Monday, October 24, 2016

Hello, Autumn!

Here in New Jersey where I live, we've been having the loveliest fall weather imaginable. The days are sunny and free of summer's humidity, the nights are cool and crisp, and the leaves are just starting to change color. It's such a beautiful time of year, I thought I'd try to capture it in card form using some of my favorite Eyelet Outlet goodies:

I had a lot of fun playing with these pretty floral layering stamps when the lovely Miss June was here, and I really like how they look on a background of vintage text paper. But of course I always want my cards to have texture as well, so I added Stitched Flower Brads, Stitched Flower Mini Brads and Leaf Brads in similar shades to give my collage some dimension. 

A little strip of Glitter Gold Washi makes my diecut sentiment pop. And who can resist a few beautiful orange Butterfly Brads and Mini Butterfly Brads? (Not me, lol!) A little bit of machine stitching is a great finishing touch, and this card is ready to be mailed!

What's your favorite thing about autumn... and how could you use it to inspire your next creation?

Saturday, October 22, 2016

miscellaneous crafty stuff

aka a round-up of some things i've worked on recently that didn't really fit into any other post. because yeah...that's how scientific my "process" is, lol!

as far as i can tell, burnt umber color burst was designed especially so that would-be mehndi artists like myself could practice our henna tattoo skills in our sketchbooks. right??

this yarn is called "treasure" and seems to be living up to its name.

not to be conceited, but when the olympic committee FINALLY recognizes gift wrapping as a sport, i'm pretty confident i can bring home the silver for team usa!

last week's #sisters with heart in art prompt was TRANSPARENCY. i used distress crayons and gelatos to draw some super-loose flowers on top of a vintage paper collage; then covered it with wrinkly deli paper. the results were more "interesting" than "good" imo, but i had a lot of fun essperimenting with this, which in a lot of ways i enjoy more, anyhow...

i found out via social media wednesday night that am definitely not the only adult who still watches "it's the great pumpkin charlie brown" every year. i may be the only one who has decided henceforth to always doodle all over a colorbust-painted pumpkin while it's on, though...

hope your weekend will be full of good weather, virtuously accomplished chores, some crafty "me time" and maybe even a tasty treat or two! ♥♥♥ 

Friday, October 21, 2016

while shepherds watch their flocks...

we're celebrating animals at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ this fortnight, so bring on your reindeer, your moose, your cardinals, your penguins, your narwhals, your yeti, your monstas... well, i think you get the theme now, right? and you've probably sussed that we're defining "animals" pretty loosely, in fact you could swap in the word "creature" and still be good to go. i know this will SHOCK everyone who knows me well, but i did not make a christmas monsta card this week!!! i've actually got a perfectly normal, perfectly adorable reindeer! (don't worry, i'll whip up something EXTRA weird for ya next week, lol!)

merry christmas washi tape, skinny hearts washi, stockings tape, santa tape, red tree tape, antler and heart brads: eyelet outlet; patterned paper: authentique + a bit of vintage sheet music; ink: colorbox; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape

i'm still pretty smitten by the adorable doodlebug reindeer stickers, and i still had a set of eyelet outlet antler brads, and the pairing is apparently quite irresistible to me at the moment, so i just went with it. i've used my "washi tape letters" trick again, too; because it's such an easy way to make 100% custom sentiments for my projects. and i may have just happened to get my hands on a few new UBER-cuuuuute tapes i couldn't wait to use, lol. this time i traced some rather elderly heidi swapp acrylic letters (i really like this font!) onto scraps of cardstock covered with neat strips of eyelet outlet washi tape, like this:

and yes, the one drawback of this technique is that you need to do a bit of hand-cutting, but i don't really mind that. if you loathe that sort of thing, though, you can use alphabet dies. another fun trick to fancy-up your titles is to either swap out the letter O for something else that's round-- (a snowflake, a flower, a snowglobe) --or use it as a frame for... ohhhhhh i dunno... a very sweet reindeer, maybe??!

i've used this week's layout from retro sketches:

the delightful miss stephanie also has a fabulous card to show you, why not hop over to ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ right now and enjoy that?!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

hey, ghoulfriend!

we're getting our halloween on at shopping our stash this week and we hope you'll join us for some papercrafty tricks and treats!

ancient (12++ year old) foam mounted PSX bat stamped with ranger archival ink and colored with gelly roll pens; trick or treaters from a vintage children's book; journal card and trick or treat sign from a basic grey embellishment pack; patterned papers: basic grey; black glitter paper: doodlebug; adhesives: sookwang tape, 3m foam tape, sewing machine

i've mentioned before that i don't have a lot of halloween stash (i'm not sure why? i like halloween!) so it's always a bit of a scramble to pull something together. gina gave me a cool basic grey embellishment pack for my birthday though, and i have some falling-apart vintage kids books from which i found the adorable trick-or-treaters illustration.

my *ONE* halloween stamp is this ancient foam mounted bat, that i think came from one of the very first PSX sets i bought, when there was a rubber stamp store i used to absolutely love, near my mom's house. that place has been closed for at least ten years (maybe longer?) so the stamp has to be 12+ years old. and to answer your question, no, i have no idea what happened to the rest of the set, or why i hung on to just the bat, except he's really cute and still pretty useful, lol, so there's that. i mention all of this because the current retro rubber challenge is also halloween based, and i'm jumping in with them.


there's lots more scary-good halloween inspo from my ghoulfriends at SOS... hop, fly, waft or otherwise materialize yourself over there to check it out! ♥

Monday, October 17, 2016

mandala monday

an extra special card today, made for my lovely friend becca cruger... aka the damsel of distressed... who is the hostess of a really wonderful online event taking place online for the next two weeks called the hop to stop, papercrafters raising awareness for the victims of domestic violence. miss becca writes about the event and the inspiration much more eloquently than i possibly could, so i suggest you click the link and check out all of the details, but hang on here and see my card first, k?

one of the rules of the hop is that your card needs to be significantly purple, the color of domestic violence awareness. (another is that you need to comment on at least the 3 cards before yours in the link up! be sure to read the rules you guys, apart from being respectful, it will make you eligible for many cool prizes!!!) since i have violet, orchid and indigo color burst, this was not a problem. i sprinkled all three colors randomly over a wet sheet of watercolor paper, swirled them around a bit and let them dry. then i came back with a white gelly roll pen and drew a bit of a mandala on top. this particular design was inspired by this gorgeous artwork by @tanjalouiseartist that my niece maddie sent me a link to on instagram. then i added a couple of mats and called it good.

i hope you will check out becca's post right here for all of the details, and to see her gorgeous artwork and just generally say HI to that lovely lady. then start planning your own purple masterpiece! ♥♥♥

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Bon Voyage, Dans Mes Reves...

It's my day on the Eyelet Outlet Blog, where I'm daydreaming about Paris. Because... por quoi pas?! ♥

vintage text paper, red glossy title page and a bit of map from an old atlas; cardstock: coredinations; eiffel tower, red pearl strip and heart brad: eyelet outlet; tapes: glitter copper, wide travel washi, heart tape, gold script tape, skinny hearts washi: eyelet outlet; ink: ranger archival and colorbox chalk ink; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, scotch gluestick, 3m foam tape, sewing machine

I used a couple of pages from a vintage atlas for my background and my butterfly. The sparkly letters are diecut from a few strips of Eyelet Outlet glitter copper washi tape stuck to scrap cardstock. The bigger letters are hand cut, just because I've yet to see oversized alphabet dies I love as much as Basic Grey's ancient chipboard "mini monograms". So until that happens, here's how I make a big chunky title:

I neatly lined up a few strips of different Eyelet Outlet washi tapes on a piece of white cardstock, making sure that all of my letters would fit. Then I traced around the characters with a Sharpie, taking care to place each letter at about the same level, so the patterns would line up horizontally. I also tried to make sure I was getting "a good part" of the pattern on each letter, so you can see I've left quite a bit more space than I would've if using patterned paper or only one tape. Then I removed the centers of the b and o with a craft knife, and trimmed the rest with scissors. Easy, peasy... if admittedly a tiny bit tedious. Worth it, though, I think, so I celebrated with some machine stitched swirls!

I'm joining in with this week's theme on the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge Blog, which is "Explore the World". Be sure to check out the DT and readers' gallery, as there are some seriously breath-taking projects on display! And be sure to check out The Eyelet Outlet blog, where my fellow design team mates are rockin' it every single day! ♥♥♥

Saturday, October 15, 2016

sketchbook... saturday!

at the risk of sounding like a tech idiot, here's something i only just learned, which i'm sure EVERYONE with an i-phone has already been doing for months and years: if you turn on i-cloud photo sharing, you can see all the pics you've taken with your phone... instantly... on ANY device! yes, as i say, i'm pretty sure i'm the only one in the world who was still emailing herself photos, but it's made such a difference to my posting routine that i just had to mention it, on the off chance it would similarly help someone else, lol. as you may have guessed, this is part of the reason that i've been keeping up with my "miscellaneous" art posts so much better. because it's soooooooo EASY now!!! :) so here are a few things i've watercolored with color burst pigment powders recently:

for the #sisters with heart in art instagram group. i found a spiral bound watercolor tablet that i think i bought for a class a couple of years ago, and i've been loving to use wet media in that rather than my ordinary sketchbook... the paper doesn't warp, or soak through, it's really quite heavenly!

also made for SWHIA, using the new "rich moroccan" shades of color burst, which i absolutely adore: cerulean blue, cadmium scarlet, olive green, burnt umber, and possibly my favorite: gamboge!

for @fox and hazel's "31 days of watercolour" challenge on instagram

another prompt from 31 days of watercolour
(you'll have noticed that when i don't know what to paint --or draw-- i make patterns; this is one of my strategies for getting going on later nights when i still have enough energy to do *SOMETHING* but i'm too tired to decide WHAT...) 

"moroccan tiles"
made just for fun, and to practice my shading  

"yellow poppies"
because i hadn't done a floral in ages... and gamboge is my new favorite color!!!!!!!!

our plans for the day include distributing A LOT of mulch, exchanging a pair of shutters at home depot, and getting takeaway from a semi-local church's annual "oyster pork supper"... the latter being one of the highlights of our culinary year. what's on your agenda?