the page open and press with one hand on the stamp and the other on the back of the page to give a firm surface for the stamping.

Step Three – Make A Mini Tag

Trim a long, thin tag shape from card and heat emboss the tape measure stamp with clear embossing powder. Use the Distress inks and the blending tool to colour the tag and rub any excess ink off of the embossing with a damp soft cloth to make sure that the embossed relief ‘pops’. 

Don’t forget to colour the top section of the back of the tag as well as this will be poking out the top of the book when it is finished.

Step 4 – Add A Bit Of Balance

Use the blending tools and the Distress inks to add colour to the polka dot texture on page 1. Then rub the distress ink pads and the coffee Archival ink pad directly over the raised areas for even more texture.

TIP – This might take a long time to dry so try the heat tool gently (don’t over heat the area) and don’t shut the book until you are sure it is dry. Put a spare piece of paper between the pages if you have to close it before it is dry.

Step 5 – Finish the Tag

Wrap the Baker’s twine around the bottom of the tag and tie off. Then cut three small holes in the top of the tag with two holes next to each other and one hole above and in the middle. Now thread some Baker’s twine from back to front through the bottom two holes and then thread both ends back through the top hole and tie a knot in the end.

Step 6 – Stick It All Together

Stick the tag to page 2 with 3D-foam, stamp the sentiment with the Vermillion Archival ink and tear the edges before sticking to the tag.

Page 1 and 2 finished!

I’ll be back in a couple of weeks to share some more pages.

Thanks for popping by.


Related Articles:

Love To Stitch Mini Book Tutorial – Part 1

Blog, tutorial

Love To Stitch Mini Book Tutorial – Part 1

Welcome to part one of my Love To Stitch Mini Book Tutorial series.

I’ve got a mini-book for Creative Expressions to share with you and as I’m working with the Umount Vintage Sewing A5 Stamp Plate I thought I might go for a sewing theme – it seemed logical!

And, well, sewing does hold a special place in my heart.

My mum is a stitcher, both her mum and dad were stitchers, it is just in my blood.

I’m altering this mini book over the next few weeks and sharing the steps of this stitching-dedicated journal with you guys. 

What You Will Need:

Eco-Green Crafts Board Book 4″ x4″

Umount Vintage Sewing A5 Stamp Plate

Eco Green Acrylic Paints – Sand, Tide Pool

Ranger Archival Ink Pad – Olive, Jet Black


Baker’s Twine – Red

Large Polka Mask – can use the That Special Touch Mask


StazOn ink pad – Blazing Red, Jet Black

Old book pages

Scallop border die

Tools – Sponge, brushes

Golden Soft gel

Cosmic Shimmer Acrylic Glue

Marker pen for writing on acetate

Before I start I thought I would give you a closer look at the Eco-Green Crafts Board Book:

The book is made up of six pages, so that is 12 surfaces to alter plus the spine. Each page is made of layers of paper to a thickness of 3 mm.

So the 4″ by 4″ book is around 3.5 cm thick and stands freely, which makes it nice and easy to photograph! (Yes, that is a jar of Marmite in the background, I’m working in the kitchen again).

Step One – Preparing the surface

I started by glueing torn pieces of old book pages over the spine and part of the back and front of the cover.  I also covered a strip of spare card too. Then let the glue dry completely.

Step Two – Some Gesso Texture

I then applied a layer of gesso to the cover, spine and sides of the book, only a light covering to blend the book page collage into the surface. Then once this layer was dry I added a thick layer of gesso through the large Polka Dot mask and let it dry completely, you can also use texture paste if you like.

Step Three – Adding Colour

Next stage is to add a bit of colour, I added a layer of the Sand Eco-Green Crafts acrylic paint with a piece of kitchen sponge and let it dry before adding the Tide Pool paint to the outer edges. I also covered the strip of card too.

Step Four – Adding Depth

Once all the paint is dry I then brushed the Ranger Archival Olive ink pad over the edges and the gesso texture of the mini book and the strip of card too.

Step Five – And Now The Stamping Part

First up, I stamped the row of dressmaker dummies with the lettering background on acetate with StazOn and cut it out to stick as the background on the front cover. I then cut a piece of white card with a scallop edge die and layered it with the old book page strip, wrapped with Baker’s twine, and stuck them to the front.

I stamped the sewing machine, buttons and sentiment, cut them out and stuck them to the front cover then finished with a touch of stitching stamped over the acetate background with StazOn and finished with a marker pen that writes on acetate.

Thanks for popping by and see you next time for Part Two!


Related Articles:

Love To Stitch Mini Book Tutorial – Part 2