Monday, September 28, 2009

Bracelets and Brooches

Yesterday Heidi and I co-taught our monthly jewelry class.  I did bracelets embellished with grungepaper roses (thanks to Wendy Vecchi's great tutorial!), and Heidi did fabric brooches (which we learned at the SU! convention).
Everyone's projects blew me away, but I have to give a special shout out to Teri, who put three roses on her bracelet and awed everyone.  Here is a sampling of what was done:

And check out "Wonder Woman's" wrists:

Well, we got off to a great start with our holiday gifts, wouldn't you say?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

What's In The Box???

This Friday is the quarterly meeting of the Gotham City Stampers, my SU! team.  We've been doing another round of Secret Stamping Sisters, and this time around I chose to have two secret sisters.  I made two thank you gifts for the wonderful teammates who have been showering me with the most fabulous gifts these last three months.  I also have a couple of birthday gifts to give.  No peeking inside yet....but wanted to show off the boxes I made to hold everything.  There's a cake slice box, a cupcake box, a scallop box, and a card holder (but there isn't a card inside....I found it had another use).  What's inside?  You'll have to wait until after the team meeting to find out.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Accordian Book

Last night was the book making class at my friend Laurel's meetup group, with Pooja as the guest instructor.  A few months ago I learned Japanese stab binding at one of Pooja's classes, and couldn't wait for her next appearance at Laurel's.
We covered bookboard with lovely handmade papers and then attached the long accordian-folded inner papers to each board.

Pooja suggested weighing the book down overnight before adding any embellishments to the covers.  I did, and finished this morning.

I added an image with distress embossing powder (which doesn't show up much in the photo), then some contrasting papers, hardware and my initials.  I just love it, and can't wait to do some more.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

New Cards, and a Picture Frame!

One of my favorite groups is the PaperCrafts group that is part of my friend (and SU! upline) Heidi's meetup group.  We all have subscriptions to PaperCrafts magazine, and we meet on a Sunday, once a month for a shoebox-type swap.  Everyone picks a project from the current issue and preps all the materials needed for everyone else to do their version of it.  Sometimes the inspiration piece is totally CASEd, and sometimes it just provides a jumping off point for something else all together.
Here is a card I did for a recent PaperCrafts group:
The original card used a die for the chairs.  I used oval punches and some old fashioned paper piecing.
At that same meetup, Heidi had us decorating paper mache frames and filling them with photos in a collage style.  We painted the frames brown, then added incredible shine and texture with SU!'s new champagne mist shimmer paint.  When that was all dry, I stamped right over it, and filled the frame with some snaps from the SU! 2009 convention:
I finished it off at home with some chipboard flourishes and pearls.  Don't know if you can really appreciate the shimmer paint in a photo, but the stuff rocks!  It made that frame look like it was made of silk.
The last new card was done for a challenge.  The inspiration piece was a room from a catalog -- chocolate brown furniture, accessories in creams and greens, and a clear vase with branches on the desk.  This is what I created:
I stamped the jar on some acetate, so in person it does resemble glass.  The stems were stamped directly onto the cardstock, and the berries (?) were done with a pencil eraser and white pigment ink.  I trimmed the jar close to the outline and positioned and glued it down over the stems.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Journal of Dreams

Last month I posted about my latest collaborative art journal project, Journal of Dreams.  The other day I received Daisy's precious book and have been working on it almost non-stop.
Although still heavily influenced by Lynne Perella's work, I realize how much I'm making her collage style my own, and each piece I do seems more authentic.  How's this for bumper sticker philosophy:  "Be Yourself.  No One Else Is More Qualified For The Job."
Anyway, here is the page I did for Daisy:
I began with watercolor paper, gessoed it, added some texture (too much, as it turned out....have to revise my way of doing that....too lumpy), and lots of color with the water soluble oil pastels.  The cityscape was made from some free clipart I downloaded, but mostly random bits of leftover paper from other projects. 
In this journal we decided to do one page, so the reverse side could be whatever we wanted.  Again, gesso, texture, color, images,  and a few words from me!


Some Halloween ATCs, just for fun.  All images from Paper Imagery Designs.

Saturday, September 5, 2009


No, not the departed B'way show, but the theme of a card lottery.  ARTHaven, a yahoo group I belong to, has a monthly greeting card lottery.  Submit a card and you stand a chance to win all the entered cards.  This month's theme is cats.  Now, I have no particular dislike for them, but I am most definitely a dog person, and as many stamps as I own, not a cat to be found.
Luckily I ran across this free download of the sweet little girl and her kitten, courtesy of the blog of the very generous Valerie.   All of the paper and accessories used on the card are from Stampin' Up, and I also did a matching envelope.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

More of Through The Eyes of an Artist

I just received Elena's journal from Valerie.  It is really quite beautiful.  Everyone who has worked in it so far has done such wonderfully detailed pages.  Elena had requested that a key be included, so most of the pages have a key/door kind of theme.  Mine too.
I'm still really into the collage style, and a funny thing happened.  I thought Elena's pages were 8" square, and that's what I did.  When I went to put them in the journal, I discovered that they should have been 7"!!
I remembered something Lynne Perella said at her workshops.  Some of her favorite elements to add to her collages were the little scraps she'd cut off of other pieces.
So I trimmed my pages down to the proper size, and cut up the trimmings and added most of them to the piece.  And I actually think it looks even better this way.
As with my last pages for Valerie, I used lots of gesso (white, this time), acrylics, those water soluble oil pastels, tissue paper, clipart, many random objects for texturing,  and some actual rusty old keys.
I already posted the pictures on our yahoo group, and got the thumbs up from Elena.
A very good day in the art room!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Through The Eyes of an Artist -- Circle Book

With no appointments, and plenty of food in the house, I was able to spend the day working on pages for Valerie's Through The Eyes of An Artist journal.

Still creating under the influence of Lynne Perella's workshops, I did two very heavily layered and textured pages, using black gesso, water soluble oil pastels, acrylic paints, some clipart, rubber stamps, embroidery floss, other words, lots of supplies.

I'm pleased with how these pages turned out, mainly because they came so naturally and easily to me. I do think I'm settling into my art niche, a collage style that really speaks to me.

Hopefully Valerie will feel the same!