Thursday, August 28, 2008

A child’s puzzling uniqueness

So I am killing three birds with this ATC.

Alpha Stamps Yahoo group does a bi-monthly Lot-o-rama with ATC's. The person who wins the ATC the previous time gets to select a theme and this time it is "Unique" I had a very hard time with that b/c I just couldn't think of what made something Unique.

here is what I came up with.

1. Handwriting, each person's handwriting is different. So on the base of the ATC there is handwritten script, I know it is hard to see but I promise, it is there.

2. Puzzle pieces are each cut in a unique way, I am sure that there are tons that are the same but to me they each look different. Over at This Thursday, they have asked us to use Puzzle pieces in are work. So this worked perfectly for me.

3. No one is more unique to me right now than my little girl. But I imagine that all mother's feel that way so children overall have to be the most unique of individuals out there. They have not been molded by society yet and are free to be themselves. One Powerful Hour asked us to use children and things that remind us of childhood in our art this week.

4. And lastly I thought of sand. For some reason I can hear in my mind a saying that goes something like this "each grain of sand is unique" I could be totally wrong but hey it works. But instead of using sand I decided to use Glitter...after all they seem the same to me...both grainy but glitter is just such a happier color.

The background papers that I covered the puzzle pieces with are cut out of a brown paper bag that I had layed some fabric strips on to dry after dying them. There is no way I would ever obtain that pattern again so they are unique. And the background that everything is built on was made using Tim Holtz distressing inks. I am sure no matter how hard I tried I could never perfectly reproduce that either.

So in my extremely long winded explanation...everything on this ATC in my opinion is "Unique"

I hope you enjoy!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Art Nouveau/alcohol ad Cocktail Napkins

Today is an especially gloomy one. It has been raining here for I think four or five days straight. The only good thing (not that I don't like is just starting to get to be too much) is that I have gotten a lot of tedious crafting jobs done. I have been working on these cocktail napkins for what seems like forever. Don't know why it took me so long to finish them but i finally did. The fabric is hand died using an Ecru and then highlighted with salmon. All the stamped images were stamped in a warm brown and are from Natures Blessings. The Fabric Collage images are from Alpha Stamps, the are from the Wine Labels Fabric Collage sheet. The final touch is the seed beads that are a rich brown that really brings out the warm color of the stamped images and helps to bring out some of the iridescent shimmer in the napkins. These are currently one sale in my Etsy store. Hope you enjoy looking at them as much as I enjoyed making them...below are some more detailed shots.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Design Team Pieces

Well, I finally finished two more pieces for Repeat Impressions. I had another one up my sleeve but no matter what I did I could not get it to work out...sometimes art just does not cooperate :)

The "I Must Be Queen" piece is a square card, I have a set of 6 on sale in my etsy shop. I started by stamping Etta with dark brown ink on a tan sheet of cardstock. Then in a lighter shade I stamped the crown and added some more depth by stippling gold using a circular (beehive) stencil.

This is mounted an a green sheet of cardstock that I stamped random splotches all over in the dark brown ink.

I mounted both layers onto a pink cardstock sheet. I also used this pink to stamp the phrase "I must be queen..." on and cut out to mount on the first panel.

For this piece I used one of the Gothic Arch templates provided on the Gothic Arch challenge page. Please see my sidebar for the address.

I stamped the goddess on a separate sheet of cardstock and colored her with colored pencils. I then cut her out and attached a set of wings from a collage sheet.

To make the trellis I cut another Gothic arch and stamped the flowering vine all along the edge. I then went in and cut out the center trimming closely to the flowers. I colored them with colored pencils.

All of this is mounted onto a background sheet that has similar shades of flowers all over it.

Hope you enjoy my pieces, I had a great time making them.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Eat Your Veggie's

Over at This Thursday the challenge is to:

The challenge this week is Blings the thing so we want to see loads of shine, sparkle, glitter and glimmer with some added pow and pizzazz. Or as usual you can interpret the title however it inspires you.

I had a Journal for COF to work on. And as most of you know I can't to anything without "Bling" so I decided to use my tag from Elisabeth's fabulous Round Robin Journal for the challenge.

Elisabeth's journal is all about "Mother's sayings" phrases you heard over and over as a child. I selected the tried and true phrase "Eat your Vegetables"

A lot of the Bling can't be usual. There is some pearl ex powder mixed all over the tag. I used silver pearl ex powder in an attempt to highlight the silver tray of veggies my "mom" is carrying. The words "Eat Your Vegetables" are surrounded with a silver paint pen that is really really shimmery. My "Moms" dress is painted with sparkeling H2O's and last but definitely not least the entire tag has been edged with bright orange glitter to match the carrots in the ribbon.

There are two charms hanging off of the ribbon, both silver, one is a corn cob and the other a pepper.

Hope you enjoy my homage to Elisabeth's tag journal and to This Thursday's challenge. I had a great time making my shimmery piece.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


I have been sitting on this post waiting for the recipient to let me know she received it. This is my first ever canvas and I made it for a swap the theme being Friendship.

I really wanted to take everything I have learned from the group that I swapped with and use it on this piece. So to start with I covered the canvas in Gesso. Once that dried I added some sticky letters spelling "Friends" across and down the canvas. Then I painted over the canvas with some shimmery paint, since we all know I can't do anything that doesn't have some shimmer. To add texture to the paint I mixed in some Gesso and I stippled it on giving it a bit of a ruff surface. You can see this better in some of the close up pictures further down.

Once the initial layer of shimmery paint was dry I dry brushed on some gold shimmery paint concentrating on the edges of the canvas which I still think are a bit bare but that is the custom framer in me. I would have framed the canvas if I had had time.

With all the paint said and done I moved onto the centerpiece. The stamp I used is now discontinued which is really sad because I just love love love it. So I stamped the image three times, once on white card stock and once each on the different decorative papers. I colored the white image and cut the dresses out of the decorative paper and "dressed" the woman images.

I mounted them on a foam cut. I traced the medallion like shape onto the foam and then cut it out and painted it with the same shimmery paints used on the canvas. The color looks different because I did not add any gesso to it. When that was dry I gold embossed the swirls. The embossing isn't really raised I think it is because the foam absorbed the embossing. It also bubbled a bit but I liked the over all effect.

I set the "friends" aside and tackled what I saw as a bare canvas. This is as far as my imagination had taken the canvas but I was not happy with all the open space. So I pulled down my dictionary and a sharpie and decided to write the definition of Friends done the left hand side. I must admit that if I had not joined Sarah on the Soul Journal experience I would have never had the courage to write on the canvas and that would have been a shame. The definition adds a lot, even though my handwriting lacks the romance of a stamped sentiment.

The woman that I sent my canvas to uses lots and lots of beads, which I absolutely love. I think it adds so much texture, depth and interest to her work. So I decided to take a note from her work and attached the ribbon with the fabulous bead work. Then I mounted my center piece. I still thought it was missing something so I went digging into my long forgotten embellishment box and found the wonderful round stickers. I painted them with the same paint and stamped Friends, individual letters, on each one. Then I placed them around the woman image until I liked their placement.

When all is said and done I really really liked the outcome and i hope that the recipient done too! I had a great time making this for my friend and I learned a lot.

I hope you enjoy looking at it as much as I enjoyed making it.

Monday, August 18, 2008

4 and 20 Blackbirds

For the past few days I have been tossing ideas around for the One Powerful Hour challenge of "Feathered Friends" It wasn't until I surfed over to Mixed Media Monday that inspiration hit me.

Mixed Media Monday wanted us to use numbers in our pieces this week. When i saw that i was instantly reminded of a childhood nursery rhyme "Sing a Song of Sixpence" so here is my interpretation of the two themes, numbers and feathered friends mixed together with a dash of nursery rhyme mixed in.

Sing a song of sixpence lyrics
(Four and twenty blackbirds baked in a pie)
Sing a song of sixpence a pocket full of rye,
Four and twenty blackbirds baked in a pie.
When the pie was opened the birds began to sing,
Oh wasn't that a dainty dish to set before the king?
The king was in his counting house counting out his money,
The queen was in the parlour eating bread and honey
The maid was in the garden hanging out the clothes,
When down came a blackbird and pecked off her nose!

Hope you enjoy!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Cocktail Napkins

Here is another set of cocktail napkins that I have made using Alpha Stamps Fabric collge sheets.

This set was made using the old fabric collage sheets, the ones that have been replaced with non fading fabric. You can see in the second picture how the images faded.

Go HERE to see the original coloration. You will need to scroll down the page till you find "Cinderella and the Birds"

I decided to do these using the old fabric collage sheets so that I could see how much better the new ones are and boy are they fabulous.

If you go HERE it will take you to a set of cocktail napkins (different design) that I have made using the new fabric collage images. The detail in those is absolutely fenominal for something so small and washable.

To make these I died the fabric two colors of lumious ink so they are very very shimmery. The trim is a soft yellow that I stamped in swirls using the darker of the luminous paints. However the shimmer did not transfer I think the stamp was to detailed (swirls to thin) to get enough shimmery paint on. Once everything was put together I heat set the images and then sewed them on.

Monday, August 11, 2008

All I Ask Wall hanging

I love to read and every now and then I get so wrapped up in a book that I can't put it down to eat, drink or sleep. sometimes, to the books detriment, that means that i spill stuff all over the pages. But to me this does not render the book tossable, it turns it into the perfect art project. Here I have used 3 pages out of one of the many books that has fallen victim to my unsteady hands...

I died three pages various shades, one blue, one green and one pink using Tim Holtz distressing inks. While these were drying I worked on the center tag.

I cut the tag shape using a Colluzle (sp?) and then stamped it with 3404-C, Random Dots using the pink ink I dyed the paper with. I also brushed this ink along the edges of the tag. I did the same to the portion of paper hanging from the tag. Next I gold embossed 7118-I, Queen and colored her with marker. Finally I punched three openings in the tag, one at the top to loop the ribbon through and two at the bottom that I put blue eyelets in so i could hang the saying 7015-G, All I Ask using blue DMC shimmery thread.

Now I layer everything. I placed the tag on the green died book page. Then I cut a strip of toile and sandwiched it between the green and pink book pages. I mounted all this on the blue book page. To finish it all off I added various colored rhinestones.

I hope you enjoy!

Mirror Mirror on the Wall...

Here is another piece for Repeat Impressions.

The castle shape that I have been working with for a few months was created by Sarah W. for an Alpha Stamps Castle Swap. You can see other pieces that I created and received

For this castle I started by cutting out the castle shape and coloring various shades for pinks and purples using water color pencils. I then painted over the color with a very thin layer of Gesso, this mixed the water color pencils together nicely giving the background a very soft smooth look. Next I stamped 7116-E, Crown using royal purple and black inks.

The 7118-I, Queen is stamped on transparency film with a permanent ink and then painted with alcohol inks. I did not cut the transparency film closely since you can not see the film and the added left overs gave the images more stability. I used a very small amount of double sided tape to attach them to the castle.

For the Mirror I used 6804-L, Hand Mirror and cut off the handle. I stamped the phrase 7020-E, Compliments on a separate piece of cardstock and trimmed closely, so that it would fit inside the makeshift mirror.

Lastly I stamped 4314-K, Flowering Vine on a separate sheet of cardstock, colored it with the same colors I used for the background on the castle, cut them out and mounted them on the castle as shown. And edged the castle with black ink.

Hope you enjoy!

Goddess in Training Slide Mailer

For those of you who have not heard the news, I am a member of Repeat Impressions Design Team. I am so honored to be able to design for this company. I met the owners a number of years ago at a Convention in Georgia. And they are a delightful couple. The company is small and based in Maine but you would never know it from the fabulous quality of their items. Please take a moment to check them out.

Okay onto what I have created. The first piece that I have made is a slide mailer. I started by coating the mailer with a thin layer of gesso. Next I sprayed it with a green Glimmer mist and Walnut ink. Let that dry (but not all the way) and then sponged off the excess with a paper towel.

On the front I stamped 4314-K, Flowering Vine colored it with markers and then added diamond glaze. Lastly I gold embossed around the edges.

On the inside Left side I started by stamping 3417-C, Random Stars with Jungle green ink and then stamped the phrase 7032-D, Goddess in dark brown ink. To finish it off I cut out a few of the flowers from the flowering vine and added them.

To create the insert for the right hand inside panel I first traced the shape on a cardboard colored cardstock and then stamped 7107-G, Goddess Post two times, one right side up and the other upside down, masking as needed, with brown ink. I colored the image with colored pencils and mounted inside the insert.

To finish off the inside I added gold embossing powder all around the edges. And lastly I attached the beads to the back of the slide mailer.