Sunday, December 28, 2008

Sunday Postcard Art - Open Theme

Today's challenge at Sunday Postcard Art is an "Open Theme". In making my postcard, I was thinking of the new year and the possibilities that it holds. I never can stick to New Year's resolutions but it is a time to reflect on dreams and goals.

The stamped sentiment is by Rubber Stampede and the foil trims are all by Rock Candy. Layers of acrylic metallic paints, collage paper, glitter and a cute image from my stash complete the piece.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Bloggers Challenge - Celebrations

This week's challenge is 'celebrations' and with the gathering of family for Christmas, my mind went to family celebrations. The photo is from 1973 and includes my brother, dad and myself.
We were all together yesterday which is cause for celebration and thankfulness.
The background is wallpaper colored using Rub-ons which are availabe at Rock Candy. The 'Q' brad is for my maiden name which was Quillen. This was a fun challenge!

Check out other Blogger Challenges here.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Sunday Postcard Challenge - Christmas

I'm a bit late on this challenge but wanted to participate anyway. This week's theme is "Christmas" at Sunday Postcard Art. For my card, I used Metallic Pure Gold paint by Folkart, Golden's Aquamarine glaze and StazOn's Teal Blue ink. The image is from Luna Girl, the music is from an old hymnal and the stamp is by Rubber Stampede.
It's Christmas Eve and Santa still has lots to do! Later...

Friday, December 19, 2008

Graduate in the House!

I've got to share some happy news. Our son, Tyler, received his degree today. After a few starts and stops along the journey, the deed is done. Hooray! He's been working full-time for the last year so these last few months have been challenging. The photo is a shot of Tyler along with Clarissa. Congrats, Tyler, you've made your mama very happy! (just in case you're taking a peek at my blog...)

Bloggers Challenge - Non Traditional Christmas Colors

For this week's Blogger Challenge, I used two ink colors: StazOn Teal Blue and Brilliance Pearlescent Jade. The image is by Artist Outpost which is stamped on light peach and the foil trim is from Rock Candy. This was a fun challenge!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

PCP Sketch Challenge

This is a card done for Paper Craft Planet's weekly challenge. Check the site out at PCP. A new sketch challenge is posted every Saturday. My card features an image from a Rock Candy collage sheet.

Sunday Challenge

Over at Sunday Postcard Art, the theme is "Bright Colours". I used alcohol inks and various stamps for this postcard as well as a strip of silver foil tape from Rock Candy Designs. I rubbed alcohol ink onto the foil strip, pressed the area with a CB folder and then lightly sanded the raised design so the silver would show.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Picture From My Door

We went to bed with snow on the ground last night. Delighted to have a day at home, we are having a lazy morning. Snow days are few and far between in Tennessee so they always feel like an 'event' to me. I snapped this photo from my front door this morning. Isn't it pretty? Today will be spent working on projects for Rock Candy Studios and a Christmas tree will be purchased. I'm a bit late getting it up this year but things have been hectic. Here's to a relaxing day! Later...

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Something to Share

This is an old card that was shared with me by a friend. I hope you can use it during this holiday season.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Teeny, Tiny Snowman

Today I was going through some of my fun supplies from Rock Candy Studios and decided I had to make a tiny snowman using one of their glass bottles, ruby color tinsel and Dresden foil. The hat is made from a large rivet and a bead. The nose is the end of a toothpick and the eyes and mouth are jewelry wire. Note the brad beside the snowman to get an idea of how small he really is. This would be the perfect addition to a Christmas shadowbox.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Party Day!

Today is our annual Christmas party with TennGRITS, the stamp art club that I've been a member of since it formed in January 2000. Our plans are to meet at an Italian restaurant that I've never been to so I'm excited about that. We all bring handmade gifts and have a wonderful time exchanging them. The snowmen will be given by Clarissa and are inspired by the recent cover of Cloth Paper Scissors. The bottles are by Starbucks and the insides were sprayed with adhesive spray and 'snow' was shaken inside the bottle to give this look. A chandelier crystal hangs from the necklace along with beads and jingle bells. The nose is a paper bead painted orange and felt snowflakes are adhered to the bottle. The heads were created pretty much like the CPS article using white air-dry clay, glitter and assorted brads, beads, and wire.

My gift is an ornament similar to an earlier post. The tins are Eclipse mint boxes that have been sanded, primed and painted. Each one features an angel with a star in the background that has been glittered. Holly and berries are attached using red garland from RockCandyStudios. A selection of paper beads for a future project are inside each ornament. I've rolled so many beads this last couple of days that I could do it in my sleep! Let the party begin!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Christmas Ornament

It's so nice to have some down time during this Thanksgiving weekend. I've got several projects in the works and wanted to share this one. The tin was lightly sanded, primed and painted with linen color acrylic. The image was added using gel medium. This one begged to be crackled so I used Anita's Fragile Crackle and rubbed a dark red acrylic into the cracks. Holes were punched in the sides of the tin and rusty wire from Rock Candy was used as a hanger. This is the sturdiest rusty wire I've ever used. It is twisted which gives a nice appearance but it also adds strength. The embellishments are also from Rock Candy and include red tinsel, silk ribbon and rusty jingle bells.

I picked this tree up at Goodwill and I believe it needs to be a different color. I'm not sure what will become of it yet, but I think it's pretty cool.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

A Thankful Heart and Edible Art

In an hour, we'll leave for a family gathering to celebrate this day of thanksgiving. It's a good time to take stock of all there is to be thankful for even during these days of uncertainty. I have been blessed beyond measure in this life and because of the hope we have through Jesus Christ, I look forward to the blessing of eternal life.

I wanted to share a photo of Clarissa's beautiful pumpkin cheesecake. At fifteen, she has a love of creating in the kitchen and she is gifted at it. The recipe can be found at It is called Pumpkin Cheesecake with Marshmallow-Sour Cream Topping and Gingersnap Crust. This is her first cheesecake and I think she's off to a great start.

Thanksgiving Blessings to All!

Monday, November 24, 2008

A Page For Charity

Although not a scrapbooker, I like to shop at for Cuttlebug folders and Spellbinder dies that aren't available locally. They are sponsoring a charity event for literacy which is geared toward the early learner. The letter "f" is my assignment and on this rainy day, it was relaxing to just have fun with this little 8"x8" page for a worthy cause. The page will go into one of two books that will be sold to benefit literacy.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Workshop

When I think of Anne Bagby's style, I think of her great stamp designs. This is one of the stamps I used during the workshop and it was about half the size of her larger stamps. This one is about 6" tall by 12" long. I was introduced to carving stamps a few years ago and carve occasionally but after using these stamps, I'm feeling the desire to get my carving gear out and create some new carved stamps.

On the first morning of the three day workshop, we were introduced to complicated paper. Our supply list included various inks, paints and glazes all in the color palette of greens, neutrals and oranges. We each had about 30 sheets of various papers to cover with layers of acrylic paint. The goal was to cover each sheet of paper with as many layers as possible in a short period of time. This is a sample of a piece of paper I did. My base was all neutrals but afterwards other layers of color were added.

Below is a page from my journal. I cut a window using a diecut and covered the page with strips of complicated paper. Note the orange and greens. I had just started adding a glaze (Golden brand in taupe) when I decided to snap this photo so I could compare the change that the additional layers of color would make.

This is the result of 3-4 layers of glaze, stenciling and a bit of machine sewing.

One of our homework assignments was to do some sketching. We picked out a few faces from Anne's samples and used those to sketch from. We were encouraged to photocopy our completed sketch and save the original. Here's my first attempt at sketching a face and I'm pretty OK with it. The copy was collaged onto a piece of the produced paper and was colored and shaded at this point.
Additional layers of color were added including glazes, water soluble wax pastels and more sewing. The sketch was also shaded and outlined a bit.

One of our challenges on the first day was to create a self-portrait collage on a piece of the complicated paper. This was the only project I couldn't complete. For whatever reason, I just couldn't produce. I believe it was the second day that we worked with shapes and created 'people'. The person I created became my self-portrait. Her "crown" is a shoe tap with the words 'high-test' and the number 24 is in the center. This is so symbolic of how I feel my life has been for the last 3-4 years. The two pieces over the chest are watch faces and the strings of thread are not trimmed leaving her a work in progress.

This is just a small sampling of the projects and techniques from the workshop. It was fast-paced and intense to say the least. I hope there will be more Anne Bagby weekends on Signal Mountain. I'm ready to sign up for the next one.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Signal Mountain: The Trip Up

Where do I begin? Several weeks ago, two friends and I were fortunate to land spots in an art weekend being taught by Anne Bagby. Three full days of Anne and her techniques so close to home were more than I could pass up. The location for this event was on Signal Mountain, Tennessee which is around a three hour drive for me.
I worked part of the day and decided to get started and hopefully arrive before dark. Alone with my GPS, I felt confident and excited. I'd never been to Signal Mountain before and for whatever reason, the word mountain just went over my head. I totally depended on the GPS to get me to where I was going and that works most of the time.
By the time I was nearing Signal Mountain, I was weary and it was getting dark. The GPS, which Clarissa and I affectionately named 'Bertha', told me to turn and I did and I did again and again and again. I have to tell you that I was afraid, very afraid. Fog had moved in and settled and the road I was traveling on is referred to as the "W". I suspect that's because of the hairpin curves that are pretty much continuous as you wind your way up. I prayed and I squinted and struggled with a little bit of panic. Sweet Bertha told me I had arrived but there was nothing but blackness and a chained gate to my left and I knew I was nowhere. I did intend to turn around and take another look but knew that it would have to be a safe driveway for turning around because there would be no backing into traffic. After missing the next three driveways after Bertha declaring that I had 'arrived', I turned into the fourth drive and just happened to look at the mailbox and saw the address I was actually looking for! To say I was relieved at that moment would be an understatement!
Here's a couple of shots of the cute little B&B that my friends and I stayed in; it was our little home away from home and it was so close to the workshop.

The owner of this place is an artist and has several painted items throughout the B&B including this door.

We worked on our homework (yes, there was homework!) at this table in the evenings. I'd thrown in a small OTT light which is always a good idea and it really came in handy on this trip. The electric blanket was a good idea too!

I've more to post but short on time. It was a great weekend and I can't wait to share....Later!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Another Retreat Project

I am still unpacking from retreat! This year was going to be a 'light-packing' year but I honestly couldn't tell a difference and it was my own fault. I'm always afraid I'll need something I don't have and tend to overdo the packing. I did end up without two of my most basic needs: sandpaper and a rag. I really need that rag in my lap for some reason and nothing works better than an old diaper. Clarissa is fifteen so you know my rags are old!!

As I was unpacking, I found this card that was presented at retreat by my friend, Joyce, and thought I'd share. Strips of paper are glued onto paper and then that piece of paper composed of strips is cut into new strips...(clear as mud?) These new strips along with black Mituhiki cord was placed onto a sticky surface into a pleasing pattern. I think the size of my strips should vary a bit more but I'm pretty pleased with it. The center medallion is from a Spellbinders' die and is held in place with a brad.

I continue to unpack but I'm packing again as I go and it is a much lighter load for sure. I'm beyond thrilled to be headed to an Anne Bagby workshop weekend in East Tennessee. I think I first noticed her work in True Colors a few years ago. I've been an admirer of her work ever since and can't wait for the weekend. Later!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Betty Jane

I worked on this Christmas gift at retreat and look forward to sending it to my sister-in-law. I'm not sure it's quite finished yet but it is propped up so I can look at it often. Hopefully, if it needs something more, I'll figure out what that is before Christmas.

The photo was taken of my mother-in-law around the age of 18...(I can see Clarissa in her face). It is collaged onto a 5x7 board and of course I used the diamond background. Some of us wear diamonds and some of us paint them!

What did we do for texture before the cuttlebug folders? I guess the swirl folder is right up there with the diamond stencil. I'm crazy about them both.

I have at least a dozen gifts to make for Christmas plus several cards. The pressure is beginning to build!

Monday, November 3, 2008

From Retreat to Reality!

Clarissa and I had fun at the retreat this weekend. We were dragging this morning and thankful for the time change!
I didn't take very many pictures this year but did snap this one of Clarissa and her favorite project of the weekend which was presented by Jules.

This is a better view of the piece. Thanks Jules!

I'm not sure I had a favorite since I didn't want to stop one and move to the next. But then each new project was my favorite!

Hopefully, I'll have more to share later.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Side Tracked!

With great intentions, I attempted to pack. Instead, I was easily distracted by all the stuff and created this little canvas. It's been a relaxing day and maybe I'll pack tomorrow afternoon.
The sky, roof and flowers are all Cuttlebug dies and folders. It was a great day!

Packing Time!

It feels longer than a week since I've blogged. Actually this week has felt like several weeks. My Monday was a Monday that joke material comes from. I have about a forty-five minute drive when I go to work and I was almost back to pick Clarissa up from school when I realized I had left my purse behind. My husband was still at the office so I called him and asked him to bring my purse home. No problem. I arrived at school in plenty of time and found my place at the head of the pickup line. Great...right? It's great if your car will start and mine wouldn't. I had turned my engine off while waiting and then all it would do was make that weird grinding sound. Being fifteen, this was so far the most humiliating thing Clarissa had experienced. Tears rolled down her cheeks while I asked a couple of men to help me get my car out of the way. So...another call to hubby...add jumper cables to that list and come NOW. About an hour later, he rolled into the parking lot with the jumper cables but no purse. The funniest thing was when I asked him where my purse was and he said he had forgotten. Then he asked me what was in it that I needed?

Have you ever heard the saying "Good things come in threes?" Well, sometimes not so good things come in threes. My stamp club friend Alice does a wonderful job of overseeing our retreat plans each year. She is the organizational queen of the universe. Our retreat is next weekend and being the organized person she is, she called one last time to make sure all things were in order at our retreat center. The center had us down for the wrong date! Whammy number three! How could this happen??!! We frantically began searching the internet for other options and tried to just relax.

Life improved on Tuesday. I drove all back roads until I got my purse back considering I didn't have my drivers' license. Hubby took my car in and had a new battery installed. But the miracle of miracle was that Alice found another location that has the very layout our group needs and they had availablity next weekend. Yep, a suite with a kitchen and a lounging-around area, enough rooms for us each to have a bed and a workroom with a huge window. We went and had a look on Wednesday and this new location might be more perfect than our old location. How's that for things turning around?

The rest of the week was pretty much uneventful but busy. I'm so excited because today is serious packing day for retreat. This shot is of my favorite paintbrush. It reminds me of the well-loved teddy bear that has one eye missing and is thread bare. OK, I'm off to begin the chore of packing and hopefully I can clean my space a bit as I go. Have a great weekend!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Saturday Play

I'm having a lot of fun making cards using Cuttlebug folders this weekend. This is my favorite for today. Each end of the card is embossed using a CB Folder and then I masked up to the edge of the design for a clean line before rubbing color on. For color, I applied Encore's Sweet Dreams ink and applied it with my fingers. The sentiment is by Wordsworth and it was also stamped with the Encore pad.

This week has been fall break for Clarissa and even though we've been busy, our mornings have been slower. It was so nice to have a slower pace along with the cooler weather. I do love this time of year!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Autumn Sun

It's been a relaxing afternoon and I've made a few cards. The stamp used on this one is by Hero Arts and it is chalked and shaded with distress inks also. The CB folder impression is emphasized with distress inks. Simple and easy.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Box Project

I played around a bit more with copper sheet and decided to try using the antiquing product on matboard instead. These boxes are the same box. The shot on the top is the matboard antiqued and left as it was. The second shot is after spraying the matboard with a matte sealer. I wanted contrast between the smooth, shiny wood and the faux metal but I didn't really like the first look. After spraying the matboard, the finish is toned down and I think I like that the best. Opinions?

The matboard was put through the Wizard using a CB folder. I'm totally hooked on those CB folders.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Fall Leaves

Fall is in the air and I am loving it! This time of year has come to mean "Retreat Time" which is something I look forward to every year. I'm part of a fantastic group of ladies that meet each month to create. We'll soon begin our 10th year together and in this busy world we live in, that's a pretty long time for a group of artists to hang together. From the first year, we have put together our own annual retreats and boy, do we have some stories to tell! I can't even begin to express how much joy it has been to be a part of this group. We've settled into a great location that we're returning to soon. OK, can you tell I'm excited?

Each member or team presents a project for the retreat and I'm working on some ideas. Here's what I've been playing around with. The three larger leaves are Spellbinder dies and the smaller one is a punch. The metal leaves were treated with various combinations of antiquing solutions and then put through CB folders. I've not 'found' where this project is going yet but I had to share my leaves. They need more zing...and I'll continue to experiment. I think they're a good start to fall and will hopefully end up being a decent retreat project. Happy Fall Ya'll!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

New Artistic Outpost Plates

These are projects that I used the newly released Artistic Outpost rubberstamps on as well as products from Rock Candy Studios. The blue box and cards were made using the new "Bluebird" plate.
I painted a bit of acrylic paint on the cardbase and then layered the images on. Embellishments are from Rock Candy. A dab of distress ink was used here and there to add color and interest.

The box was painted with acrylic and some images were stamped directly onto the box. Again, all the little doo-dads...bottle cap, metal photo corners, etc. are from Rock Candy.

This box features Artistic Outpost's new "Snowy Woods" plate. The box was painted with creme latte paint, crackled, and rubbed down with green acrylic. The image on the boxlid was stamped on tissue paper and carefully mod podged onto the lid. A second wreath was stamped on cardstock, cut out and layered onto the box for a little more dimension. Other images were stamped directly on the box using StazOn ink. Stamped images were colored using watered-down acrylic paint. I tried chalks but they just weren't vivid enough for the look I was working toward.
The open box features a fantastic Santa from the "Snowy Woods" plate...just love this image. The tag was stamped with a sentiment and I used a CB folder on it. Ribbon, tinsel and trims are all from Rock Candy.

Groovy Kind of Day

OK, here's the photo I promised. I think it was a fun day for the kids...I saw an assortment of afros, ponchos, and smiley faces. Sure brought back some memories!!!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Tie Dye Tuesday!

Tomorrow is Groovy Day at Clarissa's school. She came up with the idea to tie dye a T-shirt and decorate an old pair of jeans. Can you believe I had never tie dyed before? Here's a shot of the white T-shirt with the sections banded off. Following directions, Clarissa wore the plastic gloves that came with the kit.

She worked away until there was very little white remaining. I did get to help some but this was definitely her project.

Isn't this neat? This is the finished product. I think she'll definitely look groovy!

The other idea she had was to alter some old jeans and make them look cool. The first thing we did was to print some images using transfer paper and the inkjet. The image pictured is a peace sign that she jeweled up.
Here's how the finished outfit turned out. If time permits, I'll snap her photo tomorrow after she's dressed.
Guess who didn't use gloves. Any ideas on removing permanent dye before sometime next week? LOL!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Planning Ahead

October is approaching and even though we have a while before Christmas season begins, it's not too early to begin planning. This box ornament is made using a diecut from Debbie's Die Cuts. The size of the box is 3.5" x 2". It is very versatile and can be used for everything from an ornament, a drawer or for a box for gift giving. Check out Debbie's site for more possibilities.

The shiny metal tape and vintage-style tinsel came from Rock Candy Studios. The stamp is by Delafield and the rest came from my stash. It's beginning to feel a lot like autumn but it's not too soon to plan for Christmas!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Patriotic Beewax

I haven't used beeswax in a while and it seemed right for this piece. The canvas is 6"x8" and was painted with blue acrylics in several shades. Strips of fabric were layered on the left side. The red and gold embellishments as well as the buttons are from Rock Candy. The stamped images are by Artistic Outpost. A bit of blue and red crayon was blended in with the beeswax to add a bit of color. Gold rubons (also sold by RockCandy) were used around the edges of the piece.