Thursday, July 28, 2011

Happy Sister's Day!

The first Sunday in August has been set aside to celebrate having or being a sister.  That means a lot of us will celebrate this special day.  Sisters are truly special and unique.  They may argue and fight, but when it comes down to it, sisters are the best!

I've had the picture and ribbon sliders on my desk since late last year and was saving it for Sister's Day.  Can't believe it didn't get lost or damaged - whew!  With this in mind, I took the 20th challenge on the EWV Yahoo group to create a piece of art using 4 squares with 4 different backgrounds.  You can see Wendy's first book, page 12, to see her art.  So not only did I get to add a piece to the challenge photo album but got a card made for each sister. 

Studio 490 stamps:  Well Worn Art, Live & Make Art, Art Fit For A Queen, Art Colors Life, An Eye For Art, and Art Inspiration

Ranger:  Plum, Jet Black Archival Inks; Weathered Wood Distress Ink

Yes, that's me...the tallest one.  I'm guessing it was 1960, pre-baby brother.  I think this is a neat picture and we have several like it of other family members.  Love the perspective!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Anything goes with rock candy

Yes, ANYTHING!  This may look like an ordinary wood box (5.75"x4.75"x3.25") but it's not.  Yesterday was the 3rd anniversary of my father's death and I've been trying to figure out how to decorate the box that contains his ashes.
I used Walnut Stain Distress Stain all over the exterior of the box but knew it was not what I wanted.  I then wiped down a watered Snow Cap Pigment Ink over that and was very pleased with the new color.  Kind of like the wood was pickled.  The inside was painted with Claudine Hellmuth's Traditional Tan paint with a bit of watered down Espresso Color Wash over that for an uneven tone. 

The top is adorned with 3 faux wood block letters (Maya Road), a patriotic piece from Tim Holtz's Seasonal Stash, and leaves, bark, mica and a twig.  I did coat the leaves with Claudine's Multi-Medium (matte) for a longer-lasting finish.  The patriotic piece was adhered to chipboard, sanded, smeared with Rock Candy Crackle Paint, Walnut Stain Distress Ink wiped over that and metal corners were added for protection.  Let me explain the significance of these items.

When my dad left the service it was as a Colonel in the Army Reserves.  He was very proud to serve his country.  While he never saw active duty abroad, he was ready if they should call him.  The natural materials are an equally important part of his life.  When my dad retired he worked for the parks department in their community.  He was so well liked and his job performance was such that the park was eventually named for him.  He took pride in everything he did and it showed.
Wendy's stamps from Evidence of Art were a perfect fit for this keepsake.  The sentiment (stamped with Jet Black Archival Ink edged with Walnut Stain Distress Ink) on top portrays many of his feelings.  The license plates are from the Seasonal Stash sticker book.  These are the states he lived in during his lifetime.  The tree was stamped in Coffee Archival Ink.  I took my pinky and dabbed it into Pale Ochre, Monarch Orange, Crimson, Sienna and Olive Archival Inks to show off the leaves.  I squirted Rock Candy Distress Stickles on my craft sheet and once again dipped my pinky into it and touched each of the colored leaves.  Fortunately my pinky was a perfect fit!  The label holder is by Creative Impressions and the label has his birth and death years.

The photo frame was a glossy blonde - yuk!  I sanded some of the gloss off and ran the Walnut Stain Distress Stain over it, waited a moment or two, then wiped off the excess.  I love how this looks!  And this little guy is my dad!  I don't think he was even 1 at the time (1930).

I'm really, really pleased with how this turned out and I think he would be too.  I hope that the folks over at Simon Says Stamp & Show (Anything Goes challenge) and Linda (Grungy Monday - Rock Candy Crackle Paint and/or Distress Stickles challenge) think so as well.  And a big thank you to TimWendy, and Ranger for such awesome products and stamps!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Medically speaking

Time for another Making Art challenge over on the EWV Yahoo group.  #19 is all about using one of Wendy's birds, of which she has 3.  Yes, 3 (Let Your Art Have Wings, Be Happy...Make Art, and Art Is Therapeutic).  While the first 2 are the same bird but in different sizes, the 3rd is a different bird and on a label.  This is the one I chose to use in my project.

This was the first time I independently played with Art Parts (rectangle & frame, scallop trim).  Woohoo!  What fun!  There's also Clearly For Art (bottle) that was shaped around a can to be more round, and shrink plastic (doctors).

Studio 490 stamps:  Funky Flower Art, Art Inspiration, Art Colors Life, Art Is Therapeutic, Card Art Essentials

Ranger:  Peeled Paint, Forest Moss, Antique Linen Distress Stains; Vintage Photo, Walnut Stain Distress Inks; Cranberry Pigment Ink; Jet Black, Coffee, Crimson, Saffron Archival Inks

The doctors (Rubber Baby Buggy Bumpers) were stamped on shrink plastic and colored with chalk.  Perfect!  The pills (RBBB) (stamped and cut out 10) were stamped on Ranger Glossy Cardstock.  They are layered within the bottle but it's a bit hard to see them.  Rx (Ann-ticipations) was stamped on grungeboard and given the faux enamel treatment.

Comfort was stamped on a file folder label, inserted into the holder then glued down between the bottle and frame.  A bit of gauze stained with Antique Linen Distress Stain is the ideal embellishment.

Our guest bathroom is full of antiques so this will fit nicely in there...who doesn't need a bit of bathroom humor?  lol

Friday, July 22, 2011

Embossable grunge

It kind of sounds like 'Impossible Dream', doesn't it?  That's very nearly where this my dreams. 

Trust me when I say that Fired Brick Distress Stain on an unfinished wood frame with Picket Fence Crackle Paint over it is NOT a pretty thing...unless you love Pepto Bismol pink!  lol  Oh my, this was definitely not going to work with the photo of 3 kids peeking out of an opening on an old red barn.  Note:  If you've not played with Ranger's Crackle Paint, let me tell you that it does not act like other crackle mediums in that the base color really doesn't show through the cracks.  It's meant to have a color wiped over the cracks.

I called out to all my Ranger distress inks, distress stains, pigment inks and archival inks in nearly every hue to remedy this mess.  After much playing around I finally came up with a color I could accept on this 6.5"x8.5" frame.

Not only is this a birthday present for my neighbor* (little girl on top) but it also fits the requirements for challenges on the Simon Says Stamp & Show blog (embossing) and Grungy Monday over on the StudioL# blog (grungeboard/grungepaper).  Thank you, T!m Holtz, for getting us such cool products!  The 3 larger flowers are grungepaper and have been embossed using Spellbinders dies (cut and emboss) while the tractor was heat embosssed on grungeboard.  I watercolored the tractor mixing 2 Nick Bantok ink colors.  Ranger doesn't make 'John Deere green'!

Tim Holtz/Sizzix dies:  Tattered Florals, Elegant Flourish, Hardware Findings

Spellbinders:  Daisy Heads & Leaves

Stamps:  Cornish Heritage Farms (tractor)

Ranger:  Distress Inks (9 colors), Distress Stain (4 colors), Crackle Paint (2 colors), Pigment Ink (3 colors), Superfine Black Embossing Powder, Nick Bantok ink (2 colors)

Jenni Bowlin:  Bingo card

Bazzill:  chipboard rectangle

Maya Road:  chipboard letter

Grungepaper and grungeboard, misc. buttons, twine, rusty wire, brads, glass bottle, ribbon, vintage ad from paper sack, TH paper clip

*  This is the neighbor that LOVES grungy stuff, rusty things, old buttons, vintage bottles and flowers.  One of her brothers is on the bottom of the heap, the little girl in the middle is her cousin.  This barn was on her parents' farm but it's no longer standing.  There are still barns on the property, along with several vintage tractors.  They had several horses when she was a young girl, hence the ad in the bottle.  I've gone 'picking' in the attic of one of the window frames, old glass bottles, etc.  Fun but scary because some of the floorboards are missing. 

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Life's fears and dreams

Running behind schedule again.  I've been busy sorting my stamp collection so I can downsize but I just had to take a break from all the bending, moving and decision-making.  Where have all those stamps come from and why are they in my collection?  

Why not see if I can create some art for the Grungy Monday and Simon Says Stamp & Show challenges?  Grungy Monday 15 features the amazing rusted enamel technique found on Tim Holtz's blog while stitching is all the rage over at SSS&S.  Tim's technique is on the larger tag; faux stitching is on that tag as well as a blanket stitch using gold thread.

Tim Holtz:  Stuff To Say stamp set; small rosette die, mini paper clip, key

Studio 490: faux stitches from Just Sew Artsy set

Ranger:  Old Paper, Vintage Photo, Fired Brick, Peeled Paint, Black Soot, Walnut Stain Distress Inks; Perfect Pearls Gold mist

DecoArt:  Mocha Creme Paper Perfect (behind the text image)

Thursday, July 14, 2011

A challenge for a cheese box

Hey, we're on a 2-week challenge to create a piece of art using striped paper and a rectangle frame over on the EWV Yahoo group.  Why don't you join us?  The deadline isn't until Tuesday night.

I took this cheese box
4.25" in diameter

and added some striped paper, the leftover piece of crepe paper ribbon roses (scalloped strip), and a chipboard rectangle frame and came up with this.

Finished garden walk album

After I glued the 2 chipboard frames together (for more depth) I covered them with Fired Brick Distress Ink.  See the areas without ink?  That's the glue that I got all over the frames - oops!  But I love the distressed look so I'm keeping it just like that!  Amazing how a messy finger can make something cool - lol!

Our community garden walk was last weekend.  I selected 12 photos, made 13 playing cards (the title page is one) and created a rather unique keepsake of the day.

Studio 490 stamps:  Well Worn Art, Book Art Basics, Flower Art, Rose Art Part 2
Ranger:  Tea Dye, Fired Brick, Scattered Straw, Wild Honey, Vintage Photo Distress Inks; Olive, Pale Ochre, Saffron, Coffee, Jet Black Archival Inks; Gold Paint Dabber
Hero Arts: Playful Alphabet

Don't forget to scrap your garden photos!  It will help you remember how nice (or not) the garden looked this year, what to plant (or not) next year, color combos you want to try again (or not), etc. 
Inside cover


All 13 cards

Back of playing card

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Happy birthday, Vic!

One of my fellow EWV members is celebrating her birthday today....hope it's super special, Vic!

I'd seen a card in a magazine that I liked so I recreated it ala Vecchi style.  It's a great way to challenge yourself.  There's a bit of vellum, shrink plastic and glossy paper involved as well as plain old cardstock.

Studio 490 stamps:  It's Face Art, Nature's Art, Sketch Art, Botanical Art, Card Art Essentials

Ranger products:  Olive and Jet Black Archival Inks, Eucalyptus Stickles, Bundled Sage Distress Stickles, Bundled Sage Distress Ink

Friday, July 8, 2011

Another out of date range holiday

Oh yeah, sometimes you just have to work on an idea when it pops up whether it's date-relevant or not.  Since I still had some Perfect Pearls-Distress Ink mixes left from my project on Wednesday I decided to use them in my Simon Says Stamp & Show blog project that must feature a flourish.  In fact, they were the catalyst for my idea.  Well, what would you do with red, green, gold and brown?  Yup, Christmas!

I started out with a 5" chipboard circle and painted it with Claudine Hellmuth's Traditional Tan paint but left some spots bare.  Once dry I stamped Wendy's poinsettia flourish in Jet Black Archival Ink.  Various brown distress inks were sponged over the the entire piece then I smeared some Rock Candy Distress Crackle Paint over all, again not being too neat.  After the crackling was done I smeared more brown distress inks over the piece.

Using the leftover Mini Mister mixtures, I sprayed another piece of cardstock with all the colors (not overlapping the colors).  Wendy's image was stamped multiple times so I could cut and stack the layers.  Between each layer is a bit of foam tape; the flower petals were pinched for more dimension.

Maya Road chipboard flourishes were touched up with Peeled Paint DI as well as the green MM mix.  The brown MM provided the background for the stamped fragment.  The Gold Paint Dabber was run around the edge as a finishing touch.

Using some of the leftover crepe paper ribbon from Wednesday's tag I sprayed it with the red mix then ran it through my Big Shot using Tim's medium rosette die.  I did have to add tape to the back side as the ribbon is thin and fragile.  LOTS of glue holds this fiddly piece on...but it was worth the hassle (I think).  Last, but not least, I confiscated some gold chain from an old necklace.

I know quite a few stores celebrate Christmas in July.  After all, crafters need to get started early if they're going to finish cards, decorations and gifts in time.  So think of this as my way of jump starting the creativity process.  You probably don't want to hear this but I already have my holiday card idea worked out.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Sew, you're having a birthday

Well, maybe YOU aren't but my mom and  a sis each have one next week so this tag was made with them in mind.  Both are really talented seamstresses but neither have much need to sew now...just repairs.

This tag features the really cool technique that Tim shared back in March 2008 - using Perfect Pearls and Distress Ink refills in Ranger's Mini Misters.  Over at Studio L3 Linda chose this technique for Grungy Monday 14. 

I'll just list the ingredients used; I'm sure you can figure out how I made the tag.  For the thread label I painted Claudine Hellmuth's Traditional Tan paint on chipboard, stamped the label in Fired Brick DI, cut it out, ran Tim's distress tool around the edge, smeared Frayed Burlap and Walnut Stain DIs over the edges, and added a piece of foam tape for dimension.

Tim Holtz:  Haberdashery stamp set

River City Rubber Works: Sew you're having a birthday

Ranger:  Coffee, Sienna, Jet Black Archival Inks; Walnut Stain, Fired Brick, Frayed Burlap Distress Inks; Snow Cap Paint Dabber

Mini Misters: Fired Brick/PP Gold, Shabby Shutters/PP Mandarin, Old Paper/PP Cappucino

Misc.: white twill tape, gold baby rickrack, wine crepe paper ribbon, red thread (stitched around tag)

Monday, July 4, 2011

Let's hear it for the red, white and blue!

Hope you're having a safe & happy 4th of July!  And that your a/c is working since so much of the country is experiencing some sizzling hot days.

Lori, our wonderful list mom on the EWV group, chose a color theme for this challenge as opposed to using one of Wendy's art pieces for inspiration.  Of course, using Wendy's stamps (I folowed her style as well) were still required.  The Maya Road chipboard flower negative and words had been sitting on my desktop for quite some time.  Things just sort of 'happened' when I saw them and this is the result.

Studio 490 stamps: Celestial Art, Make Mine Mini Art, Live & Make Art

Ranger:  Snow Cap Acrylic Paint Dabber; Frayed Burlap, Walnut Stain, Faded Jeans, Fired Brick Distress Inks; Picket Fence, Fired Brick, Faded Jeans Distress Stickles; Jet Black, Coffee Archival Ink

Miscellaneous:  red plaid scrap, brads, seam binding

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Artist's new home

My oldest niece will be renting her first house in a few weeks - gasp, wasn't she just a toddler a few days ago???  She's an elementary school art teacher so I knew I wanted to incorporate some art-related thing.  Using the Warhol technique was first in my mind.  And thank goodness for Studio 490 stamps because they brought it all together so easily.  After stamping the houses I smeared the same inks on white cardstock to create the colored layers behind each house.  Easy peasy and no searching for coordinating paper!

Studio 490:  Residential Art

Ranger:  Saffron, Monarch Orange, Crimson, Jet Black, French Ultramarine Archival Inks; Antique Linen Distress Ink

Saturday, July 2, 2011


We recently stayed with good friends in their home on our trip to NJ/NY.  I wasn't sure what sort of a thank you gift I could make to let them know how much we appreciated their hospitality.  We've been friends since 1987 and they're more like family than friends so they've had plenty of occasions when they've been recipients of my handiwork. 

I already knew I wanted to incorporate 'home' throughout my piece.  Fortunately over on the Simon Says Stamp & Show blog this week's theme was to use a word in your art.  Wendy's house stamp and sentiment fit the bill perfectly.  Their kitchen is Mustard Seed, Rusty Hinge, Peeled Paint and a bit of Chipped Sapphire.  How's that for an awesome color scheme!?!?!?

The off-white wire wall art was from Michaels clearance aisle last year.  It was completely unadorned.  No longer.  A strip of music paper (the family always has music on - rarely tv), a house (colored like their house), plenty of Wendy's flower stamps and leaves (we planted a garden together in their backyard before we left NJ), some Martha Stewart dark blue ribbon, a fragment and a key finish the gift.

Studio 490 stamp sets: Ticket To Art, Dimensional Rose Art, Make Mine Mini Art, Homemade Art, Live & Make Art

Ranger products:  Vintage Photo, Walnut Stain Distress Inks; Jet Black, Saffron, Monarch Orange, Sienna, French Ultramarine Archival Inks; Chipped Sapphire, Rusty Hinge, Weathered Wood, Peeled Paint, Walnut Stain, Scattered Straw Distress Inks

Tim Holtz: fragment charm