Craft shopping in New York City: Envelopper

It’s one of those “finds” which is akin to a little girl stumbling into a heretofore unknown candy store and you see all the goodies inside and gawk. Then you stop resisting and decide you MUST go in.

I saw what looked like art related materials for paper crafting, and I couldn’t even see a real sign. It turns out that the name of the store was painted on the farthest window display which I didn’t actually see until I was leaving the area. They’re called Envelopper and have a wide variety of paper stock for cards, stationery and envelopes primarily. But they are more than just a paperie or paper store. Besides providing supplies for the brave and enterprising who would rather do their invitations themselves, they offer a full-range of printing options for those who would like to entrust that to the experts.

NYC: Envelopper - quite the paper store

They also have a wide selection of writing tools (i.e., fountain pens and markers) and inks. On the papercrafting side, they have a whole section devoted to boxes and other such containers, embellishments and a wide assortment of beautiful gifts.
NYC: Envelopper - quite the paper store

They have stickers and journals galore and one thing that I really drew me to stay and linger was that they sold Christian Lacroix Journals.(See the shelf on the right side.)
NYC: Envelopper - quite the paper store
I had first encountered these gorgeous journals at the departure lounge of one of the international terminals of JFK Airport in December, and I couldn’t help but swoon over the gorgeous cover designs and paper inside. They came in different sizes and thicknesses to suit the different tastes of journalers and diary keepers — and I would have snapped one up but I couldn’t make up my mind about which one I would actually grab and the bigger ones were both pricey and heavy. (Do I really want to spend $50 on a journal?)

Journals by Christian Lacroix

They came in different sizes and thicknesses to suit the different tastes of journalers and diary keepers — and I would have snapped one up but I couldn’t make up my mind about which one I would actually grab and the bigger ones were both pricey and heavy. (Do I really want to spend $50 on a journal? Yet they had the smaller journals which were around $20.)

Journals by Christian Lacroix

Pity that I was in the hurry to get back to the office.  I was curious about the various embellishments lining shelves and walls of the front portion of the store.

NYC: Envelopper - quite the paper store

These GelGems are a curious embellishment I’d love to give a try one of these days.  However I was drawn to the postcards and the journals.  Time was runnning out.  I am also very curious about their printable magnet sheets in different shapes and sizes.  Hmmmmm… perfect souvenir for those planning a party or as a DIY project for Moms like me with tons of pictures to share and post.

I managed to grab some fuschia pink card stock and a bunch of ocre envelopes in the appropriate size which were half off.  (Talk about a weird combination) I hope to use the card stock with my Spellbinders Grand Calibur which was been hibernating in its box for quite a while now.  Can’t wait!

I am definitely going back to the Envelopper very soon.  You’ll find them on 45 W 21st Street between 5th and 6th Avenue in the Chelsea/Gramercy/Flat Iron area.

Work in progress: My second serendipity background

My Serendipity Background - First Three Layers

Like my first serendipity background, I used torn newspaper to form the base collage of the sheet.  I then sprayed some ink on a plastic surface and dabbed and pressed the collage onto the mat of colors.  I sprayed the areas that didn’t get saturated to “even out” the composition.

I try not to muddle my serendipity background too much, and at the end of the day try not to further embellish it beyond what has been put on it.  Towards the end, I tend to put down layers more deliberately forming a design that would be Artist Trading Card size or ATC-size friendly.  (2.5″ x 3.5″)

Although it should be done on a traditional 12×12 scrapbook page, I did this one on a repurposed manila folder that was letter size.  I wanted more “room” and I ended up cutting more than the usual 12.  After the ink dried, I painted on a layer of modpodge.

Serendipity Background 2 - Halfway through

I love using pressed flowers in my Artist Trading Cards, and while I have two batches on hand at home in my “craft cave”, I couldn’t find them after stashing my craft supplies in boxes temporarily.  I had to improvise.  I have four hydrangeas that are dried and in a vase on my credenza which I “regenerated” by immersing the dried petals in hot water.  Once “softened”, I modpodged them onto the master board.  I had tried pasting swatches of a damask paper napkin but it practically “disappeared” into the background.

Here it is upclose:

Serendipity Background 2 - Halfway through, upclose

I also stamped it with double cirlces using the inner rim of a roll of tape in a bronze acrylic paint shade.

I tried to rubber stamp acrylic paint flourishes which unfortunately did not “float” as well as I had hoped it to, and the final touch was using filing orange labels (those round circles used to color-code files which I painted over with gold.

Serendipity Background 2 - Finished MasterBoard

To laminate the whole piece, I painted it with a generous coating of modpodge once again.  My serendipity background master board!

A happy accident: Print over Print

Sometimes accidents can lead to very positive outcomes like this one.. Here’s something you can do even without any fancy graphics software.

I’ve been working on this card inspired by an “accidental” printing over an already printed photograph. I printed the photo as is, then accidentally printed a background paper over it lending it a ghost-like blur that I quite liked..

Handmade card: Photo on Photo 1

I know this effect can be achieved by using a “transparency” with the proper graphics software, but that dilutes the original picture in a way that I wouldn’t want. Here it looks as if the original picture had been printed on a transparent background.

For effect, I then printed a clear black and white version of the same photo and cut out a “window” and put it on top of the bigger printout. You can see the difference in texture here. Voila!

Handmade card: Photo on Photo 2

To add some “texture”, I “mod podged” the top of the black and white photo giving it a linen-like coarseness. Then I applied some gold acrylic paint edging on the four sides of that piece, and the bottom edge of the bigger card

Handmade card: Photo on Photo 4

I like the depth that layering provides — so instead of printing the black and white as part of the bigger picture, I did it separately and it’s an obvious addition to the whole frame. The gold edging also adds a different dimension to the black and white picture.