Monday, March 30, 2015

Love Monsters

  Hello Hello
I've just got a quickie for you today, a little some 'em some 'em that my youngest daughter and I made in February for Valentine's.
All in good fun!!!
I think secretly she wanted me to share this with you or maybe that was just me but honestly she was proud of her little 'love monsters' that she made for her dad and boy was he scared.
I got the idea from Pinterest - not monsters mind you but other toilet paper roll ideas, so that's where this cute couple came from.
As you can see my daughter was super proud, taking photos of her masterpieces just like mommy does of her pieces...lol
We painted our tubes first then added tissue paper hair that I cut using Martha Stewart's fringe scissors this here then added on the googly eyes and the wrap around belt and finished it off with a hand drawn mouth by yours truly. 
For this little monster we traded out the belt for a skirt...lol
Quite cute if I do say so myself. You really ought to try this idea it is so easy and who doesn't have access to some TP rolls?
Thanks and have a monster of a day!
just B

Saturday, March 28, 2015

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'Enjoy the Journey' Card

Hello Hello
Today I thought that I'd share this rather remarkable card that I created last year for a good friend of mine. A co-worker actually who decided to broaden her horizons and move on. Being that I, along with a very long list of others, had worked with her for many years I thought she deserved an extra special kind of card.
The way that this even came about is that another co-worker, a dear friend to both of us who also knows my creative side first hand, request that I be the one to 'make' a card instead of someone just buying a card at the store. Of course I immediately agreed and set to the challenge.
My first obstacle was to figure out the size it would need to be (due to the number of co-workers-I'd have to go BIG) and then how I was going to preserve the message inside without people writing all over it, because that's important too right? Next was what the message was going to be, I haven't done many of these types of cards so admittedly I was at a bit of a loss...finally I had to figure out where exactly people were going to sign it since I'd decided they were not going to be allowed to write over the message...lol
...humm...
This is what I came up with to solve all of my issues; first I made it fairly large -go big or go home- for the message inside, once I had it written, I printed it off on white card stock, cut it out, adhered it to my pattern paper, then I used a plastic sheet of paper over the entire page and sewed it shut - to get it in the card I used some twine and threaded that through the spine and tied a knot on the front side of the card; as for the signature pages well...that's just what I created - pages...this card is actually more of a mini booklet.
The first two and last two pages are blank so that there was plenty of room for everyone to jot in their well wishes and then sign their name...funny thing is...I forgot to include my own...oops!
Hopefully Tara will forgive me and know that I love her and wish her the best always. Besides after looking for forever for something to write that I felt expressed what we were all feeling and coming up completely empty handed, I ended up writing my own message to her and it pretty much says everything for me, only better because it's all in a cute little poem.
It’s been fun
it’s been grand
working with you
hand in hand
through many years
and quite possibly just as many tears
this is hard
on all of us here.

But all good things
must come to an end
so
to our colleague,
our mentor,
our friend,
we bid you

adieu..
For the time has come
to send you off
but it’s with heavy hearts
and a feeling of loss.
Truth be told…
we’d rather you didn’t go.
(just so you know this totally blows)

But as the wind
wild it goes
running ahead wherever it roams
we wish you happy trails
for whatever the future holds
and greener pastures
where you can grow.

                                Bethany Smith
                                              2014
As for the cover I did a few paper layers and several small pieces before adding on the wood frame which houses the main sentiment, on the bottom right hand corner I also added a simple stamped phrase and included a few more wood pieces to the left of it to tie the whole thing together. 
I fancy the way it looks
When it came time to put it in an envelope I almost had a panic attack because it wouldn't fit in anything I had. What to do...what to do? Well I used my envelope punch board by We R Memory Keepers this here and made my very own, love this punch board by-the-way
As for sealing it... I was afraid with so many people pulling it out or stuffing it back in the envelope it would either A -ruin the envelope or B -tear up my card so I thought of something better. 
Instead of finishing the envelope the correct way I left all 4 sides open, I did score all four flaps as normal then I folded each flap around the card kinda like you'd fold down the sides of a box, on the last folded flap I added a Velcro dot to hold it shut. Worked like a dream - easy to open and close - without either piece getting torn up, definitely a win
Hope you've enjoyed this little walk through, feel free to ask me any questions you have about this card or anything else you're wondering, I'll be glad to hear from you and I'll look forward to sharing more with you soon. 
Thank you so much!
just B

Thursday, March 26, 2015

The New 'Little Black Book'

Hello Hello
Oh My Goodness...where has the time gone? I swear I did not mean to leave and hang you out to dry please forgive my absence.
I can't say for sure what exactly I have been doing...except well maybe the truth is I've been  reading...again! I still can't seem to get enough, I've already read a handful more of books this year so far as I did all of last year combined, that's crazy! And I've yet several more that are waiting patiently for me to pick up and devour...lol
But let me think...there is something else I've done recently...?
Oh yes of course how could I forget I found my scrap room and I cleaned it, ooo and I've been using it too...to create...yay!!!

Although the piece I am going to share with you today is from last Fall, it will give you a very good idea of what I've been practicing lately - Mixed Media - and I can say without a doubt that this is my favorite form of art right now.
So what I have here is an altered recipe box that I turned into an address box. My mom really liked what I had created for my grandma on her birthday here and so this was her birthday request, a new address book - mixed media style I just took it one step further and made it with a box instead of a book because it seems to be more efficient this way way more hip.
On the inside I used standard alphabet index cards and then created my own version of an address postcard to slip in behind each letter, depending on how one files addresses (ie: last names or first names) it really doesn't matter; also if you need to go back to someone in particular to update their information, instead of having white-out or an eraser mark on your page, you simply remove the postcard and create a new one if you wish.
On my information postcard I included all the important pieces that I could think of:
name/address/cell phone/email/website/notes
And my thought was that in the notes section one could add in: birth dates/anniversary dates/graduation dates, also maybe include keywords like PTA or Girl Scouts. 
I find it absolutely astounding how many phone numbers I have collected since my oldest daughter has started elementary school-the schools number, parents of friends numbers, the Girl Scouts leader's number, the dance studio's number - it is ridiculous and there is no way I'd ever keep them all straight without being able to attach a keyword to it (thank goodness for smart phones-this is where the idea came from) so there you have my somewhat sane reasoning 
As for the box I started with two coats of gesso and then added on some tulle to create texture once that dried I used several stencils and used texture paste to create even more texture, after that I adhered a paper die cut then started in with the dimensional pieces, the first few pieces I included were ones that I made using clay-so going to do this again-they turned up beautiful in this project...the compass on the top is one of the pieces I made several months ago. When I do clay embellishments I try to do a whole batch of them all at once so that I can save myself time and effort later, I am due to make some more soon as I have pretty much used up everything I made in my last batch *note to self: post when done*. Also I stick to using just plain white clay, the kind that you have to bake (another reason I do it in batches) because after you bake them you can paint them whatever color you want therefore no need to spend more money on the colored clay in my opinion. 
Anyways I got off track here...once I got all of my clay pieces down I used a few other bits and pieces then added my phrase using letter stickers painted the entire piece with one more coat of gesso let it dry then added my color sprays.
From this angle along the side you can see the harlequin stencil work, the paper die cut that frames the clay key hole, the clay key, and maybe quite possibly the tulle that wraps around the corner. Along the front you might be able to see the clay angel's wings, the clay fleur de lis, the clay roses, the flourish stencil work, the phrase 'carte postale' in sticker letters, and then maybe the paper doily that I forgot to mention earlier.
It blows my mind every time I create one of these projects, layer upon layer that creates tons of textures and then all of the random bits and pieces followed by beautiful colors that make one final piece...

a work of ART

there is no other word for it - it's ART
and it is beautiful!

I so hope you are inspired because I encourage you to create your own Art, make it you whatever you can dream up and go for it!

Thank you for stoppin' in and have a fabulous day.
just B