Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas, everyone! After the holidays and when things have settled down i'll be updating. i was following Tim Holtz's 12 Tags of Christmas (only have 2 left to complete!) and will post pictures of my own creations.

Hope everyone has a wonderful holiday!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Fun Foam Stamps with the Frugal Crafter!

The Frugal Crafter is back with a tip that some of you may already know about but i only recently discovered. We all love our rubber and clear stamps, but it's nice to find cheaper ways to make a consistent impression. Today i'd like to share with you a way to use fun foam to make stamps. i'd heard about this a few months ago but wasn't sure about the details until i found a great book at my local library. It's a huge volume simply called Stamp!; the authors are listed on the back page as Sharilyn Miller and Becky Auth and it was published by Quarry. i might have the second author's name wrong, and the book's at home (and i'm not) so i can't sneak a peek to verify. i've looked online and can't find this book, though there's one called Stamp Art that looks like it has some of the same projects...hmm. Anyway, the one i have is HUGE and filled with awesome ideas on how to make impressions aside from the usual stamps, as well as techniques and projects. It's like a stamper's bible! i highly reccomend it!

So, on to the fun foam stamps. First, find something to make an impression with, something textured. Leaves and branches can work as long as they're thick and defined. i tried a fern and it just wasn't thick enough for the foam to mold around it. i'm still playing with this, so i can let you know more results later, but i've had success with 2 items so far - a fat little sun bead and a piece of drywall tape (mesh screen might work even better!). Have your item at the ready as you heat a piece of fun foam with your heat (embossing) tool for 30-45 seconds. Then, quickly press the foam onto the item and hold it there for a bit, smushing all over. Sometimes, depending on the item you're using, you might have better results pushing the item onto the foam instead. If you don't like how it turned out, just reheat the foam and try again. You can even use rubber stamps to make a negative of your original rubber stamp.

Here's the sun bead, the foam stamps i made using it and the impressions they left when inked up. They're by no means perfect, but hey, i love the distressed look! To stamp, i just use masking tape to temporarily adhere the foam to an acrylic block. If you find a better way, please let me know!

Here's the drywall tape stamp with the tape and the image. i redid this one 3-4 times, reheating and repressing and this was the best i could do. i think if the item you use has good, deep impressions you'll have much better luck. Also, i think thicker foam might work better, but i used what i had, which was just the stuff you buy in sheets at Wal-mart or any craft store.

So, there you have it! Try it out, see what works for you and let me know your own results! i'd love to see what you guys can come up with!

Thanks, as always, for visiting, and have an artful day!

Friday, October 23, 2009

A little snippet from my art journal...

Just a piece of a recent page from my AJ. The photo is of my son when he was very young, maybe about 2. i always loved that picture.

Thanks for looking! Have a great day!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Christmas will be here too soon... i started making cards about a month ago. i hope i can afford the postage this year! Might have to scale back my list...

This card was a lot of fun to make. i started with navy blue CS and stamped the branches with white pigment ink. Then i splattered some white paint on top. i punched the edge, added the ribbon and then added the main image on top. i love this little tree stamp!

Ingredients: CS-stash; stamps-can't remember the set name, but it's by Inkadinkado, the branch is from Leafy Silhouettes by...? oops, can't remember...; ink-Colorbox chalk, Pallette Hybrid, Colorbox pigment, Ranger Archival; ribbon-Michael's; Sharpie; star brad-Jo-Ann's; white acrylic paint.

Thanks for stopping by everyone!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Halloween made with glitter and salt...

Another Halloween card! Amazing, considering i used to never make them.

i also never use glitter on a card (i like glitter glue more) because it's so messy, but i had this black glitter and just went for it. It's a chunky glitter, not fine enough, so it didn't work as well as i'd hoped. Still, i think it came out ok. i might give this one to my son.

The background was made using one of my favorite techniques. It's normally something you'd do using watercolors or watered-down acrylics, but i used Distress Inks - i rubbed them on the paper and then sprayed it with water. No matter the medium, make sure it's wet on the paper and then sprinkle salt over it. i find kosher salt and rock salt work best, but try table salt, too. What happens is the salt absorbs some of the color and leaves some neat effects. Try it! Just wait until it's completely dry before you rub the salt way.

Ingredients: CS-stash; stamps-Autumn Foliage by Inkadinkado, grass from Tree Time (?) by Inkadinkado, alphas by Studio G; ink-Ranger Distress, Ranger Archival, Colorbox pigment (white); Elmer's glue; black glitter; dimensional adhesive; Stickles; pop-dots; orange marker.

Thanks for visiting! Hope you all have a wonderful day!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Just a little Autumn card...

This is my favorite time of year, and has been for as long as i can remember. i made this card a week or so ago and i like the artsy, rustic feel of it. i used UTEE, and in some places the UTEE spread and stuck and caused a sort of splatter pattern. i didn't intend it, but i like the outcome!

i started by sponging Distress Ink on white cardstock, then embossing with UTEE. Next, i sponged on Versafine Onyx Black and Distress Broken China, with the UTEE acting as a resist.

i used pop-dots to adhere this panel to a background stamped with bleach first, then Versamark, and added Pearl-Ex powder in Antique Gold. Pretty basic, but as colorful as Autumn in all its glory!

Ingredients: CS-stash; stamps-Leafy Silhouettes by...?, words by Studio G; ink-Ranger Distress, Versafine, Versamark; Pearl-Ex; bleach; UTEE; pop-dots.

Thanks for stopping by! Have a lovely day!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Let this caged bird fly...

This is a collage i did recently. i started by painting 140 lb. watercolor paper with antique white acrylic paint. Then i masked off certain areas - the birdcage and the swirls at the bottom - using artists' masking fluid. The next step was to rub on some Distress Ink and add some stamping (flowers, dots, leaves). i then removed some of the masking fluid and stamped the birds flying out of the cage; i wanted some to remain in the cage and some outside. i next removed all the masking fluid, added more stamping, rubbed on a light coat of antique white acrylic paint, added some Stickles to the birds and called it done. Oh, and i outlined the birdcage with a Sharpie. i think that's it... :) Sounds like it all happened quickly but it was actually a process that took a few days and i stumbled a bit along the way. The flowers i was unhappy with, but after buffing a little with acrylic paint that seemed to help.

Thanks so much to anyone who stops by. Please leave a comment and let me know what you think! i can accept criticism. ;)

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Happy Halloween...almost...

Happy Saturday! Hope everyone has a great weekend.

Here's another of my attempts at a Halloween card. i liked this card up until i added the birds at the end. Ofcourse i once again used Distress Inks in the background. i really love all that those inks can accomplish.

Thanks for looking!

Ingredients: CS-stash, glossy cardstock by Ranger; stamps-Winter Trees (i think), can't remember who makes it, Rummage Alphabet by Making Memories, bird from Maison Frames by Inkadinkado, french script from Travel Time by Inkadinkado; ink-Ranger Distress, Ranger Archival; brads-Jo-Ann's; Stickles; pop-dots.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Hi, everyone! Hope you're all having a good day. Just one card to share; i made it a few months ago. The first photo shows it with the envelope.
This is a pretty basic card, using glossy paper and alcohol inks as a background, but i like how it came out. You can almost never go wrong with AI's.

Ingredients: CS-Bazzill, stash; stamps-Cosmos Collage (i think that's the name) by Lost Coast Designs; ink-Ranger Alcohol Inks, Ranger Archival; copper acrylic paint; eyelets-American Crafts, MM; star embellishment-unknown.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

...another page from my art journal.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Embrace Happiness.

i think maybe i have an obsession with Distress Inks, but hey, there could be worse things. For this card i did a resist with clear embossing powder before adding my ink. A basic layout and a quick card to put together, but fun nonetheless.

Ingredients: CS-Colorbok, stash; stamps-clock Tim Holtz Life's Possibilities Stamper's Anonymous, bird Studio G, square bird Inkadinkado, sentiment Papertrey Ink; ink-Tim Holtz Distress Ink, Colorbox, Ranger Archival; embossing powder-Stampendous; brad-MM; ribbon-Offray; Stickles; pop-dots.

Thanks for stopping by today!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Art Journal Pages.

One of my very favorite things to do as an artist is to build layers. It takes time, and i love every second! Sometimes i get so carried away that there's nothing left of some of the previous layers. i really love the look of painting/smudging white on the final layer to soften and conceal some areas.

Thanks for looking! Hope everyone has a wonderful day!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Just a reminder that when you sit down to create, don't be afraid. Your art can be anything you want it to be. And if you don't like what you've made, it can always be cut up and pasted into a collage. Or recycled. Or hidden away, never to be seen again. No matter what, you'll learn something from your mistakes, and often mistakes turn into happy accidents or the discovery of a new technique. Just relax and play and you can't go wrong. Time spent making art is never time wasted.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Not your average Halloween card...

i make cards for all kinds of occasions, but for some reason i rarely make any for Halloween. Recently, though, i've been inspired by non-traditional and vintage Halloween images from back issues of Somerset Studio and RubberStampMadness. i'm realizing that Halloween cards don't always need to be cute or covered with pumpkins and ghosts. This card came from that recent revelation.
i love playing with Distress Inks, so this card was a blast to make.

Ingredients: CS/paper-Colorbok, stash, watercolor paper; stamps-Square Face Frame HamptonArt, sun unknown, swirls/star from "Chocolate Chalet" Cloud 9 Design, star "Loves Me, Loves Me Not" Technique Tuesday, text "Distress Background" Limited Edition, Be Magical unknown; ink-Tim Holtz Distress Ink, Ranger Archival; star brad-Jo-Ann Scrap Essentials; Stickles; pop-dots.

Have a magical and inspiring day!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

A peek inside my current art journal.

First off, thanks to anyone who still visits my blog despite my sporadic posting habits. We're still without high speed internet at home, though apparently the phone company's working on that...ahem. i can't believe we moved from the boonies to a more populated area and still don't have high speed available, aside from satellite, and i am NOT paying those prices.

Anyway, i hope everyone's doing ok! We're good, though the economy is really hurting the tattoo business. Looks like this stay-at-home mom might be looking for work soon after many years of only working at home. That will be a big change! Wish me luck!

With my son back in school, i have more time to work in my studio, between laundry, cooking and cleaning house, ofcourse. i still make lots of cards, but have lately focused more on my lifelong passion for mixed media and collage. The blank book i got in February for art journaling is now about halfway to completion. Today i'm sharing a few snippets of it.

These pages were inspired by an issue of Somerset Studio (or maybe it was one of their other publications...?) that focused on black and white. It's not visible in the photo, but there's a lot of texture here, with embossing and paint. In the bottom photo, the top reads "art saves my life".

Thanks for stopping by, and i hope y'all have a wonderful day!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Spell Book

At my son's request, i made a spell book for his birthday this year (back in February). He loves to pretend he's a medieval sorcerer. i struggled over ideas for months, but then a few weeks before his birthday it all came together. He was very happy with it, even said it was the best gift he'd ever received (that was a serious heart-warmer!).

The above photo shows the book with 2 little boxes filled with dried leaves, 2 potion bottles filled with colored water (a name on one bottle comes from the video game "Oblivion") and a handmade pouch containing stones and "crystals". i also added a decorative pen, not shown.

i aged all the pages to give a very weathered and time-worn feel. Thank goodness for Ranger Distress Ink!

You can't tell from the photos, but every page had some kind of embossing or dimensional adhesive for texture.

i managed to make up one pretend spell!

i used clear envelopes to hold these pressed flowers and leaves.

In the pocket is a piece of aged paper for him to write/draw on.

As you can imagine, i used a ton of different supplies putting this together, so i'm going to opt out of listing them all here. If you have any questions, feel free to ask!

And even though i haven't been on here much for months, i still make some kind of art almost daily...almost. i've been working quite a bit in my art journal, so maybe next post will reflect that.

Hope everyone is well! And have a fantastic day!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Quick update...

Hi, everyone! i know it's been awhile, but i'm still here. We've had a lot going on, really since the beginning of this year. Too much to tell for now, but we've moved into a new home and P.'s working on opening a new shop. Amid all the chaos i've still been making art (only way to stay sane) and will have some new stuff to show soon.

i see i have a few new subscribers! Welcome! And thanks for signing up.
i hope everyone is doing well, and i look forward to catching up on everyone's blogs soon!

Happy day!

Friday, February 27, 2009

Rainy Friday...

Happy Friday everyone! i plan to spend tonight in my craft room; my son is going to Grandma's house for an overnight visit. This will give me a chance to work on my art journal in solitude.

So today i have one card to show. This card came together quickly (a rarity for me) and i was very pleased with the outcome.

Above is a close-up where you can see the shiny cardstock i used. i don't know what company makes this - my DC (darling companion) brought a loose stack of this home to me from work. i just love it!

Ingredients: CS - stash, Bazzill; PP - ?; stamps - Inkadinkado Gem Stone Birds, Hero Arts Friendship Messages; ink - Pallette Hybrid; felt flower - American Crafts; ribbon - Michael's; brads - MM; Prismacolor pencils and OMS; Stickles; button - stash; pop-dots.

Have a great day everyone! And enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

If it isn't going to snow...

...i'd rather it be Spring. So far this year we've had only a couple dustings and some flurries. Bah, i say! i know some of you reading have been bombarded by snow, but here we're really lacking.

The crummy weather hasn't hindered my creative spirit, though - i've been playing in my craft room a lot recently, not only making cards, but also working in my art journal. i hope to show some snippets from that soon, but for now it's mostly a work in progress. So more cards...

Trying out different color combos here. This card is much cutesier than what i normally do, but it was fun. And i love images of trees. i got this stamp set at Michael's for $6! Can't beat that!

Ingredients: CS - Colorbok, stash; PP - K & Company; stamps - Colorbok Friendly Forest, Studio G (letters); ink - Colorbox Chalk, Versamagic; ribbon - Offray, A.C. Moore; buttons - stash; brads - MM; pop-dots.

i love bird images, too...could you tell? And these colors are my comfort zone. i always wish people a double "Happy Birthday".

Ingredients: CS - stash, Bazzill; PP - We R Memory Keepers; stamps - Inkadinkado Gem Stone Birds, Studio G (border), PTI Paper Tray; ink - Versamark, Colorbox Chalk, Pallette Hybrid; ribbon - Bobbin Ribbon; chalk; white gel pen; pop-dots.

Thanks for stopping by! Hope you have a happy day!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

CPS 103

i decided to do a challenge - it's been awhile! This is CPS (Card Positioning Systems) #103.

Ingredients: CS - Kraft, Colorbok, stash; PP - K & Company; stamps - Martha Stewart Clear Pattern Stamps, Inkadinkado Maison Frames, Fancy Pants Simply Stated; ink - Versamagic, Colorbox Chalk; felt flower - American Crafts; button - stash; ribbon - Offray; brads - MM; pop-dots.

Thanks for looking!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Valentine's day...again...

i know, i know. But i promise this will probably be my last V. Day post. Two more:

Ingredients: CS - stash, PTI; PP - Best Occasions; stamps - Studio G, Autumn Leaves Freestyle Alphabet, PTI Paper Tray,Inkadinkado Sketchy Flourishes, Heidi Grace Dreamer; ink - Versafine, Pallette Hybrid, Ranger Nick Bantock Collection, Versamagic; Prismacolor pencils/OMS; brads - MM; ribbon - Offray; embossing powder - Stamependous.

And i'm sorry, but i love this card. And yes, i usually apologize before complimenting myself. Maybe i should stop doing that. In fact, i think we should make it a point to recognize our personal talents and take pride in those things we do well.
Ingredients: CS - stash; PP - MM, Karen Foster Design; stamps - Studio G, Martha Stweart Clear Pattern Stamps; ink - Versafine, Versamagic, Pallette Hybrid; ribbon - Offray; dimensional glaze.

So today i urge you to take pride in yourself and your skills, and to allow compliments from others, and yourself, to sink in. i challenge you to find 5 ways to compliment yourself today. i'll start!

1. i'm a really good cook.
2. i'm a thoughful person.
3. i can make beautiful art.
4. i'm a loyal friend.
5. i'm a good writer.

Now let's hear yours!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Valentine's Day, part 2

Valentine's Day is not super-important to me or my family. Honestly, i think it's a little silly - i mean, i love P. everyday of the year and strive to remind him of that on a regular basis. i even told him not to get me anything as i feel it's a waste of money. i mean, we just had Christmas! He did, however, say he was going to take me out for Thai food - my favorite! - as soon as we can get out together (he works so much lately...). The two holidays on which i do appreciate some recognition are Mother's Day and my birthday, but Valenine's Day is not a biggie.
Having said that, i found myself making a bunch of V. Day cards this year. i had a lot of fun with them, and i think because it was a bit out of my comfort zone, it lended a little challenge. You can expect to see a couple more of these in future posts!

This one's pretty basic. i like the folky, clean feel. And i just love kraft cardstock, i swear. i should buy it buy the hundreds.

Ingredients: CS- stash, Colorbok; PP - Karen Foster; stamps - Inkadinkado Sketchy Flourishes, Studio G; ink - Versafine, Colorbox, Ranger Nick Bantock Collection; button - stash; pop-dots.

Traditional colors on this one. IRL the heart stands out more; i need to work on my lighting! i make at least two of every card (mostly so i can keep a running stash of my work), and my son chose one of these to take to his "crush" at school. He actually took two different cards, because apparently he has a crush on a girl in his class as well as a girl in 5th grade - he's in 3rd grade. When he was 6, a friend asked him if he had a girlfriend, and without missing a beat, he said, "i have 6 girlfriends." One for each year of his life, i guess! The teenage years ought to be a hoot...ahem.

Ingredients: CS - stash; PP - Best Occasions, MM; stamps - Studio G, Image Tree, Autumn Leaves Swirls V:1; ink - Versafine, Pallette Hybrid, Versamagic; felt flower - American Crafts; brad - MM; pop-dots.

With envelope.
Thanks for stopping by! Hope you all have a wonderful day!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Gearing up for Valentine's Day...

With the holidays over (Happy Belated New Year, btw!), i've finally had some time to craft again, and i certainly needed the therapy. i normally don't make lots of Valentine's cards, but this year i've been turning out quite a few. Here are some snippets:

Ingredients: CS - PTI, Paper Reflections; PP- Best Occasions, MM; stamps - Studio G, Inkadinkado Sketchy Flourishes, Heidi Grace Dreamer, All Night Media Anna Griffin sentiments; ink - Versafine, Ranger; ribbon - Offray; brad - MM.
The card above and the one below are super-simple, but i like the non-traditional Valentine colors.
Ingredients: CS - Bazzill, stash; stamps - Martha Stewart Clear Pattern Stamps, MSE Lovely Floral; ink - Versamark, Ranger; chalk; Prismacolor pencils and OMS; dimensional glaze; pop-dots.

Ingredients: see above.

Thanks for looking!