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

Saturday, August 31, 2013

What are you doing this Labor Day weekend?

I am baking - Cuttlebug plates! Yes, you heard that right. I had seen on Pinterest that someone "cooked" their warped plates and they became as flat as new again! So I decided to try it on the LBH plates that were horrible.

Here's the before (please excuse the bad photography but this was nearly impossible to do with one hand holding the plate and one holding the camera):

And the after! Pretty dramatic!

The original poster did a great post on her procedure, which I followed exactly, so I won't redo it. Just check her post out here if you are interested.

I am so excited that I will now do my own plates as well. I'm sure the LBH customers will appreciate the flatter plates...

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Mixed Media Mania Class - Altered Cigar Box

We had a great response for my Mixed Media Mania class on Tuesday.  And, because it was also the first day of school, many were not able to attend so we have added another date for two more classes next Tuesday, Sept. 3, 10 am - 1 pm or 6 pm to 9 pm.  You may call the LBH at 817-431-7930 to reserve a spot.

I wanted to share some of the results of the students. I forgot to start taking photos until after a few had left, so this is just a small sampling of the gorgeous boxes everyone made.

Debbie's - before the final highlight coat of white

Ellen's - before the beautiful dark green and blue sprays

Hilary's finished box

Karen's - for some reason I was unable to crop or edit this photo but the true colors of her finished box were beautiful soft greens and blues

Lynette's finished box

Susan's finished box - love the wings!
This class was a blast! Please join me next week if you can!

Friday, August 23, 2013

On our way to Kansas City

I'm leaving for Kansas City today to visit sister-in-law, brother-in-law and mother-in-law for the weekend, so there will be no arting for a few days!  The good thing is, Kelly, Josh and Carl will be going too. I LOVE getting to spend time with this little guy!

See you next week!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

"Love You" Minibook and a Short Tutorial

Here is the final project I created from the "Game On" Front Porch Kit.  It's a minibook, the base of which is made from just one piece of pattern paper. A few folds and two small cuts and you have a darling little book that can hold a surprising amount of photos. Of course, I added lots of scraps and snippets of other papers, buttons, and ribbons to embellish.  

Front cover using alpha stickers and metal foil tape (see instructions later in post)

First and second pages - page on right lifts up to reveal two photo mats as seen below

Using a decorative photo corner punch adds so much to the design

Page three which is actually a pocket revealing a tabbed double-sided photo mat inside - love those polaroid frames which were on a paper included in the kit

Back page is a tiny pocket holding another polaroid frame and a card

Overall view

I thought I would share step-by-step photos of how I made the title block for the front cover.  I first cut a scrap of the cardstock the desired size (any color would do as it will be totally covered, but I happened to have red on my workspace so that's what got used!).  Then I added the alpha stickers that were included in the kit - you can see that the "v" tore as I took it off the sheet but it won't show when we're done.

Next I covered the entire piece with the foil tape with extra to fold over the edges. 
 This is already sticky on the back which makes it super easy to use.  I rubbed over the entire piece with my fingers to reveal the letters.

Then I burnished well with a paper stump, defining the letters even more and smoothing the background.

In this closeup you can see the pattern of the cardstock in the background.

After folding over the edges, I swiped the piece with black Distress Paint (this acrylic paint works well on non-porous surfaces). It collects in the crevices around the letters and makes them pop.

The final step was to wipe off the excess paint, especially on the tops of the letters. 
And voila, the title is ready to be mounted on the front of the minibook.  (Excuse the red "E" - must be a reflection of something as it really isn't red!)

Hope you enjoyed this brief tutorial on how to get extra mileage from ordinary sticker letters. This would be a great way to use up those colors you don't like or use!

If you haven't ordered a "Game On" kit, there are just a few left!  

To get yours, call or stop by the LBH: 
118 W. Olive St.
Keller, TX 76248

Monday, August 19, 2013

Another "Game On" Project

This is the project I created with "Chip" the mini-clipboard included in the Front Porch Kit.  I was hard  to cover the cute kraft-with-white-polka-dot background Chip came with, but I ended up using two of the bright patterned papers.  I'm going to use this as a "Goal List" and, because I used the chalkboard tape for the little banners, I can change goals as needed!  The colorful filmstrip embellishments were perfect for numbering the list. The #4 didn't quite match the color scheme so I "painted" it lightly with red ink.

I used the foil tape included in the kit to cover Chip's clip.  First I embossed it with a harlequin folder to match the argyle paper, then painted it black with Distress Paint (which works really well for covering non-porous surfaces) and sanded it down slightly.  The tape is great for conforming to curves and irregular shapes. "Focus" was cut out of a larger journaling card and popped up on the clip.

This was a fun project! I hope it will help me focus on my goals - #1 and #3 will be easy, #2 and #4 not so much!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

What I've Been Doing All Week

Babysitting these two precious littles!

We picked Drew up in Albuquerque and flew home with him on Monday. Carl's dad drove him up from Austin so he could be with his cousin all week.  So we had both boys from Monday until Friday when they went home. 

They had such fun together, learning little tricks from each other. Drew conquered going up the stairs and Carl managed to learn to share his toys!

I'm missing them so much, but it''s also nice to have a bit of down time again - they are on different nap schedules so it was pretty much nonstop all week!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

New Monthly Class - "Mixed Media Mania"

What is Mixed Media? 

Very simply it means a work of art created with more than one medium. There are no rules and just about anything goes! Want to learn more? Come join me for our very first “Mixed Media Mania” class at the LBH. These new monthly classes will focus on the wide world of mixed media techniques and projects.

Mixed Media Mania
Tuesday, Aug. 27
10am-1pm or 6pm-9pm
Cost: $45

In August we will be playing with gesso, Dylusions ink sprays, stencils, modeling paste and a variety of “stuff” to create an altered cigar box. Each box will be unique, depending on the many different choices you will make. Below you will see some peeks of the box I created.

Wooden cigar boxes and most supplies will be furnished but I suggest you raid your garage, junk drawer, sewing supplies and craft rooms for odd bits to add to your box. (Some ideas: washers, nuts, bolts, screws, springs, sewing bobbins, zipper pieces, buttons, keys, old jewelry bits, charms, game pieces, flowers - especially colors you won’t ever use., etc.)

Supplies to bring:
non-stick craft mat
heat tool
Small bristle brush (not foam)
Fast-tack, clear-drying tacky glue
Small palette knife if you have one
2 favorite colors of spray ink (if you have)
“Junque” pieces as noted above

Please stop by the LBH to see the class sample and sign up for this fun Mixed Media Collage class. You may also call to reserve your seat!
(817) 431-7930

I look forward to creating together!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

"Game On" FPK Layouts

I created a double layout and a single layout for the Front Porch Kit.

"Games Babies Play"

We had recently returned from a trip to Albuquerque to visit with both grandbabies and the Game On theme seemed to fit perfectly with many of the photos I had taken there. I used the chalk tape to title each photo and die cut the corrugated aqua paper for the main title. I also added one of the buttons included in the kit for the end of the title (play), using the word "play" cut from the barcode strip of one of the papers glued on the top of the button.

I loved the viewfinder and slipcase and used it for journaling.

"Mexican Train Marathon"

Our family loves to play Mexican Train Dominoes. When we went to Mexico for Christmas several years ago, it took us all week to finish one game! The domino paper in the kit was perfect for a background for this layout. I painted a portion of it to highlight the photos.

I used the Polaroid frame with the chalkboard paper to document this fun family event.

The corrugated paper arrows were hand cut, the curved one on top highlighting the photo of our actual scorecard from that game. I used the 9 of hearts card to signify the nine of us.

The little transparency worked nicely for the date and the clock piece and black poker chip were perfect embellishments.

The "Game On" Front Porch Kit is now available at:

The Little Blue House
118 W. Olive St.
Keller, TX 76248

online: www.thelittlebluehouseonline.com

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Today's the Day!

The "Game Is On"!  You can now view the newest Front Porch Kit at The Little Blue House! Stop by to see the fantastic Design Board showing all the products available in the kit and purchase your own kit.  The LBH also has many inspiration projects on display or you can also view them online at www.thelittlebluehouseonline.com.

Here's the full Design Board showing all the fun items stuffed into this kit! You will not be disappointed.

And some closeups for an even better look.

Lots of great "game on"  papers, black alpha stickers along with a full set of Scrabble tiles, a full pack of ephemera, pretty ribbons, chalk tape and chalk paper, corrugated paper in two colors, a pack of real playing cards, poker chips, buttons, felt, fabric and so much more!

Check out the cute viewfinder below. That just might be my favorite embellishment! And the Design Team created so many different projects with the little clipboard - who knew you could do so much with a clipboard!

Check back this week 
to see more of the projects I created using this kit.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Final Sneak Peek (#3)

This is the last day of sneaks - tomorrow will be the full reveal!

This is a portion of one of the projects that I created with the surface included in the kit. How many products can you see? Can you guess what it is? 

And, just because, here's one more sneak of another project.

Be sure to check back tomorrow to see the entire kit! I can't wait for you to see the fun products and amazing samples the Design Team created!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Sneak Peek #2

Here's another peek at a project using some of the amazing products you will receive in this Front Porch Kit.  My favorites were the ____ and the _____ and the ____. Sorry, I'm sworn to secrecy until the 13th!

Are you visiting the LBH blog daily and posting a comment to be entered into the drawing for a free kit?

Pre-orders are being taken now at LBH as well as online: www.thelittlebluehouseonline.com

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Sneak Peek #1

Today's the day for the first sneak peeks of the new Front Porch Kit "Game On."  This kit has lots of fun patterns and textures and embellishments. Can you guess the theme?

Here are two peeks at a portion of one project I created with the kit. On August 13th (Reveal Day) you will be able to see the entire Design Board, all the BluePrint projects and many of the inspiration projects at the LBH.  On that day, the online Inspiration Gallery will also go live, so be sure to check that out for even more ideas using the kit.

Pre-orders are being taken NOW at the LBH or online. Get yours before they are gone! And don't forget to visit the LBH blog today through the 13th and leave comments for a chance to win a free kit!

Thursday, August 8, 2013

New! Mixed Media Mania Class at LBH

Do you love working with all kinds of media and using many products or techniques in one project? Then you will love my new "Mixed Media Mania" class at the LBH!

These monthly classes will introduce you to new products or techniques and you will create cool  projects using your new-found skills. The first class will be Tuesday, August 27,  with a choice of a daytime class from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm or an evening class from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm.

So mark it on your calendar. I will post more details and photos of the class project soon!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Off to Seattle

By the time you read this today, we will be winging it off to Seattle for a few days' visit with longtime friends.  Then we'll be stopping in Albuquerque on the way back for the weekend and will be bringing little Drew (1 year old now!) home with us for a week! I hope we'll have enough energy for the week!

I just wanted to share what I bought a few days ago - some of Tim Holtz's new fabric line.  I couldn't believe that our local Joann's already had it in stock and last week all their quilting cottons were 30% off. I also had a coupon for 25% off total purchase including sale items, so... just had to get a small piece of my favorite pattern. Not sure what I will do with it but I have it for when my muse strikes!

I think there are a total of 8 patterns, but my store only had six. They're pretty pricey - regularly $14.99 per yard - so look for a sale if you want any.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Let the Games Begin!

It's almost time for another Little Blue House Front Porch Kit!  The full reveal will be on August 13th, but the sneak peeks will start here on August 10th! This kit, as all the kits, is jam-packed with fun patterned papers, lots of coordinating cardstock, tons of embellishments, a cute surface and some unexpected additions! And when you purchase a kit, you receive a BluePrint Guide that includes step-by-step instructions to create several unique projects from the kit.

Check the LBH blog every day and leave a comment - you may win a free kit!

The Design Board, BluePrint Projects and many Inspiration Projects will be on display at the LBH starting August 13.  And for further inspiration, the online Inspiration Gallery will be available to view on Aug. 13 as well (check out www.thelittlebluehouseonline.com).

You can pre-order a Front Porch Kit now at the LBH or online at www.thelittlebluehouseonline.com