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

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Making Stamps

Do you ever need a stamp for a one-time use and don't want to spend time looking for one the right size or spend money on one? Make your own!

This is an easy, peasy way to make some fun stamps. All you need is "fun foam" which you can get in any craft store, usually in the kids section. I had the thinner kind, so I glued two pieces together to give more depth. But there is a thicker kind which would probably work better. You will also need scissors, cardboard (optional) and hot glue.

Cut out a shape that you want (in the upper left corner below, it is barely visible, but I cut a saguaro cactus). You can also just cut geometric shapes for a random pattern. I also dripped hot glue directly onto the foam to make a "stringy" pattern. This would work better with a large hot glue gun but I was using a mini and the strings are a bit too thin.

See my stamps below. I mounted them onto corrugated cardboard pieces to make them easier to stamp with. I tried several white glues which did not work so use hot glue for sticking foam to foam.

And here are my test stampings using paint. The top cactus was the first impression; the one below is a second impression.  To stamp I first brayered acrylic paint directly onto a craft mat and tapped the stamp into the paint, then stamped onto paper (see cactus).  With this method it was hard to get the right amount of paint on the stamp. I found it was better to brayer the paint directly onto the stamp so as not to get too much paint.  I think these would work with stamping ink as well, but I haven't tested them yet.

As I mentioned, the string pattern is very thin and delicate. It doesn't pick up much paint or stamp a clear impression.

This was a fun exercise and I have some neat stamps for backgrounds. The cactus I need for an upcoming retreat with a Mexican theme!

Monday, June 26, 2017

And one more (Life Documented)

June Week 3

I so liked the layout I did several weeks ago using blocks of colors that I did it again for this past week.  I doodled the frames in black and white and then added doodled scallops. 
I like the white space for a change!

This week was a quiet one and I was able to get together with a friend for shopping. She bought yards and yards of fabric and wants me to sew valances for her kitchen and breakfast room. 

I also bought fleece to make a tied blanket for my grandson, Drew, who is turning 5 next month. I had made one for his 2-year-old brother for his birthday and he keeps asking me where his is, so...  I used fabric with construction vehicles as he just loves anything construction-related. It turned out cute and I think he will love it!

Monday, June 19, 2017

Another week (Life Documented) and a tag

Another week finished in my planner. 

This was a quiet week - after several busy ones - and I used a few odds and ends for the right page. The flower "tip-in" is a scrap leftover from my play with  alcohol inks for the recent tag swap. On the back I added a vintage photo of my hometown, Stowe, which I'd picked up on my trip. The colorful tag at the top is a Dyan Reaveley sample from a stamp catalog. I just loved the colors and quote but don't have the stamps.

 For the calendar page on the left, I used Jane Davenport Mermaid Markers and the days are written on my handmade label stickers.

This weekend I received my tag from the swap. It's very large - 3.5" x 7.5" - and the "polished stone" alcohol ink strips are woven together. The Day of the Dead skull is die cut from silver paper and will be perfect to add to my book for my annual retreat in July which has a Mexican theme. Thanks Jan!

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Life Documented 2017 - June Week 1

Here is the first ten days of June in my Traveler's Notebook planner. I used both pages to include the last 3 days of the preceding week.  The dividers and scallops are cut from some very old shaving cream marbled paper that I was about to throw away. The remainder is mostly stamps and images cut from brochures or magazines.

I am hosting a June tag swap using alcohol ink techniques.  We make one tag and swap with our partner. This is the one I sent off. 

I used glossy paper and dripped the alcohol inks all over instead of the usual punching with a felt blending tool. I also dripped alcohol in the middle of the puddles which made them fan out more and created some great texture. I doodled with black and white pen and then stamped the three words. The tag is mounted on a large black tag and machine-stitched. I'm looking forward to receiving mine.

Friday, June 16, 2017

I'm Back - and Catching Up

I think that's my current life theme song - "leaving on a jet plane and I'm back and catching up"!
I accompanied my daughter and her two little boys to Vermont last week to visit my mom and help celebrate her 89th birthday. We arrived on Wednesday and our hubbies arrived on Friday. We all came home Monday. We had beautifully cool, sunny weather, but it got hot and humid the last day and there is nothing worse than being in Vermont with no AC with weather in the 90's!

It was a fun week but it was good to get home. I've been recuperating since!

Sunday, June 4, 2017

"True Colors" Round Robin

I am participating in an altered book round robin where we exchange our books and everyone in the group works on all the books. We have color themes, but no other rules.
I posted previously on this here.

The latest book I received is a large, shaped, masonite book. The owner chose whites, creams and denim as her colors.

This is the spread I created.

I used crackle paint on the backgrounds and then layered old pattern instruction sheets, denim, ticking fabric and several laces.  

Left page

On this page I added several vintage images, a piece of vintage measuring tape, lots of creamy and white buttons, a few black snaps and a flower made with circles of denim.

Right page

The focal point of this page is a vintage photo of two Victorian women in white "tea dresses."  I made the ruffle with sewing pattern tissue, added more buttons, a silver scissors charm and another denim flower.

This has been sent off to the next person in line and I anticipate my next book after the
middle of the month.

My blog will be quiet for the next ten days. I am off to Vermont with my daughter, Kelly and her two little boys, to visit my mother. See you later!

Friday, June 2, 2017

Life Documented 2017 - Last week of May

Here is my spread for the last week of May. I can't believe the year is almost half over! 

Only four days of this week are in May, so I used large blocks of white space over the two pages for the days. It was a sad week with the death of a friend and I knew I would need larger areas for journaling.

I used pink and yellow "Mermaid Markers" for the background, leaving the white of the paper for the blocks. Then I doodled frames around each block, used numbers punched from an old calendar and stamped the days of the week. I stamped the little hearts on tissue paper and decoupaged that to the pages, along with various stickers and cutouts.

My Traveler's Notebook that I am working in is more than full and it's time to start a new one! Look at all that lovely chunkiness!  I think I will limit the next one to three months so pages won't be falling out like in this one. (I do love a stuffed, FAT journal though!)