Friday, June 29, 2012

blog hop time for SCACD!

woohoo it's friday!

the heat is ridiculous in northern VA this week.  ridiculous for this area and ridiculous because while it may be 110 in vegas that is dry heat and YES there is a difference.  here we have stifling humidity too and it is just plain ICKY outside!  and it isn't even july!

we will be taking it easy for the weekend around here.   I will be working on an upcoming class most of the weekend and then heading to our local petsmart sunday afternoon for kitty adoptions.  twizzler was adopted last weekend.  taffy is STILL struggling with her breathing so the vet is going to check her out again saturday. poor little baby thing just can't get better but boy she sure is fiesty.  her most favorite toy is a little purple pompom from my stash.  in the mornings i go down to the basement to hang out with them while i work and she gets her pom pom and jumps up on the couch with me to play with it.  her and skittle make a good pair because she tires easily and skittle is very laid back.  twizzler was becoming a bit rough for her.

i have a great post for y'all today from Susana at SCACD.  She is releasing THREE new Susana Loves Stamps sets!  Oddly Sweet Curiosities is a fun set of adorable little monsters for year round fun.  Little Sassy Crew is a set of cute little girls.  M's Place is a set of fun and funky houses and accessories sold as a set - use them individually or mix and match the pieces to make your own little scenes!  and i get to join in on the blog hop!  you should have arrived here from Kim's blog.  if you stumbled upon this hop by accident and want to start at the beginning you can head over to the store blog.

here is the first art journal page i did which uses M's Place:

I stamped the images and colored them in using colored pencils. 

Then i drew in some hills and filled them in with some doodling that mimicked the doodling in the stamped images.

these images are so much fun to play with!

i even added my own lettering!  one thing i am hoping to improve on in the future!

i also did another art journal page with two more new stamps - Little Lily and Monster Mash:

I began my background with a misting of several shimmering mists made from Luminarte Artist Pigments, gum arabic and water in shades of green, turquoise and blue - i used what was already mixed nearby on my desk.  next i used a stencil and stenciled on some Luminarte Silks in Coral Berry.  Once that was dry I added some strips of patterned paper to match the two little images (susana has tons to choose from!)  I finished up by stamping using bubble wrap and yellow Claudine Helmuth acrylic paint.  then i adhered my two images.

LOVE the little monster in her tutu!

i gave her tutu some extra sparkle with a coating of stickles after i colored it.  i think the little girl just LOOKS like she might have an imaginary friend JUST like this little monster doesn't she?

to continue along the hop head on over to Jenny's blog and see what she has come up with!

i hope you all have a great weekend!  thanks so much for stopping by to see what i am up to!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

a pezza page!

hi all!

what a GREAT day today!  i got alot done, took care of some super cute kitties at Petsmart and crafted with pezza!  she was so totally agreeable and adorable and easy today *knocks on wood* - maybe she is going to grow out of some of her insanity....

I also hooked up my Cricut to the new computer i got a couple months ago and it WORKED!  for the first time EVER i can cut stuff from Cricut Craft Room.  I am SO happy about that!  i was beginning to neglect my poor cricut!

i am off to bed soon so my post is quick - i have been staying up too late recently.  i wanted to show y'all the art journal page Pezza did for the Art Journal Cafe challenge that I talked about yesterday:

 didn't she do a great job!?!?!?  this is a far cry from the usual glitter glue piles she makes all over papers!  she sat next to me and used the same supplies while i was doing my own page and she just went to town from what she say me doing!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

defining an artist...yet again...

oh. my. goodness!

time flies when you're having fun - is it really 3:15???  we did a trip to wegmans today - i don't know if their less expensive but considering all of the specialty stuff they have that i added to the cart i think it would still be a pricier option than good old super walmart.  you just can't beat a super walmart.

after lunch i turned on the food network - i used to watch it constantly.  paula dean was on - love her!  so pezza was watching intently and when paula added TWO sticks of butter to a rum sauce she was making pezza squealed and said it was her her kinda show! i swear she cracks me up sometimes! 

Pezza and i worked together in the studio this morning doing the challenge over on Art Journal Cafe - i am trying to do some mixed media challenges the way i used to do card challenges - i love doing challenges!  it was a color inspiration challenge and my page is something i felt i needed to get off my chest:

i hate when folks start splitting hairs over whether a person is a crafter or an artist.  but it's worse when it is your mother.  of course she is also the woman who told me i would never get to go to college after i was divorced with two very small kids - so i went anyway right on up through a masters degree with honors!  and no she is not using reverse psychology.

here is the color inspiration we were given:

 I began by using distress inks to add color to my background.  next i used some pale yellow Claudine Hellmuth acrylic paint and round sponges to stamp on the circles.
i also used this very cool rubber stamp - a silhouette of a woman - it is one of the Blank Canvas Profiles from SCACD.  I thought it was perfect - that is me thinking Really mom?

i used some sequin waste and white acrylic paint to add some flower shapes and then decided to use a part of the sequin waste itself because it is so shimmery and pretty!  i decided i needed some blue in here so i mixed a little Dutch Iris Primary Elements into my gel medium before using it to glue the piece of sequin waste on.

this is the definition of artist on the bottom of the page.  and personally i think  it fits me just fine!  but it's no wonder i didn't discover my artistic abilities until well into adulthood.  i was always told i just wasn't an artist - it was not meant to be.  now that i have a daughter i make sure to do the opposite and i encourage her in lots of different directions.  including being an artist - her page for this challenge will be posted here tomorrow - i am quite impressed with her and she did it all by herself - all i did was provide the colors and materials!

Monday, June 18, 2012

life is...shimmering!

happy rainy day everyone!

it is even CHILLY here - that's just crazy!  we have been having the most bizarre weather here in northern VA - shorts in february and then long pants in june?  what gives!  i do love the rain though - means i can skip watering my tomatoes!  we have three bushes with tomatoes and one has little baby tomatoes the size of blueberries!  and speaking of blueberries our bushed are loaded but we still have not taken steps to protect them from the birds.  today i thought some might be ripe but NOPE - talk about sour!  pezza spit hers right back out!

we had QUITE the crazy weekend here - we decided we were going to move my studio from the basement up 2 flights of stairs to Trev's old room.  I was planning on taking my time to get it all moved - clean and organize as i go...but hubby decided we were moving it ALL yesterday.  thank goodness trevor was in need of some cash so we put him to work.  and WOW talk about alot of work.  O. M. G.  but we got very nearly all of it up here and the old bedroom furniture down there to turn the studio space into a guest bedroom.  i will put the pics at the end of this post.  it is very close to the same size and is set up nearly the same BUT i have more wall space.  walls mean SHELVES!

despite the mess i managed to work on some stuff for my upcoming class "Adventures in Mixed Media"  that will be out on July 8th on Color Me Creative!  This will have LOADS of info and techniques that can be easily used by cardmakers and scrapbookers OR put on a display on a wall!   So keep your eyes open for that to launch!

today Color Me Creative kicks off the next challenge in the Mix It Up challenge group.  You must focus on the color black while creating - this does NOT mean you are making something about death!  or halloween!  although you could.  i made a journal page from a page i covered in black gesso:
 i "drew" my picture using masking fluid and a bamboo skewer and let it dry until clear.
Next I painted the whole page with Luminarte Silks - such gorgeous color!

When it was dry I peeled the masking fluid back off and then doodled with some Gelly Roll pens - metallic gold and white souffle.  i love how it turned out - what do you think???

Now come on over and join in the challenge!!!!!  if we get enough people to participate then I might give some of the BRAND NEW SILKS COLORS away!!!!   (Thank you Leslie at Dreaming In Color!)  Here is how it will work:

  • 5 entries - 1 person wins 2 Silks colors

  • 10 entries - 1 person wins 5 Silks colors

  • 15 entries - a SECOND person will win 2 Silks colors

  • 20 entries - that second winner gets 5 Silks colors.

SOOOOO that means y'all need to spread the word!!!!!  drum up some folks who love to play around and get messy!  here are the new Silks:

MMMMMMM you know you want some!!!! hee hee!

and now my craft room last night:


and now:
it is set up nearly the same as it was downstairs - here is my work are and on the other side is a second work table with my cutters.  Shelves are in the closet
continuing around the spiral of craft insanity - tables and two windows so i get lots of light!  bubba loves it to - that is his spot.
file cabinet which holds all my 8.5 x 11 papers and the 5 boxes of stamps i need to put back in their drawers

black cat on top and the two cricuts on the bottom but still easily accesible.  my tall bookshelf is still downstairs which will go next to this table but i just couldn't start lugging all those books up the stairs.......

Saturday, June 16, 2012

i love cake!

woohoo it's saturday! 

this is a no big plans weekend for us.  which really just means we aren't going out of town but i don't think we ever have nothing to do on the weekends!  Today we are going to my newlywed brother in laws for an open house type party AND my poor broke little son is coming over to help me with some stuff here to earn some money.  Tops on the agenda - moving my entire studio up TWO flights of stairs ACK!  i sure hope i like the new arrangement!  i am also going to use his brute strength to help me with some things in the yard.

My tiny babies came home yesterday from getting fixed and guess what - poor little taffy has pneumonia AGAIN.  Sweet little thing just wanted me to hold and cuddle her when she got home.  she has a little swelling at the incision too.  the other two are doing well.  especially the boy - he is completely unphased as surgery for the males is so minor in comparison to the females.  so i have to pick up a nebulizer for taffy and give her more antibiotics.

as i was thinking about sitting down to write todays post i thought i should start by apologizing - i think i have some sort of split crafting personality disorder or maybe crafting multiple personality disorder.  i probably have a hard time keeping followers because no one knows what i might post next from traditional papercrafting to crazy mixed media stuff to jewelry to crochet to cake making YIKES!  i am a bit of a mess!

so today we are taking a break from crazy mixed media adventures for some traditional scrapbooking.  i am SOOOO far behind!  i do videos for FaveCrafts and have a slew of them lined up and this is the first installment of my most recent list.

i ALWAYS use sketches when i scrapbook.  ALWAYS.  i love them!  i love them for two main reasons - without them i would spend a ridiculous amount of time trying to figure out how to lay out my pages and all of my pages would end up looking the same.  this layout uses a sketch from Page Maps - my all time fave place for sketches.

i used my Cricut machine for the diecuts - a bit of a frustrating experience after using my Black Cat cutter so much but alas the blade is dull and so i switched to the cricut.  i DO love the cuts i can make but i have gotten use to doing ALL of the designing and sizing on my computer and then just cutting all at once.  i could do that on my cricut IF i could ever figure out how to get the cricut craft room to work!  i have yet to get it to communicate with either of my machines and customer service has not been much help :(  BUT now that i have a new computer i may re-visit and try to get it to work because i really like all of the cartridges i have!

i jazzed up my die cuts by inking the edges and adding stickles and ice stickles!

i loves buttons!!!!

i didn't have as many pictures as the sketch called for so i added a stamped image - this is an ANCIENT stamping bella stamp i colored with my colored pencils.  how i love my colored pencils!

my video shows how you can take a sketch, interpret it and make it your own - hope you like it!


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

a silk-y house for pezza

hello everyone!

so has everyone officially kicked off the summer - kids home and lots of fun activities right!  i have a few things i am determined to accomplish this summer - one of them was to get pezza on her dang bike we got her for birthday in nov.  talk about drama!  lord i have never seen freakin' drama like this girl can do!  shrieking and screaming she was to scared to move - ok this is WITH training wheels AND mom holding her bike.  really????  and this was not the first time she had got on it - no she does this every time and then finally rides it, does fine and then the next time it's the same thing.  finally i did what a good mom does - i threatened.  i told her if she didn't get to peddling i was selling the darn thing because there was no point in keeping it.  so guess what - now she rides.  does just fine.  we live in a neighborhood with lots of hills and she can even do those - and you know what she says when we get done with the ride?  bike riding is the greatest thing ever.  i want to do it every day.  really.... :P  anyway, we went again last night and there was no fighting it and screeching down the sidewalk so i am hoping we are finally past that.  next up - swimming.  unfortunately i am not a fan BUT i am going to have to suck it up this summer and get this kid comfortable and safe in the water.  so summer pool passes it is.

another thing we are doing this summer that is new - we are on the list of volunteers who go into our local petsmart and take care of the kitties in the kitty section.  it is handled by the lost dog and cat rescue that we do foster cats for.  so today is our first day - we had training yesterday.  i am happy to be doing more to help animals :)  as pezza gets older and i am more able i hope to do lots of volunteer things if i don't have to be working.

i also worked on one of the fun wood houses i want to make to decorate pezza's room.  i got the idea from a pottery barn kids magazine pic.  of course there's a a little plainer than i plan on making mine.  i tried to find them so i could link them but now i can't find them on their site.  of course it is possible i got the idea somewhere else too i guess.  ANYWAY, i had kevin cut me some house shapes from MDF (fab stuff and real cheap!)  kevin is awesome like that and cut me a bunch of stuff from a big piece of MDF - YAY!

so I decided to cover my first one using a technique from the Taste of Silks class with Dion Dior using the deeLISH luminarte silks glazes

i started by painting the entire house with Pixie Pink for an all over light pink shimmer.  Once it was dry I doodled on the house with a gold paper pen (viva decor) and let it dry completely.
Next I began lightly pouncing on more colors with a natural sea sponge and various Silks colors.
I put some darker colors on the roof area.  after adding each color i gently wiped the raised gold paint but not completely and not enough to smudge the sponged colors.
the last layer i added was Stargazer which i pounced on using some sequin waste as a stencil so i got some pale blue circles in areas on the house.  i really love the way it turned out and i can't wait to play with the other ones kevin cut for me.  i think perhaps the next one may involve book pages..........

Monday, June 11, 2012

drawing and doodling...

ahhhhh summer we go!

we had the camper in for service and kevin picked it up friday.  his afternoon work was canceled so we decided to do a last minute weekend trip.  i wanted to go check out a renaissance faire saturday about 3 hours south of here and kevin said - how about we just head down there for the whole weekend.  so off we went.  there were not a lot of campgrounds to choose from - it was right off Lake Anna which i had never been to.

well.  what a disappointment the campground was.  WOW.  the camper (which is not huge by any stretch as campers go and has no slide outs on the side) BARELY fit in the site.  so our picnic table - which was severely bowed in the center and unusable, was actually in the site next to ours.  the sewer connection was up so high out of the ground that the pipe was running UPhill to drain.  which does not work....BUT we were going to make the most of our getaway and i do love staying in the camper.

unfortunately the people behind us were rowdy, noisy, drunken idiots for half the night so no one got a whole lot of sleep.  but we headed to the renfaire to check it out.  i have never been to one but always wanted to go.  it was pretty small but i loved looking at all the costumes folks were wearing and they had some cute booths and such set up.  not alot i wanted to buy (boo).  but pez and i decided i DO need to make us each a jingly gypsy skirt.  the highlight was the magic show we watched - they guy was HILARIOUS!  part magician and part comedian.  he had me rolling laughing before his show even started.  then he asked for volunteers and pezza got picked.  so he puts this rope around her and asks if she is a good girl.  she says yes and then he says if she is good it will come off but if she is bad it will cut her in half.  weeeelllllllllll boy did the worry come out on her face!  kev and i were dieing laughing.  she also got a super fancy braided hairdo - pics are at the end of this post.

that afternoon we took pezza to the swimming/beach area of the campground.  wow.  we thought the campsite was at this point i am thinking i have become QUITE the serious diva compared to when i first started camping in a tent 15 years ago.  pezza had fun of course - it was water - that's all she needs.  but it was pretty much an old boat launch area they roped off i think and kind of gave me the creeps.  however - it was nice to get away and we still had a good time.

it also gave me a chance to do some doodling while driving and sitting at the campsite so i thought i would show y'all what i came up with.  not zentagle-y exactly but kind of close...

i have SUCH an urge to add doors and windows to these - i think perhaps i should....
i also wanted to experiment with adding some color...
tried out a Goddess one too - not finished yet...
i like the way these have turned out and plan to do more BUT i do NOT find this to be relaxing at ALL!  i am very tense and stress when i do them so hopefully that will change...?

what do y'all think?  leave me a comment and tell me your favorite one!

and here are pics from our weekend - how cool is pezza's hair?  i need to get better at french braiding!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Stenciled Silks

hi folks!

last week marked a very exciting moment in my life......we got some grown up furniture in our bedroom! yep that's right.  our bedroom turned all grown up.  1. - it all matches.  2. headboard AAAANNND footboard.  3. mirror over the dresser - not completely sure i like the mirror thing but pezza on the other hand loves it.  it is directly across from the bed/stage and she prances around up there striking poses and i even caught her watching herself throwing a fit the other day when she was in trouble.  back to the bed - it is SUPER DUPER high.  like i can barely get into it high!  i am loving it!  of course after it was delivered and set up i told hubby we can't bring all our crap back in because it is so not right for the grown up furniture.  so right now it is very bare in there.  kinda like my naked mantle i have not figured out what to do with...

i have another project from class with Dion Dior today.  i have started her Silks class and playing with those.  Luminarte came out with new colors too and they are dee-LISH!  Susana has them all at SCACD and she ships super fast!

Dion included a bonus project in lesson 1 using Silks to make a modeling paste for stenciling - one of my fave things to do with stencils.  i swear it never gets old!

i began by covering my page in Harvest Sol Silks and let it dry.

 To make the modeling paste i simply added some Silks to my Liquitex extra heavy gel medium.  i began by mixing in Honey Amber and using a chicken wire stencil from crafter's workshop.  after that dried i used the large size gingko stencil and painted through it with gesso.  this lightened up the area so i could go back in with more Silks.  again i let everything dry completely.

Finally i mixed some Fern Silks into the heavy gel medium and used this wonderful bamboo stencil from Crafter's Workshop - there are lots to choose from at SCACD.  i did it over the previous stenciling designs so the fence comes through - how neat is that!  Dion is such a genius!  Summer sessions of her classes will open up so be sure and check for them!

as a result of getting the grown up furniture in our room we will be turning a spare room into an actual guest room.  up until now guests slept on the sofa bed in the basement.  at first we were going to turn trev's empty room into the guest room but i thought about it and decided it didn't make sense since we had such an amazing guest bathroom in the basement and upstairs they would have to share pezza's bathroom.  then it hit me - i also don't like my craft room in the basement because i can't send pez and her friends down there to play for fear they will get into my craft room.  so i decided i will put my craft room in trev's old room and the guest room will be down in the basement.  unfortunately this will entail moving ALL of my mountains of crafty goodness up 2 flights of stairs....yikes!  if i am not on here for awhile you know where i'll be!