Past Blog Posts:

New Relic & Artifacts PLUS Artwork by Laura Carson!

Filed under Art Projects, Giveaways, Laura Carson, Newsletters, Sale, Steampunk, Tutorials, Vintage Vagabond Kit

Note: most of the links on this post no longer work, as we moved to a new Web site in 2018. However, you can see the supply list items from Laura’s project that are still available on the new site.

A couple quick announcements before getting to the eye candy…
First, we have a NEW FREE collage sheet offer starting today: a FREE Steampunk Collage Sheet with every order! Your free sheet will be Leslie’s choice from the Steampunk Collage Sheets. PLUS: that section is ON SALE for 50% off for this week only (and remember: all the collage sheet are on sale for 15% off). Note: if you order any of the Steampunk Collage Sheets, we’ll try to give you a free one that doesn’t duplicate your order (so you’ll have a surprise). Steampunk Collage Sheets Sale ends Friday night, April 24th.

AND the Spring Cleaning SALE announced in Thursday’s Newsetter continues through tomorrow! The ENTIRE Scrapbook Papers Section is On Sale for 40% off! Except for the New Junque Gypsy Papers (still on sale at the 15% discount price that all scrapbook papers and paper pads are normally priced at), everything in that big section is priced to clear some space! (Big section indeed: over 250 designs to choose from! Note: that may have decreased a bit as a few have already sold out.)

The Scrapbook Papers Sale ends Monday night, April 20th.

It’s time for another spectacular creation by Design Team Member Laura Carson. Expedition Africa — which includes Out of Africa & Vintage Maps Collage Sheets (and a Vintage Maps Digital Image Set). (And I’d recommend beginning by scrolling down a bit to see the broad view of Laura’s artwork.)

Perhaps you would like to join a group of intrepid explorers armed with only cameras and an adventurous spirit? You would? Well then get ready to delve into the heart of the Dark Continent… where animals are the esteemed explorers and humans? Meh, the mere species to be studied. (Which sounds about right to me!)

To start you’ll need a good travel trunk (that is made from our Steamer Trunk Mini Kit). I bet you thought that was a leather trunk, didn’t you? It’s actually covered in this amazing Kraft-Tex Paper Fabric (New and On Sale!) that looks and feels like leather but sews, cuts and washes just like fabric! Laura stained it with Vintage Photo Stain and then after it dried, coated it with Rock Candy Distress Crackle Paint. Pretty fabulous how it looks like a real little animal skin trunk, don’t you think? Then again, it is Laura Carson we’re talking about so moving on!

What’s next? A clever little suitcase made out of a Blank Altoid Tin, painted with Metal Patinas and then covered with cork sheet from the Tim Holtz Texture Surfaces pack to cover the front and back of the tin. The Texture Surfaces is pretty handy-dandy; it’s collection of adhesive-backed textured surfaces that can also be altered. Laura used a section from the burlap piece on a matchbox to make the smallest suitcase, put travel labels on all of the suitcases from the Vintage Travel Tags & Hardware Collage Sheet while the straps and handles are made from the Faux Suede Sheets.

The chest is made from a Paper Mache Treasure Chest and covered with paper from the Serengeti 8×8 Paper Pad (and is the paper pad that Laura used for her entire project). I love all of the tiny, rolled-up maps in the chest. Those are from the (New!) Vintage Maps Collage Sheet (also as a Digital Download Set — with 10 additional images not on the collage sheet) that Laura created just for this project. I think they’re adorable. Know what else I think is adorable? Sir Stompington III in his boots and hat looking into the trunk! I definitely need the Out of Africa Collage Sheet where he and all of his friends can be found so that I can create my own little story with them.

The crates which start from a 2 Inch Wooden Cube Block are SUPER easy to make, as are the trees which are made from the Kraft-Tex Paper Fabric. By the way, the Kraft-Tex Paper comes in TWO different colors! Natural and Black, both of which I need to get my hands on…

We have Laura’s Out of Africa Supply List for you to explore before you end up at Artfully Musing. Once you get to Artfully Musing, you’ll find a lot more pictures, tutorials and some free images (including Sir Stompington III’s cute little boots!) and bios on each explorer!



Hooray for the Mini Hardware Giveaway!

I’ve included these goodies from Laura’s Expedition Africa (note: that’s a link to photos of ALL the supplies — yes, lots more than this list!):
– Vintage Maps Collage Sheet
– Steamer Trunk Mini Kit
– Haunted Ship Travel Collage Sheet
– Out of Africa Collage Sheet
– Tiny Vintage Letters & Postage Collage Sheet
– Vintage Travel Tags & Hardware Collage Sheet
– Blank Altoids Tin
– Bronze Binoculars Charm
– Bronze Small Box Hinges
– Pronged Metal Handles
– Tiny Gold Buckles
– Fluted Ring Pull
– Mini Fancy Latch Set
– Small Box Latches
– 1 Inch Bronze Keys

And from the Steampunk Collage Sheet Sale:
Hardware Collage Sheet (which brings us up to 7 collage sheets… so many I had to take another photo below to show them all)

And one of the new items:
Antiqued Brass Winged Heart Charm

To enter the Mini Hardware Giveaway drawing all you have to do is leave a comment BELOW on this blog post TODAY or TOMORROW (the deadline is 11:59 pm PST, MONDAY NIGHT, April 20, 2015). AND tell me either what part of Laura’s project you’d like to try your hand at OR what technique Laura used that you found most surprising.

Don’t forget to leave your (hello! correct) email address, too, so I can contact the winner; your email address does not need to be made public. Note: I’m offering free shipping, too, but only within the USA. International shipping will still apply.

Please be patient! Spammers try to post crap here a lot so comments are moderated. So if you don’t see your post in the comments section, be patient and check back in a few hours before re-posting it, please!

After midnight, I’ll randomly pick the winner (via So make sure to check back to see who won! And check your mailbox on Thursday morning for the next Giveaway and Newsletter!

Hey, who won the Bookcase of Darkness Giveaway? That would be Dana Desmond! Please check your email for my message about getting your mailing address. (And Dana commented, “I would make a cabinet that might be found in the Dark Arts classroom at Hogworts.” Can’t wait to see it!)

Posted by Leslie, April 19th, 2015

113 responses to “New Relic & Artifacts PLUS Artwork by Laura Carson!”

  1. I would love to try the tent and some trees. But I always love me some hardware!

  2. phoebe diamond says:

    I would love to try making the animals in expedition outfits, I think I might make them into movable paper dolls and create a book for my nieces and nephew. That would be fun. They could get “housed” in a steamer trunk. Hmmmm… sure would be fun to win this.

  3. Lisa R. says:

    This is just fabulous! I hope luck is with me to win this one lol! Laura is so talented that it didn’t surprise me what she did for this theme. The texture of the suitcase she did makes me want to make one, just so I can feel for myself how realistic it is lol!! Fingers crossed!

  4. enrica p says:

    I would like to try everything! But I’d probably start with the treasure chest because it reminds me of one my parents used to have!

  5. Theresa G. says:

    Wow. Wow. Triple Wow. This is the greatest ever. That mini hardware makes me want to pack my mini clothes in a mini suitcase and go on a mini vacation!!!! 🙂

  6. Kristie says:

    I see lots of inspiration in this giveaway. Love the hardware and graphics! Hope I win!

  7. Gigi Jordan says:

    I especially love the vintage maps collage sheet. Makes me wish I could pack mini-me in the steamer trunk and go around the world!

  8. Pat Shaw says:

    Wow another masterpiece by Laura. Really hope to win this fabulous prize!!
    Love the African theme.

  9. cathy says:

    These are so cool! I like the leather fabric and how she worked that. Plus I love miniatures!

  10. Amy says:

    loved the suitcases

  11. Rosemary Sharon says:

    I am loving the tent…..but truly love the suitcases….I would like to see if I could duplicate that look……and the crates are awesome…..animals are always good…and would love to mini frame a map I think to go with all the above…..

  12. Noreen says:

    I’d like to try the finishes she used on the suitcases. Laura obviously had a great deal of fun creating her African safari!

  13. Virginia Smith says:

    I love this giveaway! The hardware is fantastic! I’ve got some altoid tins just waiting to become suitcases!

  14. Juniper Mainelis says:

    Love this!!!!

  15. Juniper Mainelis says:

    Love alpha stamps!

  16. Lina says:

    Would love to try to pull off the travel case!

  17. Mary Helene says:

    Love all the mini hardware pieces and the great collage sheets

  18. Shanna says:

    This is just stunning. Heading to the blog now to check out her post!

  19. Roxanne says:

    oh I just Love Laura’s blog and have been a ‘follower’ for a few years now! Her technique’s are great. I would like to try the Explorer travelers trunk with the ‘leather’ faux look on the outside…she really has achieved a realistic leather look and I love all the sweet metal embellishments inside…sure would love to win them! 🙂

  20. Maura Flood says:

    I would like to play with all this stuff. I’d especially like to try making a little suitcase out of an Altoid tin, the way Laura did. Her use of the metal patina with a cork texture sheet was brilliant.

  21. Lou Anne Colodny says:

    I would love this streamer trunk and suitcases////

  22. Sue Young says:

    The suitcase out of the Altoid tin!!!!! Love it and need to make it!

  23. Dena Cottrell says:

    Nothing surprises me about Laura Carsens creativity. She is so exceptionally talented. I like tent and the open trunk full of maps. I also like how the safari animals are dressed as though they are the ones on safari. Hope to win.

  24. gloria stafford says:

    What a wonderful assortment! Plus a map to show the way!

  25. Patti Flasch says:

    I love making things with Altoid tins! Thank you for offering another great giveaway.

  26. Helen says:

    I would love to try the Kraft-tex paper fabric. I would use it on the steamer trunk, and for covering teeny tiny books and journals.

  27. Karen says:

    I have tried the Kraft-tex paper fabric on other projects, but using it in this application in the giveaway would be fun to try. I am most interested in the trunks, and suitcases. I love the trunk with the drawers and etc.

  28. Marilyn H says:

    Laura’s project is amazing. I want to duplicate it all!

  29. Jill Michaels says:

    Oh my! I’m all over this luscious hardware. Would LOVE this package of goodness!

  30. Birgit says:

    The suitcases Laura made are fabulous — I would love to create them, too! 🙂

    Happy crafting,

  31. Kristie says:

    I am not familiar with Kraft fabric sheets or the texture sheets by Holtz. I use the linen and cotton fabric sheets in my miniature scenes, and am anxious to try these. This kit would be great to try in a miniature room box.

  32. I love everything here I want to win so bad thanks for the chance

  33. Gail Klein says:

    My first instinct was to say how much I love the suitcases that Laura did but I would love to try the trees!!!! I also love the giveaway of the mini hardware and see some great steampunk collages that they could be used for!

  34. Jennifer J says:

    omg! This is amazing and a fabulous project.

  35. Stefanie says:

    I love expedition maps!! Think I’d have to try the treasure chest!!

  36. Janet Anderson says:

    Laura’s projects area constant inspiration. As a travel agent, I am amazed by what people travel with. I really want to try the trunk as it has so much amazing detail.

  37. Dennise says:

    the trunk, love it!! not only am I getting one for myself but my two mini friends (we make 1/12″ Doll house miniatures). Yes thank you so much.

  38. Carolyn Bowlby says:

    A trip to Africa without leaving home.

  39. Kim Lucak says:

    Love the Zebra, very fun!!! Great for homeschooling 🙂

  40. Lorna E. says:

    Laura is crazy talented. I would also love to attempt making one of her suitcases but the item that really caught my attention was the the little compass made with a cutout from the collage sheet glued to a vintage typewriter key. Didn’t Alpha Stamps offer typewriter keys once?

  41. Sandy says:

    This brings to mind one of my favorite heroes, Osa Johnson. I am going to make this in honor of her.

  42. sally peters says:

    What cool stuff. Right up my traveling alley.

  43. Megan Warren says:

    I love the leather look on the trunk, I’d love to try that. I love the whole scene here, it belongs in a shadowbox on the wall proudly displayed. The elephant looking in the trunk. I think it’s my favorite part.

  44. Cherie says:

    Wonderful Giveaway!

  45. Ruth Anna says:

    I’d like to try making the luggage. It looks quite fun!

  46. Lou Anne H. says:

    The steamer trunk and treasure chest are the two things I’d start with. Love all of it!

  47. Dawn says:

    I am so impressed with all of the artists that design for Alpha Stamps. Their imagination and creativity are boundless. I am very interested in the idea of making a suitcase out of an Altoid tin.

  48. cathrine bolin says:

    Gosh, I would love this!

  49. Sandy says:

    The hardware…the collage sheets. How cool is this give-away.

  50. Kathy S says:

    The suitcases from tins are amazing—and the Rock Candy Crackle effect is wonderful. I’d begin with those.

  51. Nancy Erdman says:

    Is there anything that Laura can’t do? The suitcases and trunks are amazing. Nancy

  52. Sue C says:

    I would love to use her technique on the steamer trunk with the Kraftex paper applied to some blank altoid tins for inserting little accordion mini travel journals and rolled up maps of my imaginary trip to Africa! Thank you for another generous and fun giveaway!

  53. Kim R says:

    I love a great adventure! Awesome kit!

  54. lynn says:

    I love travel themes and the supplies can take us most anywhere in the world.
    I have been a follower of lauras and think the travel cases would be fun to try
    thank you for a chance on this giveaway

  55. Luanne Shoup says:

    I would like to try painting the artifacts.

  56. KIM says:

    This is the perfect giveaway.
    I have always wanted to try making
    something from an Altoids tin.
    Thanks Alpha Stamps for a chance to win.

  57. Janet Turner says:

    Thanks again for all the great ideas.

  58. barbara macaskill says:

    Laura blows me away with her amazing creations! I really want to try making the suitcases with the texture surfaces! LOVE her Safari scene so much!

  59. Traci says:

    I love everything about Laura’s project and her collage sheets are perfect. She is so amazing if I had to pick one thing about her project it would be trunks. I love the travel trunk and the roll top trunk. I am definitely going to make those. I would LOVE to win this giveaway-all of the design team ideas for the serengeti are awesome. Alpha Stamps is the BEST!!! I LOVE getting your emails so much inspiration!!

  60. Maryellen says:

    Oh, I would have to say the safari hats on the elephant and lion.

  61. Thalia Kottke says:

    I love it!Would be so fun take a trip.

  62. Regina Salvador says:

    Love the mini hardware!

  63. Carole Carlson says:

    I’d like to try out making the fabric paper look like leather.

  64. Lori Turner says:

    Would love to win this awesome giveaway! I’ve been wanting to try making a mini-trunk and this would be perfect! Blessings, Lori

  65. Karen Mallory says:

    I love Laura’s art! I would try and make her whole scene! Love the animals as the characters! LOL

  66. Verna Stapleton says:

    I adore that the animals have come into camp and are wearing the missing safari members accessories! Very special when you want to be in that scene, wonderful!!

  67. Rise St Arno says:

    Maps, maps, maps. As a retired travel agent I love maps and vintage maps are the best!

  68. Jen R says:

    Loving it all. I’d love to try the suitcase. I just bought some mini size travel brochures and travel docs for my dollhouse. Now all I need to do is make the suitcase.

  69. April Dudko says:

    Those whimsical animals! What a hoot! Laura has a very fertile mind.

  70. Lana says:

    simply delightful!

  71. Emily N says:

    Another fantastic giveaway!!

  72. Michelle says:

    I like the altoid tin suitcase the best. If I were to try to replicate something, that would be it. (Maybe not a suitcase but the patina.) It’s hard to pull off miniatures that look authentic (as opposed to, say, doll house furniture) but that one really looks like a (functional?) miniature suitcase; it’s well done.

  73. Ginette says:

    I think Laura Carson have the imagination of 10

  74. Jennie says:

    OMG, I would LOVE to try my hand at those adorable crates!

  75. angelic says:

    I love the cute miniatures!

  76. Daylan says:

    Lovely! Thank you for another opportunity!

  77. Jill Noblitt says:

    What a great giveaway! Love the suitcase and travel theme!

  78. Lisa anMills says:

    I would like to make the trunk with the animals or I would like to make the tent with the suitcases in front of it with all the maps. Thanks for giving me a chance to be in these giveaways.

  79. Jean Marmo says:

    Just so much fun!!!

  80. Judy Northrup says:

    I love the suitcase. Just in time for a mini-vacation!

  81. Lori D. says:

    I’d like to try to make the steamer trunk! Love it all. Thank you!

  82. Carol Slowik says:

    Definitely love ALL of Laura’s technics but what I find most intriguing are the awesome stories she comes up with! How fun! Thanks for taking us on safari with you Laura and thank you Alpha Stamps for the opportunity to win this giveaway!

  83. Kathy W says:

    I love those little suitcases. Thanks for the chance to win those wonderful supplies.

  84. Gerri herbst says:

    Oh my this project is the story it tells.

  85. Kimberly says:

    0h my, definitely the steamer trunk and Altoid tin suitcases! Been looking for something cute for my grandson to put a lost tooth in. He will shortly be at the age. Altoid tin suitcase will fit nicely under a pillow

  86. Brenda Lubrant says:

    I lve how she made the tent and all of the little things inside it. I would like try making the little luggage.

  87. Iris Pistor says:

    I would love to try the mini suitcases…so cute….can’t wait to win this one. Thanks!!

  88. Carol Rowland says:

    I’d like to duplicate the whole thing- it is so darn cute. But definitely want to do the steamer trunk and the luggage. Would love to win this.

  89. Jennifer Pospichal says:

    That little travel trunk is a project I’d particularly like to try! I love it all, though!

  90. Marcia says:

    I think the elephant with shoes and a hat is brilliant. Laura always teaches to think outside the box…like the book on the desk…whodda thunk it? Not I. No, not I.

  91. Julie F. says:

    Please enter my name in your

    Thank you

  92. Nelda Johnson says:

    More fun things! I’m going to try my hand at making the trunk and suitcases. Can’t wait to win this one!

  93. Lynn Morton says:

    When I opened the email & saw this it immediately reminded me of the dioramas I made as a child!That was a pleasant memory….thank-you……….

  94. yvette leblanc says:

    just trying mini things. Love it

  95. Joan says:

    The trunk and suitcases are something to try. I like the use of the Kraft Tex, going to have to get me some and play with it. I love the entire scene.

  96. Stacia says:

    Neat stuff to make a journey…

  97. Jackie P Neal says:

    Of course I love the tent and would love to give it a go- but those trunks,steamers and suitcases- wow! So cool!!
    ps..Laura’s new sheets are fab!!

  98. Amanda Miller says:

    This is really cool!! I would love to try and make all of it! The new relic stuff is amazing!!

  99. kim says:

    I’d love to try altering the altoid tin! Have always wanted to and the post is very inspiring to try! Thanks so much for a chance!~kim

  100. Cindy F. says:

    I am in love with all of this but am totally in awe of the the steamer trunk full of maps. Would like to try making one.

  101. Marge McInerny says:

    I would definitely make the travel trunk using Laura’s supply ideas. Her creative mind and willingness to share her talents makes this 80 year old crafter thankful I have found your websight.

  102. Karen C. says:

    I would really like to make several diorama frames for my great-nephews room; what kid (young or old) doesn’t dream of travel and adventure?! Laura did another outstanding job on this one; thanks very much for the opportunity to win!

  103. Leanna Alverson says:

    I love the suitcases! I collect vintage suitcases so making the miniatures is very interesting to me. And I love all the mini hardware. This is definitely a drawing I’d love to win!

  104. Jen C says:

    I would definitely love to try the tent and the altoid tin suitcase. So cute and clever!

  105. LeAnn says:

    Laura’s project is amazing! The steamer trunks are my favorite. That is also what I would want to try my hand at.

  106. BarbJ says:

    I would like to try the steamer trunk, actually there isn’t anything I wouldn’t like to try!!!

  107. Arminta says:

    I love miniatures and African safaris from times past. I know I would enjoy making miniature luggage and steamer trunks.

  108. Nancy S says:

    I’d just love to try my hand at the mini suitcases and perhaps expand to mini matchboxes with doors that open…..

  109. Sunny says:

    Well, I’ve always wanted to go on a (photo) safari – this would be great!

  110. Sokat says:

    Your work is no joke. The attention to details and finishes is quite breathtaking. I would start with the tent, only because I need the assurances that I could build around it. Incredible.

  111. Tammy says:

    I would love to win

  112. Amazing attention to detail – as always – thanks for the chance to win 🙂

  113. ginger says:

    There is nothing of Laura’s I wouldn’t want to make!! One of my favorite designers!! I really like the steamer trunk and suitcases. Thanks for the great giveaway!!