Thursday, May 27, 2010

atc's done!

This month's swap at Chriss' Artist Trading Club features the peeled paint technique and is hosted by Gaby Bee.
I finished my atc's and these are my favorites out of the bunch:

.... now to decide which one I should keep for myself .....

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

p is for ......

this week's inchie is brought to you by the letter "p" and the challenge blog Inchy by Inch.
P is for ... plant
something everyone is quite busy with at this time of year

adhered a scrap of flowered paper;
decoupaged some pressed fern leaves;
glued poppy seeds to the edges;
added the word "plant;"
glued a dried hydrangea piece;
and then dipped the whole business in hot beeswax.

The Inchie Arts inchie square was the perfect thickness for the poppy seed edges. At first I thought of using beads, then I thought of glitter - but none of that seemed to fit with the natural colors. The poppy seeds are such a pretty faded purplish gray color. The way I did it was to first dip the edges of the inchie in white glue, and then dip the edges in poppy seeds. I used a generous amount of glue which dried beautifully and evenly without the matte board warping - and then dipping it in the hot beeswax insured that nothing will fall off. These archival quality matte board inchie squares can take a lot of "abuse" and still hold their shape :)

Thanks for looking! Have you tried making an inchie yet? (wink)

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

a spot of T

I am a little teapot short and stout
here is my handle
here is my spout
when I get all steamed up
then I shout
tip me over
and pour me out


I apologize for getting that song stuck up in your head :)
but this teapot always makes me think of that song
and having kids around
we sometimes break into song
and the matching hand motions
for any number of silly songs :)

you're never too old for songs and the matching hand motions!

... (off the subject) and the delphiniums have officially exploded now!

... for more lovely spots of T, visit the blogs listed in my sidebar "Tea on Tuesday Blogs"

Monday, May 24, 2010

checking off the list

Making a list has helped me with my projects.
The weather has also helped.
Like this weekend - perfect knitting weather - cold and wet.
This is my attempt at Komi knitting.
(Click HERE for the flickr group)
It's a Russian stranded knitting style that uses a simple geometric pattern and usually only 2 colors.
I was going to make mittens, but changed my mind and I'm making a bag.
This is a strange color combination, but I'm liking it more and more.
At first I was like, "Oh no, I really have no sense of color at all!"
The two colors are almost the very same tone.
The effect is really really subtle.
Kind of scary subtle when you want the pattern to show.

Here's the same photo in black and white:

Isn't that so weird how the pattern completely disappeared?
I have so much to learn about color ....
but I don't think I'll add that to my list.
I like the happy accident that comes with ignorance.

Friday, May 21, 2010

image transfer

I watched a 
and learned that successful image transfer needs:

In the video, she uses "goo" in the form of metallic paint.
I've already got a painted surface
and I don't want to hide it,
so I used a clear goo.
Typically, I think Golden Gel Medium would be a 1st choice,
but I haven't got any.
I used Mod Podge.
I know it's not a very cool or trendy material to use, 
but it's cheap and it's what I've got.

I'm so happy with how it turned out!!!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

matchbox swap

Bad Penny at The Linen Shelf
hosted a fabulous matchbox swap
I just received my package yesterday
(happy mail!)

(beautifully decorated with bits of nature - including sand from Monument Valley and Amish birdhouse gourd seeds)

(lovely handmade paper with rose petals, a gorgeous vintage button, teeny tiny ric-a-rac and fridge poetry magnets)

(tiny little seed packets and a beautiful quote packed into a wonderfully rustic and earthy matchbox)

(a vintage photo of best friends enjoying a summer day, a beautiful seashell and a fun beachy matchbox)

(like something straight out of a springtime garden, spring blossoms and a bird on her nest)

and Bad Penny from The Linen Shelf
(understated elegance of white on white, linen, lace and a shell button .... all with a bit of whimsy and fun on the inside)


Thank you Penny for hosting such a wonderful swap!!!
I will treasure my matchboxes :)

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

color combination

here's the color combination I used for my peeling paint backgrounds

thanks for all the great feedback

now I'm stumped for what to put on them

I don't want to cover them up too much

maybe a transfer technique

or stamped tissue paper

I'm open to suggestions :)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

loose tea

I've been telling people interested in joining the 
Tea on Tuesday posts, 
"it's loose tea."

What I mean by "loose tea" is that there really aren't any rules.
You can post about Diet Coke.
You don't have to link back to me if you don't want to.
You don't have to play every week.

I started Tea on Tuesday as a personal break from the
"look at what I made, isn't it cool?"
art blog posts.

A little "Type B" in the middle of a "Type A" world.
A rest.
A break.
A pause.
A hot (or cold) cuppa tea (or joe).
With friends.
A "hi, how are ya" in the middle of a "gotta run" week.

I've moved the blog roll of Tea on Tuesday-ers to my sidebar.
That way, you can see at a glance if someone's "Tea" post is up or not.
I will begin taking folks off the roll if they don't post a Tea on Tuesday post for several weeks in a row.
I hope that doesn't seem "anti-loose tea" .... but I hate to send people off to dead ends.

So .... Hi! How are ya?
I've been uber-busy ....
trying to check things off my list
I guess that's pretty Type A :)
I think I'll go make myself that cup of tea now and drop in and see you guys!

Friday, May 14, 2010

peeled paint

This month's swap at the Artist's Trading Club
is hosted by Gaby Bee.
Her spotlight is on "peeling paint technique."
I gave it a go yesterday and this is what I ended up with.
I ended up doing it in 3 coats with 3 different colors.
I gradually realized that the trick is to 
let the paint dry Absolutely Completely Thoroughly Totally DRY.
Have you ever waited for paint to dry?
This requires either a lot of patience -
or a lot of little things to do in between coats of paint.
Gaby's wonderful wonderful blog: Colorful Adventures
The post about this technique is: HERE

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Butterfly Twinchie

Butterfly Twinchie
(This week's SCD Challenge)


here's the how-to:

1) Starting with an Inchie Arts Black Twinchie Square, either draw your image with a "Glaze" gel pen (made by Sakura), or stamp and emboss your image using clear embossing powder. I drew my own butterfly because I didn't have a stamp that would work for this.

2) Fill in your basic colors with oil pastel

3) Lightly buff the oil pastels off with a clean soft rag

4) Apply your background color and more color details in your image

5) Lightly buff again - repeat these steps as often as you'd like. Oil pastels have a lovely way of building up with layer upon layer of color.

I have always wanted to try oil pastels on a black background.  The color has a completely different depth to it than it would on white. The Inchie Arts high quality matte board bases are perfect for using oil pastels. The color applied evenly and I was able to layer and blend the colors without degrading the paper. The oil pastels have also sunk into the material and will not smudge off any more after the final buffing with the rag. There will be no need to add a fixative. Amazing.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

tea and a long list

Today, my morning tea is Tazo Ginger Green tea.
I have it perched on a window ledge.
You can see the delphiniums in the background getting ready to explode with color:

The flowers don't have any trouble putting off what they need to do,
they're in a big hurry to get it done and get it done fast.
Only one thing on their list: BLOOM!
But the girls and I only want to curl up with good books.
Here they are reading Harry Potter #2, Harry Potter #4 and Percy Jackson #5.

The things on my list:
... in addition to the usual:
cook, maid, taxi driver, fashion consultant, therapist, diplomat, tutor, personal shopper, etc.

But all of that will have to wait ..... for now, I'll sip my tea and finally read My Father's Dragon upon the insistence of my 8 yr old.

I hope your day is a good one - no matter what is on your list!!!


Please also visit these other Tea on Tuesday bloggers:

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

I just want to wish all of my bloggy friends a Happy Mother's Day -
and a belated Happy Mothering Sunday to my friends in the UK.
This cute picture is of "Honey" (my grandmother) and Grandad
and their 6 children.
My Dad is the tallest one in this picture.
It was 1954.
She was an amazing woman.
Even though she was busy with 6 kids, she still had time to be very active in local politics.
She had a citywide newsletter, "SCOOP."
I think if she were still alive, Scoop would be a blog!
She was a voice of the people at every single city council meeting.
A short while before she died, she inducted me into her "Turtle Club."
She said, "to be in the turtle club means you can take the heat and the criticism - just let it roll off you back."
And then she gave me her very own turtle pin,
... and then we ate some chocolate turtles.

Friday, May 7, 2010

to inspire

Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French inspirer, from Latin inspirare, from in- + spirare to breathe
Date: 14th century
1 a : to influence, move, or guide b : to exert an animating, enlivening, or exalting influence on
2 a archaic : to breathe or blow into or upon b archaic : to infuse (as life) by breathing

If you follow my blog, you may have been inspired from time to time to go make something.
Today let me inspire you to go outside and enjoy the day ... I hope your weather will let you!

One idea: go for a bike ride ....

be sure to notice what's over your shoulder ....

and feel the wind blow past ....

find the bend in the river ....

say hello to those you meet ....

and don't forget to look up!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

tea and intermittent sunshine

This is actually my friends cup of tea.
She just left for her yoga class.
I loved her choice of tea ...
and snagged it for this photo op before cleaning up.
The hang tag is a keeper for something arty :)


Did you know Chriss (a t on tuesday blogger) has an ATC swap club?
I'm skating in on last month's theme in the nick of time.
April's swap was hosted by Patty (also a t on tuesday blogger) ...
the theme was "Vintage."

Can you tell I'm ready for sunshine?

I hope your Tuesday's sunny!
Thanks for dropping by!

please visit these other tea on tuesday tea parties today:

Monday, May 3, 2010

"be objective"

this week's inchie is brought to you by the letter "o" and the challenge blog Inchy by Inch.
O is for ... be "objective"
sometimes that's pretty hard to do when life gets crazy
I like this image
 she looks very serene with her cup of tea
I think she took a break from the chaos
took some time to Be Objective
... ahhhh ...


One of my favorite embellishments for inchies is metallic gold thread. I love the look of the thread wrapped around an edge - or in this case all the edges. You can use a little or a lot.

For today's inchie, I started with an Inchie Arts Ivory Inchie Square. I applied some vintage graph paper (a gift from Patty), adhered a magazine image, some text, and then began wrapping the thread.

I glued the beginning edge of the thread to the back of the inchie. When the glue was dry, it was ready to wrap. The end was tucked under some of the wraps and glued as well. 

My final step was to dip the inchie in hot beeswax. I love the Inchie Arts Inchie Squares for this. Because they are a high quality matte board, the beeswax completely soaks in. What you end up with is a very clean, smooth, translucent collage piece where all the elements have become one in the beeswax.

.... here's a closer look so you can see what I mean. The Inchie Arts Inchie Squares are available in many local brick and mortar stores as well as online. For more info you can click HERE