Friday, August 31, 2007

Expecting Twins

I just adore this stamp from Rubber Poet. I was saving this card, hoping for a publication, but it's not to be. I received 7 of the 9 cards back today that I submitted. The good news is that 2 are being held for consideration. Oh, I do hope to have a publication toot to share soon.

The bargain shopping today was great and more coming tomorrow. I picked up some great fall clothes with the tags still on for me, some vintage pins to add to my collection, a quartet of HA butterfly stamps, a cutter quilt, a pottery barn lamp, and various things for the boy. Wishing you a wonderful holiday weekend.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Page Maps

I am so excited the September Page Maps are up. I made a sample for one of the sketches, actually I made two and Becky chose this pink and green one. You have to stop over there to see all of the creative samples and maps for September. She has wonderful layout designs for scrap-booking, cards, and tags. I find her site very inspirational and am honored to be a part of the fun. This is the second card I made as a sample.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

I'm still around...

Sorry I haven't posted in a few days. Things are busy with the first week of middle school going on. I forgot about all the running around that goes with it. I sure did enjoy the lolling about of summer mornings. I'm playing around with that quilted fabric I posted last week, but it's not quite there yet. It has been cut up into smaller pieces, and I hope I figure out what the finishing touches are soon.

I'm also in full bargain hunting mode. Last weekend was my favorite church rummage sale. This weekend will be garage sale mania. There are usually over 100 yard sales all over the mountain. Mom comes up early in the morning with chocolate donuts in hand. We usually shop till we drop. The local quilt show is also this weekend, so we will go there after the yard sales. Can't wait to see what bargains await us. This little goodie is one that I picked up at the rummage sale last weekend. It is in the process of being!

Sunday, August 26, 2007


Nancy started a gothic arch challenge blog with the first challenge posted today. I never really imagined myself doing this style since I see so many amazing things with it, but I was inspired by the school theme. It was easier than I thought it would be, and fun to boot.

The transparency image is by I also used mini staples, distress crackle paint, distress inks, Rusty Pickle paper left over from the pirate project, ABC twill tape, notebook paper, twisty tie, and a brad. The gold star is a fabric patch from my stash. The sentiment is by inkadinkado from that killer sale Julie took me to last weekend. Thanks for a wonderful challenge, Nancy. You helped me stretch my limits today.


After our end of summer trip to Disneyland, my son informed me that he needed a treasure chest. All things pirate are still very cool around here and many little treasure type trinkets were calling him in New Orleans Square. I had this wooden box just begging to be altered. He planned the design and I executed it. We make a pretty good team and had a grand time playing with this fun project.

The inside is lined with black sparkly felt. I did a color wash on the outside with chocolate brownie acrylic paint. I then taped off and painted the gold stripes. The pirate on top is cut out from a piece of Rusty Pickle paper called Cap'n Jack. I put him on with modge podge. In all there are 3 layers of modge podge over the whole thing. The rhinestones and bit of chain are from my stash and are glued on with glossy accents.

School starts on Tuesday. It's been a great summer and we had fun on our last hurrah. I miss crafting with my "that's not cool, mom" 12 year old. He loves his treasure chest almost as much as I loved making it with him.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

A Bit of Stitching

I'm not sure what this wants to be, yet. I thought it wanted to be cut up for ATC's. Now it's asking to be the base for a collage. It was fun to get the pedal going on my poor neglected sewing machine. It's about 9" x 12".

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Mabel likes pretty purple things, too.

This is what my adorable naughty little dog does when I'm on the phone. She is the queen and commands attention any way she can get it. Good grief!

Monday, August 20, 2007

Good Grapes

I'm on a grape roll today. Thanks to Jan for these gorgeous backgrounds. The large oval stamp is one of the new Stampington stamps I picked up on Saturday. The wine tasting stamp is by of the heart. The brushstroke grapes are Penny Black. (Thanks Terry). I used versafine imperial purple ink and markers. There is a bit of krylon silver leafing pen in there along with some doodads.

Art Classes

My sweet hubby just showed me a link to some art classes in October. Dick Blick is sponsoring an expo in Pasadena, CA that looks like alot of fun. I'm interested in the collage class, the prisma class, and a silk painting class. I don't know which I'll be able to attend, but there are also free demos. Has anybody been to one of these before? I see they had one in DC and one in Chicago earlier this year.

We are checking out alot of art classes since he wants to take some print making courses, but we haven't found any yet on this side of the country. Please share any great classes you've found in CA. Thanks.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

A lovely day of shopping

I am so very happy I met Julie and Heather for a fun shopping day today. We started out at Stampington's parking lot sale. It wasn't as fabulous as we hoped, but it was good. Here's my loot.

Then Julie whisked us away for a tour of the area. Our first stop was my favorite because I got to see all the wonderful luggage art in real life. It's truly amazing in person-so much depth in every piece. She took us to Michael's and I have to tell you it was like a dream. All this stuff was on clearance and then 90% off of the clearance price. It was nearly free. I spent more on the toll roads today than I did there. This is only part of what I bought, because I already dropped off mom's loot at her house. Here is the loot I got for $6.18.

And we had a yummy lunch and a stop at the Tall Mouse. Thanks for an amazing day, Julie. The guys came home from their camping trip early and were here when I got home. They think the fish count was around 47 trout. They only kept what they could eat, the rest were released.. Holy cow....they said it was the best camping trip ever. I'm glad they are home and so glad I had the best shopping day ever, too! Great to catch up with you Heather and Julie :)

Thursday, August 16, 2007

when the boys are away...

My guys left for an end of the summer camping & fishing trip this morning. So, what's a girl to do all alone for 3 days. Well, today I picked up my mom and we got pedicures and went out to lunch at a yummy place called The Eating Room--pulled pork sandwiches, sweet potato fries and iced tea. It's such a cute place all decorated with chickens everywhere and the best food. Then we shopped until we dropped. We found some wonderful vintage sewing and crafting goodies at our favorite thrift shop. I spent a whopping $10.83 and got a new speedball brayer, an old PIT game with fantastic 50's cards, 6 kimono shaped chipboard coasters, some wonderful buttons, sequin pins, copper acrylic paint, gold metallic elastic cord, tiny googlie eyes, 20 yards of 1/8" black ribbon, 50 yards of blue grosgrain ribbon, 2 books of old sheet music, a package of silver snowflake sequins, and a pack of 8 green cards with envies. Also in with all of this I got a cool pair of Quicksilver shorts for the kiddo. It was a great girly day.

I think tomorrow will be a creative day and then on Saturday is another shopping adventure at Stampington's parking lot sale. Maybe I'll hit a yard sale or two on the way. No pics until the guys get back since they have the camera. I hope you are having a creative day.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007


While making these cards for Barb's bingo color challenge, I kept thinking of spumoni ice cream. Since Rite Aid doesn't have spumoni, I had to settle for mint chip, which was yummy. Both of these cards are made with new stamps I bought from Ethel. I adore them.

This first one is by the Queen's Dresser Drawers -such a cute name. I applied distress ink in peeled paint & worn lipstick to glossy white CS. Then I stamped the image with brown staz-on. I layered it and added some doodads. Can you guess what the pink ribbon and metal thing are from?

This card's image really didn't turn out right, but I love how it looks old and water damaged, so I used it. I used the same distress inks on photo paper and then stamped the image with walnut stain distress ink. I think the ink & photo paper is why it didn't come out. The pp is Basic Grey, and some doodads from my stash. Thanks for a grand color challenge, Barb.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

I should buy a lottery ticket

I'm having one of those days where it all goes right. I think it's because I cleaned up my pit of a craft room a little good mojo going. I woke up this morning and created some pretty cards that I'll post later.

I was nominated 3 times for a the rockin'girl blogger thing and once for the nice matters award. Thanks Lesa, Heather, Donna, and Kim. I think you are all rockin nice bloggers.

I went to see my amazing chiropractor today. I would marry him if I wasn't already married to mr. wonderful. After all the activity on vacation and then the moving of furniture for new carpet and then the sewing of curtains and re-upholstering chairs...I really needed it. My back sounded like a bowl of rice crispies on steroids.

At the post office I finally got my Stamper's Sampler mags. I subscribed back in February, but never got one. After a phone call to some very nice folks there, they sent me a pile of back issues. I also got the last set of images for a swap I'm hosting, so I can swap that out tonight.

At the library I found the sequel to the best book I've read lately. You just have to read Women of the Silk by Gail Tsukiyama. It's a beautifully written book about women who worked in the silk factories in China in the 1930's.

I won 3 sets of blog candy in the last couple of days. One set is for a friend. The other two are coming my way. Wow! Thank you Deborah, Penny, and Glitterangel. So, I nominate all three of you generous ladies for both the nice matters award and the rockin' girl blogger award. Holy smokes does it get any better? Oh, and it just rained a little. We are having such a dry year, that any little bit helps.

More Distress Fun

Here is another one I made with the distress ink and cut & dry foam. Portions of it are colored with prisma pencils. Images are by Rubber Stampede. I'm having a hard time embellishing cards this week. I think it's because there is so much going on with the ink.

Yes, Lesa, I do get a ton of ink on my fingers with the cut & dry foam. I think that's why it would be wise to get an extra handle tool and take off the hook & loop tape and just use double sided tape to hold the cut & dry foam on. That's how we did it in class, and it was so much less messy. On my list this week is to stop by one of those big office stores that make custom stamps. I just imagine in my mind that I can buy some of the handle things there pretty inexpensively.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Ranger Inkpad Labels

I just remembered another thing I found out about at the classes last week. Ranger has printable labels of all their inkpad colors on their site. All you need are the right label sheets and you can print out labels to put on the sides of your inkpads. So much easier to find the right colors.

Distress Fun

I've been busy playing with my distress inks and cut & dry foam. It really does make a difference in the end result. I used color dusters & makeup sponges in the past, but never really got the effect I wanted. I do have a piece of foam for each color, with plenty left over. It sure is messy around here with all this distressing, but I love that.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Bingo Fun

Barb is hosting a bingo game over on her blog. This is the pattern on the card we are playing for this week. Good luck everyone and thanks for all the fun Barb. I used an old bingo card and distress inks in marmalade and aged mahogony. The heart & sentiment stamps are SU, the blotchy one on the base card is club scrap.

On a side note, my hubby changed his blog name this week...thank goodness. So the new link is over there on the side if you can't find him. I hope you have a creative week.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

A Ribbon Tip

I was just browsing around and saw that someone actually makes a ribbon iron that retails for $16.99. Ok, well it's a great idea, but I have a free solution for you if you need one. I keep an old curling iron in my ribbon bin. It heats up quick and works like a charm. Just pull the ribbon or lace through the iron and it's perfectly straight for any project. I pull it through fast for lightweight ribbon and slower for cotton or heavy ribbon. I have to give my smart mom credit for this tip, but I'm sure she won't mind if I share it with you. What are you using that old curling iron for anyways?

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Dog Days of August

Aren't they just adorable. These two clowns love it when I spend time in my craft room, so they can power nap. They have two speeds...go for a walk insane and this one.

I've been busy over the last week between crafting with house stuff. The last of the new carpet was put down yesterday. Mom and I made new curtains for the living room Tuesday, and today is re-upholstery day. You know how it is when you do something like put in new carpet or paint, then you have to update everything. It's starting to come together.

When I was a kid we always re-decorated in the summer. Dad was away fighting fires for long stretches, so Mom got busy with her time and the over-time money. We painted alot in August. I haven't started painting, yet, but I know if it gets hot enough I will.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

And, the final post of eye candy

All of the tags in this post and the one just below are from the alcohol inks class I took this weekend. Tim had little stickers all printed up of each technique with directions that are on stuck to the back of every one of these tags. It was so wonderful to not have to take notes and just play. The tags in the first eye candy post from yesterday are all distress inks. I really need all 24 distress inks now....ok, well I must admit that I have 14 of them, guess I shouldn't be such a hog!

To answer Barb's question about the cut & dry foam, all but 2 of the tags in the distress inks post are made with it. It was cut to the size of the little felt things you put on the handle tool for alcohol inks and was attached to one of those handles with double sided tape. The velcro was removed first...Tim says we should all have 8 of these ready to go-one for each color family. Well, he gets them for free doesn't he. Anyhow, you tamp it on the inkpad to pick up the color and then set it down on a scratch piece of paper next to your project and start moving it in little circles. Move over to your project, but work fast, so you don't get streaks. Keep moving in circles all around the project. You can then go back with other colors over in or next to it. Clear as mud? A whole 8 x 10 sheet of it was only $5.75, and I can cut enough squares to have one for each of the colors he recommends...pinks & reds, oranges, yellow, greens, blues, purples, light browns, dark browns. You just rub it on a paper towel between color hue changes. And for me I'll have to change the pads around onto my one tool.

More Eye Candy

Monday, August 6, 2007

Color Challenge Mondays

Here it is Monday and there is no color challenge. After 15 weeks of challenges with 45 entries from all you talented stampers, I'm taking a rest. I decided today that I'm changing it to first monday color challenge. I'll post a new color challenge the first monday of every month. Really, there are so many wonderful challenges out there. This way you have a whole month to play along or not.

So, with those 45 amazing cards that were created, I assigned each entry a number. I went to a random number generating site and it chose #41...which happens to be farnorth, Jan. She had the edge on this drawing since she had the most entries. Congrats Jan...a package will be making it's way to Alaska soon! Thanks to all of you talented designers for playing in the challenges. You have amazed me with your willingness to join in and your amazing entries. I hope you enjoyed the stretch and that you'll join me on the first monday of each month for a new challenge.

Tomorrow I'm just going to post eye candy...way too many words today! Oh, and one last thing about Tim today...he signed my apron:

Distress Crackle Paint Product Review

Ok, today I submitted my first review article to craftcritique. Since it's all from my class yesterday it fits in with my Tim Holtz week theme I'm sharing it here. I don't know exactly when this month it will be on craftcritique. I promise that I'll answer all your questions by the end of the week. Just be patient with me...there is so much to cover. Also, I'll be getting to the color challenge drawing later this afternoon....thanks to all who have joined in. Here is a sneek peak of my article for my bloggin' buddies....

Tim Holtz Distress Crackle Paint is the subject of my first article. I had an opportunity to play with this new product during a mystery class with Tim that I took yesterday. This new paint by Ranger will hit the stores on September 1st. The product comes in a 2 1/4" tall plastic jar that holds 1.1 fluid ounces and has an applicator attached to the inside of the lid. No messy paint brushes with this one, it's similar to a rubber cement applicator. It comes in all 24 colors that the distress inks and distress embossing powders come in.
Ok, down to what it can do. It works on "cardstock, chipboard, paper mache and more". In the class we used it on naked chipboard and it worked beautifully. It is a self-leveling paint. That means that you just glop it on any old way with lumps and streaks and it flattens out as it dries leaving a smooth appearance with lots of great crackling. You do need a medium to heavy layer of paint for this. It is a very thick paint with a consistency like honey or a really gooey mudbath. You can't dry the paint with a heat tool until the crackling has begun which takes quite a bit of time. If you use a heat tool right away, it won't crackle because a skin forms on the top of the paint. Waiting for the paint to dry is the only down side of this product for me. We painted first in the class and then did a zillion other things while it dried.

The paint was very uneven and looked like a mess to me when we glopped it on.. But, then as it dried it leveled off and made the most beautiful crackling effect. I love how this is a one step process. After the paint was dry we used distress inks to ink the edges and smoosh down in the cracks, then rubbed off the excess ink. You could do this with the same color or contrast. You can also base coat your project and let that show through the cracks.

In the finished project and you can see the little chipboard pieces after they have been inked. This is an Ikea mirror that we glued all the finished little chipboard pieces on. Only 8 of the pieces are the crackle paint. The others are paper or distress embossing powder. I had to cover the mirror in the center to get a decent picture.

I tried my own little experiment with the part of the description of what you can paint that says "and more." I found that it works beautifully on wood, cork, coated chipboard, and cardstock. On the metal, plastic, and glass I tried it flaked off. It did not crackle on felt, but did cracle a bit on the burlap. I used a little glue dot on the back of each of these items to hold them steady for painting, which is a great little tip I learned in class. All of these items were painted with vintage photo distress crackle paint. Inking up the items after they have been painted adds some extra depth to the projects. I love the variety of looks I got with this one bottle of paint.

I will definitely purchase this product when it hits the stores. I love how you can change the appearance of the paint with some ink after it dries. I love how messy the application looks, but what a beautful finish it gives. I love that I don't have to clean up any paint brushes. I think the drying time is a factor in deciding to use this, but it would be worthwhile to paint up a stack of goodies and keep them on standby to use as needed.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

My Happy Day!

I made it into all three of the classes today. I spent 8 full hours of instructional time with Tim along with 30 other middle aged women (and men) who were all groupies just like me! My head is swimming. I think I'll have to space out the projects & techniques over the next week. Honestly it's just way too much for one post. I can't get a decent pic of anything tonight to show you projects. So, here is a quick run-down of the day.

I got to play with alcohol inks, distress inks, distress embossing powders, distress crackle paint(new), a bunch of Tim's stamps, and a few tools, embellishments, and so many goodies. During our second class he had to improvise. The box with the kits did not arrive. So, he refunded our money, will send us the kits anyways, and gave a full class on playing with distress inks. I had to spend the $ on more ink of course, and some cut & dry foam, and a fun distressing tool. Tim was charming and really knows his products. Here are a few tips for you.

~Don't use distress inks on white paper because it has been bleached and will change the ink. Use manilla or darker paper.

~If you want to use alcohol inks on a transparency, don't use any blending solution. It will act like an eraser. (Duh...this is why I could never get them to work on transparencies)

~Black Soot distress ink really has soot in it and is the blackest ink of all. It's a must have.

~Distress Embossing pad smells like cinnamon and will work with any embossing powder, not just distress powders.
~Mustard Seed distress ink will brighten up a dull project. If you have a bunch of colors of distress ink together and they look a bit dull, just rub mustard seed over the whole thing. Instant light.

Tim Holtz Day

Yipee! Today is the day that I get to hang out with Tim Holtz. I am taking two classes, and am on the waiting list for the third class. I think I may be a groupie. The first class is alcohol inks and the second one is words & windows and has to do with vintage images, mica, words, and we are making a journal. The third class that I'm hoping somebody drops from is the mystery class. So, I've got the camera packed with fresh batteries, have my scissors, fine tip pen, and sharp scissors ready to go. I'm going to try to not make a fool of myself, but he is seriously my crafty idol.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Inspired by Julie

Today I was inspired by one of my crafty blog friends, Julie. She has this awesome little book that she uses to keep track of her inks and things. So, I made a purse sized version for my own inks, including alcohol inks & markers. I started out with a pile of large tags that I picked up somewhere along the way. I used one tag per type of ink and stamped each color, writing in the color names as I went. I left the backs blank, so I have room to add in new inks. I then took a ready made library pocket and decorated it to hold the tags which are tied together loosely with a piece of twill tape.

In doing this I learned that I don't have much yellow or orange ink, but I have tons of brown & green ink. I really thought that making this would be mostly good to use as a tool for shopping, but when I stamped the pocket I used it to choose my colors. What a handy little tool this is already turning out to be. Thanks for sharing your idea Julie. I'll think of you every time I use it.

Stamp Credits for the pocket, the main image is Art Declassified, the script background is Penney Black, the swirls are Inkadinkado, and the postmark is PSX clearbydesign.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Just Stuff

It's been busy around here-so just a little update. Kyle and I went to the fair yesterday. Oh, what fun. A day that includes chocolate covered frozen bananas, cinnamon rolls, the giant slide, baby animals, beautiful arts & crafts, acrobats, and lemonade just has to be the best. It was wonderful.

Today we are having new carpet installed...hooray! It was just about time and then we got that cute little puppy a few months ago, so now it's past time. It's going to be a bit darker than what we have now, so will be very rich looking. Can't wait till they get here.

I'm working on some stuff for my new feature reporter assignment for craft critique. I'm so honored to be a part of such a fun group. And, I finally sent out a package of cards for publication--so keeping my fingers crossed on that one.

Saving the best news for last....guess who I get to hang out with Sunday morning? He's adorable, he's talented, and he's my crafty idol. Give up? Tim Holtz! He's going to teach me all about alchol inks. Woohoo! I am positively giddy with excitement.