Monday, August 27, 2012

Halloween Banner with a Vintage Touch

 One of my first love of blogs came from the visual feast of vintage images over at Karen's The Graphics Fairy. She is one of the most generous souls I've run across in blogdom, giving her readers one or two new vintage images a day......every day! It's never been easy for me to use vintage images in my crafts, but those images are invariably among my favorites - Halloween in particular. I have downloaded so many of her great images, that I finally screwed up my courage, and made a banner. (As it happens, only one of the images I used, a pretty witch, came from Karen's collection. Just search her blog for Halloween images though, and I bet you will have an instant need for all things Halloween.)

First, since the theme was an alphabet, of sorts, I went through my images looking for pics that could go with each letter, and then found adjectives that could alliterate with each. The letters I used were a no-brainer - the glorious alphabet was from Dover. (Sign up for Dover's great free images here.) The font is beautiful and is rendered in fall colors.

Next came the background patterned paper. Recollection Papers at Michaels provided a set of fall hued backgrounds of the same pattern, helping me create a cohesive look throughout when combined with the fonts. At this stage I started becoming overwhelmed with managing the elements. Then, inspiration hit!

I had used Microsoft's 'Publisher' for other kinds of projects, and I think it is the most intuitive and easily used of all their programs. It handles pictures, cropping, resizing, and text beautifully. Your layout can be tweaked until it is just perfect, and nothing has been 'glue-committed'. (You can even select your layered art and save it as a flat picture to use elsewhere.) This method has liberated the way I think about composing my collages.

 Once I had the banner fixed, I copied all the separate images needed, on to new pages in the same document. Just these pages were then printed, cut out, and assembled on 4.5"X 6.5" DCWV black chipboard. Buttons, glitter, ultra thick clear embossing powder on the letters, and scrapbook embellishments, finished the look. The panels are held together with two short lengths of ribbon hot glued at the top and bottom on the backs to act as hinges.

This new way of working has absolutely liberated me from my novice hangups. It has proved to be so much fun, that I am now working on an entire Halloween alphabet collage, and a Christmas banner much like this one. If you have any questions concerning about how to use this method, I would be happy to answer your questions.

Thank you so much for taking the time to look at this. I would love for you to leave a comment, especially so I will know if this is something that interests you too, and something I should share in the future.

Happy Halloween, or at least the thought of cooler weather!
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