Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Normalcy....NOT

Hi all!

I hope y'all have all fared ok in the northeast!  I hear it was not quite as bad as initially thought.  My son is in southern New Hampshire and still has power so I am happy about that!  All we got was a dusting and 2 more days of school cancellation (for all that is good and merciful please don't let tomorrow be day 3).  I started feeling a bit iffy last night and was petrified I had the flu that hubby had about a month ago but so far I am only mildly sick - because flu and school cancellation together would just be too evil!

I have an art journal page to share - I actually did it last Friday and was even going to have a video to go with it but I am stuck in an onslaught of technology hell at the moment that just won't let up!  My video camera wouldn't stop shaking, then my camera battery died when I went to download the pictures, next my computer gave me the blue screen of death and a boot drive error so I was scrambling to figure out how I was going to back up all of my files since we have been a bit slack in that area.  Hubby's computer backs up automatically but not mine.  So I decided to go with Backblaze in case anyone is wondering - it can take up to 2 weeks to back up so I feel like I have a ticking time bomb.  My computer has about 170 GIGS of files!  When I bought my first computer it had 4 MG of memory and the salesman swore I could never fill it up in a lifetime!  MY how things have changed!

Anywho, the mixed media challenge on SCS last Friday was to do something monochrome - this was one of those times when I had a GREAT idea in my head but it was tougher to translate it onto paper.


PERFECT saying for me!

Leslie over at ColourArte came out with several delectable new colors for the Primary Elements powders and I decided to go with Beachhouse Blue for my one color.  I used it a couple of different ways to come up with my page - the BRILLIANCE of Primary Elements - the versatility is mind boggling!


The base is watercolor paper so I didn't get as much warping.  I began by mixing pea sized amounts of Primary Elements and Gum Arabic into water in a mini mister and sprayed  my paper.  Once dry, I stamped using Gesso - I was really hoping the color of the mist would come up through the Gesso a bit but it did not.  :(  Next I mixed the Primary Elements into Glazing Medium and sponged it on through sequin waste for the darker circles you see..

Next I mixed it into Modeling Paste so I could get some dimension onto my page.  I scraped this on through another stencil.


I had a piece of "throw away paper" from my first attempt at a page I decided to use it to cut some flower die cuts to use.  I added a bit of extra stamping with a musical background stamp.  I edged them with the same ink pad and then added a glittering center of Gala Glitz - This is amazing stuff from Art Institute Glitter - a mix of colored glass glitter chunks, shards and dust plus microbeads.  The stems are Viva Decor Pearl Pen.

I rarely ever have so much white space on an art journal page!  I like it!  I also love all that delicious glimmer from the ColourArte Primary Elements!

I am submitting this for the following challenge:

Now if I could only get some scrapping done......

Thursday, January 22, 2015

A Little Birthday Sparkle

Hi all!

Baby Brennen was 1 month old yesterday!  Pezza is QUITE pleased with being an Auntie of course!


How fun is it to dress babies in ridiculous outfits?!??!  Little monster behbeh!!!  Auntie Pez also babysits:


And then there is this face - HOW much trouble are those parents in with this kid...???


Ok enough with the baby shenanigans - ON with the crafting!

A good friend of mine had a birthday yesterday.  A group of us got together and took her out to lunch.  I love making cards but decided some time ago I would only make cards I will USE so none of the crazy embellished shenanigans I used to make!  Birthday cards & tags are tops on my list and this seemed like just the right moment for something quick & easy but with lots of glamour - Twinks to the rescue!  Not familiar with Twinks?  Twinks refers to Twinkling H2Os - little pots of hard-cake watercolor paint that packs loads of color (pigment) and tons of shimmer & sparkle (mica.)



I was pressed for time so I wanted to do something clean & simple (CAS) - I love the way watercolor washes look on cards, particularly the shimmer of Twinkling H2O watercolors.  I grabbed 2 of them and added a bit of water and let it sit while I made some coffee and threw in some laundry.  It takes a bit of time for the water to "soak into" the hard cakes and turn them into a painty consistency.  I like to use them when the wet paint is about the consistency of honey.


I cut a piece of watercolor paper to fit the front of my card.  If you use regular cardstock it is likely to warp a bit which does not look as good.  I chose this cute solid candle stamp and used a pencil to very lightly marked off a rectangle area that would fit the stamp.


I began by wetting my brush and making some swashes of water where I would be putting my color.  then I added the Twinks.  The thicker the paint the more color AND sparkle it will have.  Once it was completely dry I stamped my image on top.  The Twinks can be somewhat slick so be sure to let the ink dry for a few minutes.  A simple sentiment at the top diagonally balances it out just right.  I edged it with Tsukineko Brilliance ink.

I was inspired by the following challenges:
  • Splitcoast Stampers - Color Challenge & CAS challenge
  • Card Mania - Make It Sparkle
And now I am outta here - we have another snow day today and that means I have a super whiny child who doesn't understand why she can't spend 14 hours playing video games.  So I need to come up with ways to keep her busy.  We may start with packing up all her toys she is refusing to play with and see if that straightens her out a little! LOL!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

A birthday x 2!

Hi all!

SO it occurred to me - I HAVEN'T SHOWN YOU MY NEW GRANDBABY!  That's right I am a grandma!  Meet little Brennen!


This is my baby boy with his baby boy!  I did not cry when I saw the Brennen but I DID cry when I saw Trevor with him.  It is so amazing...


Ahhh Mi Nieto (my grandson).  He is a good baby - running the new parents ragged of course but that's his job right?


And now I DO have a project for you today!  I got another gift card holder done.  This one is for a boy.


It was quick, easy and fun to put together - oh how I love my Cricut!  Once again the light green tab slides out and the gift card is attached to that insert.  The cut for this is on the Fabulous Finds cartridge - one of the first cartridges I believe.


The party hat is from the Sweet Treats cartridge.  I glued the shadow layer flush on the front of the card and then popped the hat itself up with foam tape.

I was inspired by the following challenges:


Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Be Accountable (mixed media art journal)

Hi all!

Holy snow days batman!  Pezza is finally back in school today.  I love her to pieces and we have had fun but I am glad to get back to my regular routine.  I do not get much of anything useful done while she is at home.  In fact it is the opposite of useful :P  Yesterday we had a little Minecraft Bingo party with some of her (and my) closest friends:


The kids had lots of fun!  We had little Minecraft figures for prizes.

I HAVE managed to get a bit of time in my studio.  The Mixability Mixed Media challenge last Friday was Static Electricity.  Not only did I decide to participate in the challenge and do a journal page I thought I would do a video for it too!  So if you are interested, it will appear in 2 parts at the end of this post.  I hope to do more so if you want to see them be sure and subscribe to my new youtube channel (my old one is wonderful BUT I have been locked out of it and still can't get access - BOO!)


"Let go of blaming anyone for anything, BE ACCOUNTABLE for your own life."


I think that quote is a great reminder.  It is something I have worked hard to keep in mind all of my adult life.  It was critically important to my recovery from drugs & alcohol.


This project uses a new product from ColourArte (my favorite mixed media line) called Radiant Gels.  You can see in the picture above the gorgeous shimmering textural look when I used the Radiant Gels with a stencil.  The gels are smooth and thick and buttery and the color and shimmer is amazing!  You can get them in 12 sumptuous colors!

I was inspired by the following challenges:





Let me know what you think of the videos.  I am working on trying to improve my lighting somehow....

Friday, January 9, 2015

Eat Cake

Hi all!

Ahhh more snow days!  The Washington DC Metro area just can't handle the slightest bit of snowfall.  So we have had a couple days off.  Pezza has enjoyed some extra lazing around the house with her extended Winter break.

While she was off at a playdate I enjoyed some studio time.  I made myself a King Cake Latte, turned on some Downton Abbey and set to work!

I am always getting caught unprepared when Pezza gets invited to birthdya parties so I got several gift cards to keep on hand and wanted to make some gift card holders.  You may remember the ones I made for Christmas.  It is one of my all time favorite Cricut cuts - you can find it on the Fabulous Finds cartridge.  I chose to leave the gift card attached to its little sleeve and made the holder larger than usual which gave me more space to work with so I cut it at 6".


The sketch AND the color scheme are both challenges on SCS (Splitcoast Stampers) this week.  Eyelets were also on SCS (see my layout yesterday) and since they were still on my desk and turned out so nicely I decided to use them again!

My stamped image is from an old set exclusive to the store I used to have - Chocolate Treats 1 by Polkadot Pie.  I am pretty sure I still have a set or two left if you would like to get one!  Just let me know.  I colored it with Lyra Polycolor colored pencils.  Sentiment is Studio G as always!


I also couldn't wait to try out my newest toy - I have bought very little in the last few years but I really wanted one of the cool Spellbinders borders I came across so of course I contacted my buddy Terri at Stampsalive and she hooked me up!  She has really good prices!


This is what it looks like when you pull out the gift card insert - cool right?

I am including this project in the following challenges:



Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Scrapping Christmas past

Hi all!

And so begins the snow days....I scrolled through the posts on FB of moms rejoicing to children sleeping in - Pezza was up at 5:10 today!  She told me yesterday she wants to make craft videos again like she did when she was small - I doubt anyone reading this will remember the days of Pezza Way videos and her guest spot on Tim Holtz's blog at the age of 3...The problem is that she is 8 now so they probably won't be as funny/popular.  Not to mention I have no following left to watch them!  Though I recently signed in to my YouTube account for the first  time in years and was surprised to see people still watch all my videos!  Maybe I will make some too.  I have a hard time thinking of ideas - seems everything has been done to death but then I watched a scrapper's video for the first time who is insanely popular.  It was literally a video of her glueing her stuff to her page and people were falling all over themselves with adoration and appreciation so maybe I am selling myself short?

ANYWAY, I scrapped yesterday!  I have been determined to get back in my studio.  I am currently working on kicking the last of the meds I was prescribed for post partum depression - that shit is NO JOKE!  The withdrawals are scary.  The last one took a total of 1 1/2 years to get through.  This one has more severe withdrawals and should take about a year.  So I am trying to be aware and take care of myself and one of the ways I do that is through being creative in my studio.  AND HEY, catching up on my scrapbooking really would be a great thing!

I have been selected to host one of the scrapbooking challenges over on Splitcoast Stampers so I have been getting myself plugged back in over there, especially with the scrappers.  It is a much smaller community than the card makers so if you are a scrapper PLEASE come join us!  We need more folks!


As I sit here looking at the photo I am realizing the date should actually be 2008 UGH!  Luckily an easy fix....  Pretty sure anyway.  BUT the good news is this is the last 2008 layout I have, then I have 3 for 2009 and I will be on to 2010.  Not terribly bad....  I have quite a number of layouts done for more recent years too so I am not too badly behind.  On Splitcoast there is a goals for 2015 thread where people are talking about how many pages they want to get done this year and most of them number into the hundreds.  I have all my pics sorted so I counted them up and I have 64 mostly 2 page spreads I would like to get done.  (We will not discuss my wedding pics still not in an album....)


The challenge I used for this layout on SCS (Splitcoast Stampers) was the stashbusters challenge.  We had 3 things we had to use - a frame, a die cut and eyelets.  EYELETS!??!?!  ACK!  How old school is that?  I nearly skipped it but then I said NOPE I am doing it.  And I even remembered how to use my crop a dile!  And guess what?  I like the eyelets - can you see them above the holly?  cute right?  The holly came from an SVG cut file from My Scrap Chick and I did the numbers in MTC too.  I use a Black Cat Cutter for my SVGs - love it.


I usually cut all of my stuff out of solid paper and then I see people use patterned paper for their cuts and I think Oh I love that!  Well this time I remembered too!  Actually I couldn't find the solid paper that went with these CTMH patterned ones and THEN I remembered how much I like cuts using patterned paper.

Additional challenges for this layout:

I also have a couple Scrap Wrap albums for sale.  I have been using these for years and they are amazing.  However Pezza does not like the patterns on these two :P


This one has lots of glitter on the fairies which did not show up well in the photo - super cute right!??!  They have 25 pages in them and you can easily order refills too.  The other one I did not take a picture of yet is sports themed - all sorts of small sports balls across it - I can take a photo if anyone is interested.



They pages are held in by super strong velcro and these things are indestructable.  Pez has dragged them around for years!



These are mine so you can see the spine of them - see how totally expandable they are?  Yea the one on the right is a bit full....

They retail for $45 but I am selling them for $30 plus shipping.  Let me know if you want one!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Tutorial Time! Misty tags.

Hi all!

Well, we still have no baby.  My poor son and his girlfriend.  They have been sent home 3 times from the hospital in the last week.  Poor thing, Jess thinks she is feeling bad now and having contractions and discomfort but I think she doesn't realize just how bad it's going to get!  Those babies just take their time sometimes!

Meanwhile, in crazy Christmas-ing....

Anyone else still wrapping gifts???  I have a way to go but at least they are mostly purchased at this point.  AND I have the ones I need to ship all boxed up and ready to go so that's good.  I thought I would give you another tutorial for tags today in case you need a few more!




Aren't they pretty?!  These are easy to do using my MOST favorite Shimmering product on the market - Primary Elements Artist Pigment Powders.  Why are these my favorite?  Several reasons - The colors are brilliant and beautiful.  The shimmer is fantastic.  And most importantly, the immense versatility.  These powders are the base for ALL shimmering types of mediums and if you are like me when you want something you want one of EVERY color!  But the cost and storage can make that difficult so with Primary Elements powders I have gorgeous shimmering mists, paints, gels, anything I want.  It just depends on what I add the powders to.  This tutorial will show you just 2 of the MANY ways you can use these!


First, lets make a shimmering mist.  To do this you will need a mister of water, Gum Arabic - powder or liquid works, Primary Elements powder and a little scoop of some sort.  Gum arabic can be purchased in the art supply section of a craft store or online at Dick Blick and other places.


Add equal amounts of Gum Arabic and Primary Elements to the mister of water.  You can see above about how much to add.


Now mist your tags.  There are 2 ways you can do this.  On the left I sprayed the mist on to my craft sheet and laid the tag down in the puddle, lifted it, turned it, laid it down again and repeated this until I was happy with the color.  For this red tag I used Poppy Red, a great color at Christmas because the shimmer is gold - I love red and gold at Christmas!  For the tag on the right I just misted generously directly on to the tag.  This gives a more even coverage of both the red color and the gold shimmer.


Want to step it up a notch?  Grab a stencil.  I placed the stencil over the tag on the right and misted - do this lightly and at a bit of a distance so it is crisp.  Then I lifted the stencil and immediately laid it face down onto the tag on the left for a reverse, looser version.  This color is a newer one called Vintage Mint - just gorgeous!


Now grab a second stencil, something with a bit smaller design and we are going to do a tone on tone effect using the same color Primary Elements and Gel Medium.


Put some Gel Medium on a craft mat and then scoop out some Primary Elements and mix them together really well.  Place your stencil over your tag and smooth the colored Gel Medium like you would icing on a cake.  The less you mess with it the less likely it is to smear underneath.

Finish them off with ribbons, die cuts, a sentiment or however you like!


The Gel Medium gives it a neat, subtle dimension that really adds to the effect.



These are such a pretty addition to your holiday packages.


I truly love my collection of Primary Elements and consider them some of my most worthy expenditures in my studio and I bet you will love them too!  Check out the full range of gorgeous colors at ColourArte!

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I am entering these tags in the following challenges: