Thursday, January 31, 2013

Welcome Home....

It easy to have some perspective on these days now that they are history...but what remains after time has washed away a lot of the highs and lows of raising a family and living the day to day, is the little leap I'd get in my chest when the school bus pulled up at the end of the afternoon and my four would climb off and trundle up the driveway.  

I really didn't have enough ears to hear all they had to say, but eventually the tales got told, the snacks got devoured and the battle over whether to start homework before or after some Game Cube time began.  

No matter how the morning had gone or what may have happened during the day, it was always nice to think of home being a refuge they were coming back to.

It was wonderful to go back to those days and remember those feeling while I put this page together for Challenge Me Happy.

Be sure to stop by there and check out everyone else's take on the current challenge to use "white space".

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Rough Draft

Rough draft, is a stamp I picked up at a vintage junk sale a couple of months ago.  It's rubber is long ago dried out but I thought it looked cute just sitting on my desk. When I went to do this layout though, it just begged to be used, so after some judicious sanding and LOTS of ink applied, I think I got a pretty good impression from it!

I did this layout to answer the DT challenge at Challenge Me Happy to create a layout inspired by the title or lyrics of Somebody That I Used to Know....y'know, the song that was the most played around the world in 2012??  Not kidding, am I!?

The photos taken almost 10 years apart seemed perfect for that sentiment!  Most of the supplies used (ok, except the vintage office stamp) are from the December Studio Calico kit 34th St, and it's add-ons. 

Thanks for stopping by again!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

DIY Embellies

Even though I know it's not like I'll EVER run out of store-bought embellishments, I still get such a kick out of ones that I can make myself!!  These were made for some cards I needed for the rehab center where my Dad has been regaining his strength after a hospital stay. 

I started by Silhouette die cutting (hearts) and Martha Stewart punching (butterflies) 8 shapes plus 1, and gluing them together, back of one half to the back of another half.

Then I inked up the edges, cuz I don't like when I can see the white paper core!  Once all 8 pieces were glued together with edges perfectly matched, I glued that down onto the remaining shape for stability.  

What's cool about this embellishment is that it can lie flat in an envelope or page protector, but pops back open again for display.

Thanks for stopping by to see what's new!

This blog post is also posted at Love is in the Details today.  

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Dear Little Dolly...

While I haven't been able to create as much the last several weeks as I'd like to, I've also fallen behind in showing you what I have made!

This layout was done for a recent challenge at Challenge Me Happy, to use the word "little" in the title, or some place of prominence on the page.
I scanned an old black and white photo of myself and my dolly, and reprinted it to use here.  The circles are a fun technique!  I die cut the white floral vines using a Memory Box die that I got from Lori at Love is in the Details.  Then I cut the variously sized circles with my Silhouette and layered the floral die cut and some patterned paper behind the circles, and sewed around the edge to give it some emphasis and extra stability. 

At the same time as I was going nuts with that gorgeous Memory Box die, I made these seasonal and best wishes cards with the same die cut.  

For this card, I just cut the bird and the die from the same paper and layered it together for a pretty embossed effect. 

 And finally a take on poinsettias for the last card. 

I gotta say, it's one versatile die!! 

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Happy New Year 2013!!

Mercy me, this has been a sadly neglected little blog lately!!  But it's a NEW YEAR, right?  All KINDS of reasons to feel hopeful!!  

I've chosen my One Little Word for the year and that too, has me feeling hopeful!!  Here is what I posted today over at Love is in the Details!

Since Ali Edwards made this concept popular a few years ago, many, many people have focused on choosing a single word at the beginning of each year, that can become a touchstone for them through out the rest of the year.  A gentle reminder of something they can do/think/envision for themselves on the road to self realization or personal improvement.  This year, choosing a word was a little harder for me.  There were so many areas of my life that I'd like to focus on, and I couldn't seem to find one word that either stood out or enveloped all the areas.  Until I thought of "use".  I am blessed with so much.  Time, health, energy, experience, and even a little talent too.  But what do I do with it?  I know far too much of my time is wasted and at the end of each day I just shake my head at how little of value I have accomplished.  I have good health and enough strength to do what needs to be done and a bit more.  Too often that is wasted too.  Or spent frivolously on myself.  I want to focus more on the needs of others and be useful to my family and others who can't do as much for themselves.  I'm available,  I can help.   So I want to USE what has been given to me, to become more USEFUL to others.

I thought a canvas on the wall would be a good, constant reminder of this for me.
So I hauled out the gesso, and the modeling paste, and the ModPodge and the brushes, and all manner of bits and bobbles I could find!  I didn't really have a final result envisioned and that's good because I'm pretty sure what I ended up with wouldn't have looked anything like what I'd pictured.  

These photos are sort of a step by step of the process.  You really just build layers.  I didn't want a lot of color, so I made it all about texture.  As I got closer to the end, I decided it needed more color after all, so I pulled out the stamps to layer on top of the textures.
Then I used some stencils, including the leftover negative from a chipboard shape for the bottom left flourish, to build up a layer of modeling paste.  While that was drying, I added my One Little Word letters with ModPodge to adhere and seal over top.
Once all that was dry, I began layering on other mediums: mesh ribbon, beads, metals, transparency images.  ModPodge again came into play as an adhesive.  After that was dry, I used more gesso, thinned with water to mute all the color by painting over it with a sponge brush.

Have you chosen a word for yourself for this year?  I'd love for you to share it here and I'm going to choose one comment to receive a little something in the mail from me!!