Monday, March 31, 2014

The Last of the Stamp Club Project

I titled the stamp club project "Two (patterned papers), Three (colors) , Four (cards)--Surprise!"  And this box was the surprise.  It was made using the Envelope Punch Board and will easily hold the four cards with envelopes so they can be presented as a gift.  Thank you, Alison, for coming up with projects nearly every month.  It isn't easy!

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Stamp Club Project 4

The last card we made featured a paper doily.  I didn't have everything I needed to die cut one so had to buy some and they aren't easy to find.  The butterfly was due cut and a small flower is part of its body.  There's room in the lower right corner for stamped text.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Stamp Club Project 3

The third card was folder embossed and edge punched and popped up over one of the patterned papers.  The labels and flourish were die cut.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Club Project 2

This is the second card I had for stamp club and it shows both of the patterned papers plus the third color of cardstock.  The burlap-looking flowers were purchased and they have a jewel in the center.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Stamp Club Project 1

I volunteered to do the project for the March stamp club meeting and decided to do four cards.  The challenge was to complete them using two patterned papers with three colors of coordinating cardstock.  Here you see two colors and one of the patterns.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014


Sometimes people ask me if I live in the city or outside and I say, "yes."  Our house is located in a subdivision but small farms are located within a mile or less.  This old barn is located on a main road and I've always liked it.  It's slowly disappearing because the owner is selling the wood which has acquired quite a bit of color and texture.  But the barn still retains its character and reminds me of bygone days.  There used to be horses in the field but I noticed their absence just before a new, red pickup appeared in the yard.  I jumped to a conclusion--but maybe I'm right.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014


It has been official for a few days now but signs of spring are becoming more obvious by the day. Forsythia provides one of the first and brightest colors of spring. I find it hard to photograph but I was pleased to find this little cluster of blooms in three stages with a fairly unobtrusive background.  More typically the bush is covered with an ocean of blooms that are difficult to isolate.  Ahh, gotta love spring.  Except for the ahhhh-chooo's.  Allergies can be a bear.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Always Happy

Who wouldn't be happy after seeing this face?  If you are sad, go to the children's section at Barnes & Nobel and you'll see a whole group of them--all happy.  They remind me of my childhood, not that I remember having one because I don't think I did, but because they have survived the test of time.  Love their casual red hair and their cotton dresses and, of course, the smile that never fades.  I didn't check to see if they still had their heart on their chest.  That is a little too personal.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Journal Peace

This is the page opposite the "courage" journal page that I posted on March 17.  The background is acrylic paint and pan pastels.  The black flower images and the white lines are stenciled using pastel (black) and acrylic paint (white).  The white is actually a stencil I made using a picket fence die cut.  The big flower is one I folded some years ago and discovered in my stash.  I thought this was a good way to preserve it.

We need more peace, don't you think?!  There has to be a better way of solving problems than fighting and shooting at each other.  Enough said.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Embossed Label

I got new Tim Holtz embossing folders with three in a package.  They are a little different because they create different levels of embossing.  I think they are a practical design that can be used for lots of occasions.  I added a die cut circle that is popped up and embellished with some punched flowers.  Simple enough.  Now is there a die cut for this design?  That would really, really be perfect.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Spent Cattails

On one of my walks I came upon these cattails which were disintegrating -- as cattails have a way of doing.  I think they caught my attention primarily because of the backlighting.  And I didn't have much else to think about.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Alcohol Ink & A Silhouette

Here's another alcohol ink background used in a card.  In this case I used only a strip of a larger piece which went well with the stamped image.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Alcohol Ink & A Flourish

I played with some simple alcohol ink backgrounds and used them in a few cards.  They only need a bit of stamping and a little embellishment for a unique look.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Rock Art

On one of my walks this week I snapped a photo of some river rock displayed in a neighbor's yard.  I thought it might be interesting to play with a bit and the end result was an odd combination of elements.  Can you see two faces in the rock?  A leaf?  The daffodil wasn't blooming there; I added that and it couldn't be more obvious.  Wonder what I might see today that's of interest. . . . .

Monday, March 17, 2014


Happy St. Patrick's Day!  This year I didn't make any cards for the occasion, mostly because I had no stamps available.  I guess you could imagine all those hexagons as shamrocks and I'd be in there big time.

What I have been doing is playing in an art journal.  After I took this photo I erased some of the pastel around the word courage and liked it better.  The black corner design is stenciling, as it the big flower.  The background is pan pastels which are a really nice way of adding color, especially when a little goes a long way.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

"Painted" Flower

I've been doing a lot on my computer in recent days.  This was an ordinary photo of a flower to which I applied "wet media" brushes in Photoshop Elements.  I added some texture over the outside edges and also the background border, frame and text.

Right now I'm often telling myself to adapt as the house sale and subsequent move are going so slowly.  I think it's a test of my character.  Someone recently told me that I'm being very patient.  I can't see that being anything else would produce any different result.  It was reassuring to have a record number of viewings the past week.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Chevron Look

By layering three of the larger hexagons a chevron look is created.  That was a bonus I hadn't planned but I decided I liked it.  The strip of paper on top helped pull them together and they seemed more grounded with the patterned black paper strip.

And that's the last of the hexagon designs for now.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Just A Few

This card has just a few hexagons but I added the strip of black for balance.

Do not fret--there's just one hexagon design left and then I'll move on to something else.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Hex Times Five

Here's hexagons that are mostly the same size but this time layered with a smaller hexagon.  The flower was punched and I added tiny half pearls.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Friendly Hexagons

Usually I leave space between the hexagons so they can breathe but this time I put them close together so they could be friends.  There's lots of sparkle in this card because the dots on the light gray pieces are all glittery.

Tired of hexagons?  Hope not because there are more coming.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Hexagon Background

I have an embossing folder in a hexagon pattern so decided to incorporate that with some of the smaller hexagon die cuts.

Monday, March 10, 2014


There was a lineup of three old cars in the parking lot of a local establishment.  Who doesn't like to see a glimpse of the past so lovingly preserved?  I took several photos but liked this one because of the sun rays.  I suppose serious photographers would take exception but I bumped up the color and sharpened it a bit and thought it looked great.  But you don't have to like it.

Big Hexagons

Here's another example of a design with the larger hexagons.  This time I layered more of them and changed to the vertical orientation.  Of course, it could also be a horizontal orientation.  I was just ready for something different.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Just Three Hex's

The bigger hexagons are sometimes harder to incorporate because they can be a little over powering.  But by using them by themselves, there can be a nice balance

Saturday, March 8, 2014

A Shaped Card

One of the die cuts is big enough to make a shaped card.  I just put the folded edge of the card inside the die before cutting.  It's fun to do (and receive) a shaped card for a little variety.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Stencil With Label

I showed this stencil design previously but since I had enough embossing paste left for another card, I used it.  Unfortunately there wasn't quite enough for one end of the stencil and the white cardstock showed through so I used that "flopportunity" to add the label which I decided worked pretty well.  Again I added color with pan pastels, easily applied with the round sponges that are available where the pastels are sold.

Vertical Hexagons

A vertical orientation works with the hexagons, too.  I added a strip of folder embossed paper to this one.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Ribbon Stencil

The ribbon on this card is another stencil design included on the Hero Arts sheet.  I added pan pastel color to the bottom and then didn't like it right next to the stenciling so simply erased some of it away.  That works very well with pan pastels.  It's a bit amazing that the pigment in the pastels is so strong and yet it erases so cleanly and easily.  Nice!

Back to Hexagons

 I had a stash of hexagons that I die cut many months ago.  Now seemed like a good time to put them to use.  I started with a packet of coordinating patterned papers, some with glitter and embossing.  Then it was "just" a matter of putting them together in a pattern.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Arrow Stencil

The arrow heads on this card are stenciled with embossing paste.  I added black embossing powder on top of the paste and immediately heated it.  I knew it would bubble and dimension would be added but the effect wasn't as strong as I imagined.  I still liked it.  The flower is die cut (black) and punched (white) and the leaves are also punched.  The tiny dots are dimensional paint.  Gotta admit - stencils are fun and an easy way to add some unique design to projects.

Stencil Byproduct

I may have mentioned that using stencils and the gelli plate can be a little messy.  I try to use up as much of the paint and ink as I can by wiping it across journal pages or cardstock.  And while I try to keep their use to a minimum to save trees, it is occasionally necessary to use a paper towel.  This journal page shows the right-hand page completely covered in paper towel that cleaned up green paint and then was spritzed with Dylusions in.  The left-hand page has just a strip of the paper towel but was spritzed with the Dylusions overall.  

The second photo shows a completed page that I did over the background.  The graphics are actual wine labels and the leaf is die cut.  The flower is stamped and die cut.

I'd show you the other page but so far there's nothing on it.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014


I recently received a Hero Arts stencil that had five different border designs included.  I got out my embossing paste and mixed in some green Pearl Ex for this design.  After the paste was dry I added some white pan pastels to one side.  They are rich in pigment and a little goes a long way.  They cover a large area in a hurry if one of the round sponges is used.  Stencils are great!

Stencil Fun

I was given a Hero Arts stencil and didn't wait long to try it out.  It was nice because it had several designs on one stencil, all the perfect size for cardmaking.   I decided to initiate the stencil with embossing paste and used a translucent paste with some Pearl Ex added.  This card shows one of the design but it doesn't show the iridescent properties of the Pearl Ex.  I added white pan pastel to the left of the stenciling and the rest is obviously punches and die cuts.  Stay tuned for more stencil designs.

Tag Card

This card shows a light rendering of stenciling.  It was obviously a third or fourth printing but I liked the subtleness which made it easy to brighten up with the ribbon and flower.  The butterfly was a nice contrast.  Text could also have been stamped in that spot but I wasn't sure for what occasion I'd want to use the card.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Layers and Lace

Most of this design was from a stencil.  I added lace and a text tag with a die cut butterfly for more color.  The green panel was folder embossed.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Pink Tulips

I have a vase of pink tulips which are always good for a photo shoot and since I haven't played with any blending techniques for a while, I thought it was high time I tried it again.  This was a simple blend with a layer duplicated and a gradient for a mask.  I used a color burn layer mode.  I know that's Greek to many of you, but I thought I'd come clean with the process anyway.  Hopefully you can just enjoy the result if you aren't interested in the method.

Pretty, pretty, pretty.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Things To Be Happy About

excitement of the Olympics

gel sticks
artsy stencils
lucky four-leaf clovers
anticipation of spring
birthday surprises
warm sunshine

polka dots