Friday, September 09, 2011

Where to go from here......

to start a "Collaborative Blog."

It seems just to "start" the way to go.
So.............think of this as a place to ask questions....and answer them.  A place to post things of interest to you. (If they are of interest to you, they will also be to someone else.)
gg designs is going to start with TWO ideas.....
Love "success" stories. Not the labored ones so much, but the serendipitous ones that are sparked while doing something else. Here are two "home made" items now produced commercially, that "grew" out of a specific experience.
First..... This Tyvek Billfold:

Remember Duck Tape Billfolds....popular not too long ago?
Somebody took the idea and translated it into a Tyvek Billfold. (Tyvek is very strong and waterproof and extremely useful)
ggd was so intrigued we tried it. Easy enough, with a little patience. Actually, easier than the duck tape version but, if you don't want to tackle creating the billfold from scratch and would prefer just creating the design, here's a short cut:

Or just click on the blank billfold above
While you're there, check out the huge (and fun) variety of already completed designs at
or click on any of the colored versions.
We think these would be great full size or in a"mini" version to hold gift certificates (one of the most popular gifts these days).

* * * * * *
Second on the list of "wish I'd thought of that" (or, I thought of that, wish I had acted on it) items.........
While we've never been very good at it (seem to need more structure, predictability and control than they offer) monotypes have always held a fascination. Once, while checking out the procedure one more time, we found a book"Making Monotypes Using a Gelatin Plate."
Not sure what the allure was here, except that it was a bit reminiscent of the Hectograph or "ditto machine" procedures which produced purple, smelly, barely readable hand outs. (Talk about dating yourself!)
Anyhow, after mixing up a number of batches of gelatin, with inconsistent results, that craft got abandoned and stuck away somewhere.
Recently however, at a sale at Cloth, Paper, Scissors (more about this addictive site later) ggd found premade and reusable gelatin plates called "Gelli Arts Gel Printing Plates."

Commercially Made Gelatin Printing Plate

The video below shows the whole process. Looks so simple we're tempted to try it again!
Gelli Arts Gelatin Printing Plate Demonstration
After watching this demo, browse other YouTube gelatin print, monotype and collograph printing demos to find limitless ideas for background papers and exciting print images for your cards and other projects.
We didn't initially like the "looseness" of monotype but it is perfect for backgrounds. (Some of the You Tube samples and examples will have you running for the gelatin!) the adventurous among you who want to give it a try, we'd love to hear about your experiences with it and see some of your results.
No, ggd doesn't get any compensation for steering you toward these items. Just really excited to be exploring what's "out there."
While our personal interest is still stamp carving, and it would seem a departure to be exploring Cloth, Paper, Scissors, it is surprising how much information and many products are adaptable and useful to stampers and carvers and paper and collage artists.
Will be talking about and exploring CPS because ggd now gets almost daily emails with inviting new books/mags/products etc.
This is where we are starting. Where we go will be up to you. Tell us what you want to know or what you've discovered that you just have to share!
Let's have fun!


  1. Well don't tell me my comment from that last time didn't transfer. Sheesh... ROFL

    OK so here goes again.
    I like that this is a pop up comment box so I can go back and forth on the blog page as I notice things.

    You've got to get a link on there to your stamps catalog. Had to go back to your email for it.

    I just started taking an online class - started on Monday and having fun, if not having enough time and energy to do it all day BIG Grin. But finished 1 card using all the techniques from day 1 and hopefully will get to upload it later this afternoon. All about RESIST.

    Now I'm going to start on the Day 2 projects - punches/die cuts and embellishing them.
    Have a great day

  2. CPS is a great site... I'll have to watch the gelli vid a little later... must get on with my to-do list instead of sitting in front of the computer :-)) Oh, my son didn't make a duck tape billfold... he covered an existing, slightly tearing billfold with a crazy print duck tape... worked well.

  3. Yesterday, one of the ladies in my card making group showed up with a new duck tape tote bag, lovingly made by her grandsons. It was very colorful.

    I saw the Gelli video and it sure looks like fun. I did some monoprints years ago on a plexiglass plate.

  4. DUCK TAPE TOTE BAG! WOW!!! I end up getting STUCK in the tape. Find it frustrating to work with but once done, knowing duck tape, the project should last FOREVER!

    Fab/Wanda.....any chance we could see pictures of the bag and the billfold?

    Tyvek last forever too.....anybody who makes something of it, please let us see it....particularly how you incorporated stamps into it.

    AND.........Yogi......I'm impressed that with all you know you are still taking classes. Guess that's part of what makes your work show such variety and craftsmanship.

    You said you didn't like doing the gel monoprinting. Fab did. I didn't have great success before but I think I was trying too hard to control it. For backgrounds and more experimental projects I think it might just serve to loosen me up some. Plan to give it another try soon.

  5. Love your new site. Love your products...came here first when Deb Lovett gave that excellent spray starch mica powder tutorial...still make those papers!

    I do not envy your job of changing the blog....tedious and frustrating...but you have done a great job! I signed up and have favorited (is that a word?) this site!

    And it is easier to read on my droid...ahhh technology!

  6. Thanks for joining in Pat.

    I really liked all the background techniques Deb provided. AND they are still up if you go to the Challenges area in the Catalog.
    Didn't remove anything (at least not deliberately), just tried to make it more assessable.

    "have favorited (is that a word?) this site!"

    : ) All this new technology has forced us to be more creative with our tech vocabulary. Can't wait for it to show up in the new, revised dictionary. (However that does happen pretty fast.)

    Sometime, when you have time, show us your stuff....(Hmmm.....sounds like a new page "aborning")......with your use of the backgrounds.

    I have used some of the paper for small gifts......since (shame/blush/embarrassment) I don't make cards all that much.

    Anyway....welcome....thanks for joining in.

  7. I have a 6" x 6" gelli. What to do with it?! Who better than ggdesigns to come to the rescue? Seriously, I would love to take a class/experience a session on the gelli. Keep it up, please, Charlotte, I have always learned so much "hands on" from your blog.

  8. Hi Serra/Sally!

    What a nice thing to say about the blog.

    Your enthusiasm is one of the factors that made me seriously consider a more active, easy to use blog and simplifying the catalog. It's fun to see somebody enjoy themselves with art and crafting.

    As for the gelatin printing plates, until somebody "out there" in gg designs' land wants to step up and do a tutorial, I'd suggest watching some of the great U Tube videos. They show the basics to get you started.

    Also....all the background techniques from Deb, Ida and Yogi (see the Challenges section in the Catalog) are worth reading before you start. They all show the delightful surprises these various techniques have in common.

    A lot of the success is in just enjoying the "happy accidents." A fairly soft brayer is probably your tool of choice for you don't damage the plate and so it is easier to "smoosh" (to use a technical term" the paint around. soon as the endless dinking with the site (every change has a ripple effect and the "fixes" just keep coming, endlessly) I'll break out the gelatin and give it another try.

    By the way......not with your purchased gelatin plate, but with a home made one, a giant jack-o-lantern cut out of the gelatin would give a great shape to practice with.

    Anyway....first to U Tube and then on to the fun.
    PLEASE share your adventure with us all!



  9. Whoops! P.S. (I always think of something I forgot AFTER I hang up!) That certainly dates me !
    Anyway....I haven't watched ALL of the gelatin videos but so far I don't think anyone has mentioned that you need to add some amonia to your home made gelatin....otherwise it's a petri dish!


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