"Art is my vehicle through life; may we share the ride together." Ron Wickersham

Sunday, May 31, 2009


I apologize for being absent almost a week. I spent a good part of last week getting ready for Cre8Joy's Open House - we showcased all our upcoming classes, had a make-n-take and served refreshments. It was very successful and we had lots of sign-ups.

One of my classes will be a vintage "suitcase" and travel/heritage book. This took alot of my time the past few weeks, but I can now share pictures. I designed this so that it could be used as a memento scrapbook of a special trip or used for treasured vintage photographs.

The "suitcase" box and book are from Maya Road and the book fits inside the box, even with all the embellishments. Here are pictures of the top of the box and a sideview. You can't make it out in the pictures, but the "luggage label" has a stamped transparency which says "destination unknown." The box has a frosted acrylic inset which I backed with some items and then collaged additional items on top. This gives added dimension.

This is the front cover of the book. The square is actually cut out from the cover with clear acrylic added. (The patterned paper that shows through is from the first page of the book.) Adhered to the top of the acrylic is a collage sandwiched inside a Tim Holts memory capsule frame.

Here are the inside pages. I used twill ribbon, stamped acetate, buttons, other ribbon, foreign coins, an old map page, tickets, copies of old postcards, postage stamps and various other ephemera to embellish.

I used Graphic 45's "Transatlantique" papers, another fab paper line from that company. This was super fun to do once I got into the groove. And, of course, I hope that many people will sign up!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy Memorial Day

I hope everyone enjoyed their holiday but took some time to appreciate and thank all the veterans and current servicemen and women for their sacrifices to ensure our freedom. I grew up in a small town in New England and the Memorial Day parade was one of the highlights of the year. Everyone turned out to either march in the parade or watch from the sidewalks. The parade went to the cemetary for a short ceremony. My most vivid memories are of all the little flags on the graves and the gun salute that was always presented.

I am participating in a patriotic 4" x 4" fatbook swap. I finished my pages a few days ago and thought it appropriate to post it today. The picture I used is of my father and I in about 1950. I must have gotten tired of walking and he picked me up and carried me the rest of the way. I was the firstborn and at the time of this picture my younger brother hadn't arrived. Look at how fancied up I was - I think I was my mom's little doll. I always had curls and bows - and did you notice my little coat and purse? (Click on the photo to enlarge.) She sewed all my clothes too.

For this page I swiped some cream paint on the lower left corner of the paper and stamped over it. The mini-beads were adhered on a strip of tape. The red star is a child's hair clip and the "ribbon" is a strip torn from an old pinstripe man's shirt. The flag I am holding in the picture didn't show up very well and was too small to color in, so I found a tiny flag on a calendar and made copies to add. This is one of my most favorite pictures of my dad and I and I'm glad it worked well for this project.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Baby gift and card

I went to a six-hour crop Friday night and was able to get a few projects finished. A good friend just had a new grandbaby so I wanted to send a little gift to new baby Clara. It's a wooden initial C which I painted and covered with paper. The baby shoes are a sticker. I stamped pink baby feet on a little white tag and added letter beads to spell her name - like the hospital bracelets that used to be put around babies' wrists. (I guess now they just put a cheesy paper band on!) Then I just added some tiny flowers, buttons and bows.

Here's the card. I used a chipboard dress form from Crafty Secrets as a pattern and traced it on cardstock. The coordinating pinafore is scored just below the waist to open for a handwritten greeting. The "lace" edging is strips of white paper punched with a Martha Stewart border punch.

Friday, May 22, 2009

More recycling

It's been a few days since my last post and I'm knee-deep in upcoming class projects. I'll be busy until next week's open house. So, I have no pictures of finished projects to share.

Here's another recycling idea (and not nearly as extreme as my last post!) which I can actually see doing. Check out this cute little shrug made with a t-shirt:


Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Recycling to the extreme?

Ok, I know I save scraps of everything, reuse lots of items and recycle paper, glass, aluminum, plastic etc. But, this is a little extreme! Check out this tutorial on how to make your own underwear from an old t-shirt - www.craftstylish.com/item/47762/how-to-make-your-own-underwear I don't know about all of you, but I'm not going to go there! That's what Target is for!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Art Quiltie arrives

I love getting art in the mail - maybe that's why I join so many swaps? The art quiltie from my partner, Barbara Hagerty, arrived today. I just love it! There are so many fun details. The wings are black German scrap that she brushed with something (?) to dull the finish. The faces are stamped and mica is adhered to the top. I like that the raw edges of the various fabrics are left to fray and the hand stitching is lovely. Our minds were thinking alike too, as she included a little wire hanger like I used for the one I sent off. Thank you so much Barbara. Be sure to check out her blog here.

Friday, May 15, 2009


What do you do with your scraps? Do you throw them away? Do you save them but never use them?

I am known for saving just about everything, but I do use my scraps. It helps that I tend to work small, making cards, ATCs, collages, etc. My friend Jaclyn, who also teaches classes with Cre8Joy Workshops, is a scrapbooker and doesn't save alot of her scraps. I give her a hard time about it and recently, after prepping kits for a layout class, she handed me all her little scrap pieces. I thought I would challenge myself to see what I could do with these bits and pieces. And here is the result - TEN cards from scraps! Any patterned pieces in the following cards were the scraps. Of course I had to add the card bases, stamps, inks, and assorted embellishments.

So here you go, Jaclyn! When I finished, I had two tiny bits that I did actually throw away!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Another Scrapstashers project

Tuesday was the monthly scrapstashers class again - how can the months go by so quickly? The project was another fantastic one. We had to bring an unfinished frame with glass, rubons, scraps of coordinating papers, paint and lots of buttons to coordinate. Since I am currently in love with the Graphic 45 Fashionista line and loving doing projects (for me!) with this paper, I took those papers.

This is what we made! Everyone's came out differently because of the papers and colors they chose, but I LOVE mine!

This was such an easy project, too. Once the frame was painted, the papers were cut into squares to fit the frame. The backing was removed from the frame and the glass glued into the back channel. The buttons were adhered with glue dots directly to the glass and the rubon added at the bottom. Sorry for the glare on the photo from the glass.

Here's a close-up of the rubon and some of the papers. This project makes me happy!

Monday, May 11, 2009

An "Art Quiltie"

What is an art quiltie? They are small fabric quilts, usually quite small, and are usually more often called fabric pages. They are sometimes more "mixed media" than traditional quilts and can mix fabrics, papers, paints, inks and just about anything else the artist wants to add.

I'm in a swap with an online group and we had to make one 6" x 6" quiltie. That was the only requirement - the theme, media and embellishments were all up to the maker. I finished mine last night and it did not come out at all like I had planned or envisioned!

I wanted to try a transfer on fabric but after a day of "playing" I had exactly one successful result to use. I took a flower photograph and transferred an inkjet copy of it to muslin using acrylic glaze medium. I taped down the muslin to a nonstick craft sheet and generously slathered a smooth application of the glaze medium on it. Then I coated the copy and laid it on top of the muslin, face down. I burnished this carefully and left it to dry for several hours. Once it was dry, I soaked it in warm water and then rolled off the paper backing with my fingers. This took some time, but eventually all paper bits were off.

The other technique I'd been wanting to try was making "paper fabric." I had seen this several times and there was a recent article in the May/June 09 issue of Cloth, Paper, Scissors. Again I taped a small piece of muslin to the nonstick craft sheet and thinned down regular white glue with some water. I tore bits of sewing pattern tissue, other patterned tissue paper, some book text pages, pieces of a floral napkin and just some random bits on my work table and glued these to the muslin with a generous amount of diluted glue. I also covered the finished patchwork with more glue. When this was dry, I sprayed it with an olive colored Glimmer Mist. Remarkably, this remained soft and pliable and resulted in a nice, sturdy and colorful fabric/paper.

To assemble the art quiltie, I machine-stitched the floral transfer to the paper fabric and then outlined the main flower with a running stitch and sewed on beads in the center. Then I sewed these pieces to the background cotton quilting fabric and a thin piece of cotton batting. After embellishing with ribbon tacked down with little pearl beads and the vintage flower stem and fabric "yo yos", I backed it with a pink cotton quilting fabric and zig-zag stitched around the perimeter. The little hanger is one I've had for awhile and just love for small projects such as this.

If you click on any of the pictures, they will enlarge and you can see the detail of the beads as well as the shimmer of the glimmer mist. I love the different textures on this.
Here's a close-up of the yo-yos. I recently received these as a RAK from an online friend and they worked perfectly with this color scheme! I sewed some little vintage buttons which look like pearls to the centers. Thank you Elaine!

The due date is May 16 and this went out in the mail today. Second swap I've been early for recently! This one's going to Brenda and I hope she likes it. I can't wait to see the one I receive!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day!

I hope all mothers have a wonderful day today! Here's a special image for you.

A mother's work is the most important job there is. Do you know how much the "mom job" is worth? According to salary.com, a stay-at-home-mom doing the most popular "mom" functions (janitor, van driver, housekeeper, laundress, CEO, psychologist, daycare center teacher, cook, computer operator and facilities manager) has an average workweek of 96 hours, no time off and no paid vacations. They figured the yearly salary to be worth $122,732.00!!! I'm not sure about you, but I haven't seen any paychecks! Oh, but the rewards are priceless!

Here's another Graphic 45 project I finished this weekend. It's a dollar store masonite plaque which I painted and covered with several of the Fashionista papers. The blue polka dot paper is pleated into a paper ruffle. I inked the chipboard letters and covered with Glossy Accents and added lace and Prima flowers. The flower on the right (see the closeup photo) was made with several layers of sewing pattern tissue cut into flower shapes (see a tutorial by Lisa Pace). I didn't have the Sizzix die she used so I just cut the shapes freehand. I also used a decorative brad in the center instead of a button. The leaf was made with two pieces of book text pages cut into a leaf shape and glued together. Then it was crumpled and inked and Stickled lightly. This will be going in my art room so I can enjoy these papers daily!

Again, Happy Mother's Day!!

Friday, May 8, 2009


Have you ever fallen in love...with paper? My current love affair is with the Fashionista line of Graphic 45 - what I would call vintage with a modern twist. Every paper in this line (actually in every line of this company) is absolutely gorgeous. So gorgeous that I am having a very hard time cutting into it. And when I do cut a piece, I buy another whole piece to replace it! I decided that I needed to make some special projects - for myself - so I will be able to savor this paper forever.

One of our current classes at Cre8Joy Workshops is this beautiful "Timeless" canvas. I decided to make this to showcase some of the papers along with the embossed art metal (the black backgrounds which are done with the Cuttlebug and the roses which are done with the new Ten Seconds Studio Kabuka molds).

I'm making another project with these papers so check back in a few days for the finished piece.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Mother's Day project and a RAK

I received this great RAK (random act of kindness) in the mail today from an online friend. I host a monthly Inspiration Swap on our Yahoo group and she sent this as a thank you. The inspiration last month was a sage green and orangey colored bedspread and this is what she made. It's hard to see the earrings but they are very soft colored beads on silver wires. I love them! And aren't the fabric yo yos cute?!

What do you get for mothers who have everything? Pictures of her family, of course! I saw this new bradmaker by Chatterbox at the CHA trade show in January and finally got my hands on a package. The set comes with three different sizes of brads, the little plastic dome covers, adhesive circles and three appropriate size punches. You can also get refills of just the brads and covers.

This is a great kit as you can match your brads to your papers for cards or layouts. Or, you can add photos as I have done. I saw a sample like this at CHA and just had to make one for my mother. (Hope she's not reading this!) The hardest part of this project was getting photos resized to fit the brads! I found the frame on sale at Walmart of all places, removed the glass and mat, and used a piece of neutral linen for the backing. Sorry for the glare on the pictures.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


I've been trying to get this project finished for awhile now as it was meant to be my spring door arrangement and spring is almost over! I'm thinking it will do fine all summer too.

I used a large tin can which I emptied, cleaned and spray-painted white. I then "squished" it together and Modpodged papers from the Perfect Harmony line from Daisy Bucket. The pink strip has white rickrack glued on with wire threaded through several buttons. I used the crop-a-dile (love that tool!) to punch holes in the sides and used two pieces of wire for hanging the bucket. I added grungeboard butterflies (painted with Tim Holtz crackle paint) and buttons to the hanger. Here's the finished project hanging on my front door to welcome one and all.

Remember, you can click on any picture for a close-up.

Two projects

The 12-hour National Scrapbook Day crop was a huge success. I didn't finish all the projects I took as I worked part of the time, but I still got alot accomplished.

Do you remember the old autograph books we used to take to camp or to school for our friends to sign? (If not, you're alot younger than me! LOL) I will be attending a retreat for an online group in a month and the theme of the weekend is girlfriends. We have to bring decorated "autograph book pages" - one for each participant - and they will be bound into autograph books which we will then take around to everyone to have them sign their page. We are supposed to put an old autograph saying on the front along with our artwork.

I completed 18 of these pages at the crop. There are currently 16 people attending, but I made a couple for extras just in case someone signs up at the last minute.

I used the new Heidi Swapp Invisibles paper in the polka dot pattern which I inked with Tattered Rose distress ink. I don't remember where the image of the five little girls is from but I had saved it on my computer. I printed it out, colored with colored pencils and Gamsol and attached it to the page with black photo corners. The title "girlfriends" was stamped in black ink and I attached three flowers (from the bridal section of Michael's) with a gem in each flower center. The saying was printed on the computer and overstamped with an Autumn Leaves journaling block. After cutting it into a small square, I punched the top with a new EK Success notebook border punch. I wanted this to look like a piece of school paper torn out of a notebook. The left side is left free of embellishments so that these can be bound with the Bind-It-All.

This is a small 4" by 4" canvas I made for a dear friend for her birthday. It's similar to one I saw on the Hero Arts blog. It's all shades of white. The background was crackled with Elmer's Glue (paint on a generous coat of glue to the canvas and, while the glue is still wet, paint over all with white acrylic paint - when everything dries, it is crackled). I added a book page and stamped some flourishes with white paint. The horizontal strip at the bottom is a piece of cream cardstock run through the crimper and then dry-brushed with white paint. A thin piece of twine was threaded through white buttons and clear buttons (with book text glued to the backs) and tied in a bow. I added a bow of tan silk ribbon, a white leaf inked with brown ink, and a butterfly punched from my new MS punch. There are three flowers layered together - a white flower on the bottom, a cream paper flower on the top. Sandwiched between is a flower I made by stamping a script stamp with white ink on kraft cardstock and then cutting into a flower shape and edging with white ink. Little self-adhesive pearls are sprinkled over the canvas and the sentiment was stamped with brown ink.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Vintage images

I haven't been creating much these past few days. To celebrate National Scrapbook Day (Saturday - tomorrow) Create Joy Workshops is hosting a 12-hour crop, so I helped prep the 87 very cute make-n-takes all day Wednesday. Yesterday I taught a class and today I am trying to gather all the projects and assorted supplies to work on all day tomorrow. With 12 hours of uninterrupted creating time, I want to finish alot of projects!
So, today there's no art to share, but early next week I should have several things to show you. In the meantime, here's some vintage images for you to use in your projects if you wish.