Monday, December 29, 2008

Another Guest Artist and Random Stuff

It seems weird to post another guest artist so soon. However, I am running out of time to post Christmas cards, and I wanted to share a card I received from my friend Donna. Not only is Donna a fantastic author and humorous reality tv blogger, she is an amazing crafter too. I had to use the word "crafter" because she pretty much does it, mini books, altered items, beading, etc. Not only that, but she is the most prolific crafter I know. It is disgusting.

For Donna's card, she stamped one of the Penny Black pea images onto white cardstock and colored it with Copic markers. Can you believe her coloring? It is wonderful! The image makes me smile too.

I hope everyone had a great holiday. I wanted to share some picts I took during a recent visit to Baltimore. There is a street in the Hampden area that is rather subtle with their Christmas lights.

Here is a shot of some of the row homes. Understated, yet chic. :)

Here is a shot of one side of the street from the other side. Notice how they have lights running across the street overhead. You know, because there aren't enough lights...

Some of the people let you come up on their porches (and even into their homes). Here is a shot from one of the porches.

The next picute isn't the best, but it made me laugh. What is that sculpture you ask? Why, it is a metal Santa crab being pulled by eight tiny crabs. One of the crabs even has a can of Old Bay in hand. Gosh, I love Baltimore.

It wouldn't be Christmas without some blow-up decorations. Luckily, there were plenty to see.

Switching topics again..what do you think of the larger blog size? I noticed that most people have larger monitors than I do and maybe a larger blog and font size would be better. Let me know your thoughts.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

I wanted to post a quick note to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas! I am spending the weekend with family in VA Beach and managed to sneak away for a few minutes to post. I think I am supposed to be helping with dinner, but if they can't find me...

Today's card is the one I made for my brother this Christmas. When I saw these stamps from Impression Obsession, I imediately thought of him. I can't tell you how many times I have been left with a face full of snow when around my brother. I have learned the hard way that Clint + snow = my humiliation and suffering. Thank goodness he lives in an area with very little snow.

To make the card, I stamped the snowmen with Memento black ink onto white cardstock. I added some B01 Copic marker to the edges of the snowmen to color them as well as the edge of the snow and parts of the snowballs. Even though snow is white, the hint of blue really makes them show up better. I added some clouds to the sky using my airbrush system, a cloud template, and a blue Copic marker. As a finishing touch, I edged the snow with a Stardust pen to make the snow sparkle a bit.

I hope everyone is having a wonderful holliday. I have more things to share with you, but I should probably go help my family with dinner. They do notice when I am gone TOO long. :)

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Guest Artist

I just LOVE posting cards made by my friends. For today's card, I am posting one by my friend Harriett. She rocks! Not only is Hare a great stamper, but you wouldn't believe the things she can make with her sewing machine. Thanks to her I have embroidered towels, a fleece blanket with my initial, and a Washington Nationals bag with emblem and plastic pockets. Honestly, who can sew plastic?!

To make the card above, Hare used images by Prickly Pear. The sewing theme is just perfect considering the source. The sewing machine was black embossed onto cream paper and then trimmed around the edges. She then added some yellow marker to accent certain parts as well as added a real scrap of fabric under the needle. Perfect! Thanks Hare for letting me share your card.

I am still busy trying to get Christmas ready. I finished everything that needed to get mailed, so that is good. Now I just have to finish the rest of my shopping/gift making/baking. Wish me luck!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Color Challenge

As many of you know, I enjoy participating in Hero Arts' weekly challenges. I like them because they help me be more productive, and I find it easier to have a starting point when making cards. Sometimes they ask for themed projects or a particular style or layout. Last week the challenge was to come up with cards using colors as inspiration. Each day had a different combination to consider. I went with Monday's combination and made two thank you cards. Here is the swatch of colors from Monday:

I found it harder than expected to include all five colors. Fun, but hard. For both cards, I used one of the brand new Hero Arts sets called "CL304 A Million Thanks." I suppose I didn't need a new set to be inspired, but it never hurts.

For the card above, I stamped a saying from the HA set onto cream paper using Chestnut Colorbox ink. I surrounded it with a Sassafraslass frame which was stamped in blue Versafine ink. The flowers and leaves were stamped onto cream paper using black Memento ink and colored with Copic markers. I cut out the flower and leaves and added them to the card. I don't know if you can tell from the picture, but the flower is popped up with some foam-mount tape. The background paper is by October Afternoon. I thought it went really well with the color combination. In fact, I think it looks like it IS the color combination in stripe form.

For the second card, I stamped the flower image onto cream paper using black Memento ink and colored it with Copic markers. I then added a saying with blue Versafine, some brown brads, and some more paper from October Afternoon. I don't think it hurts to have extra thank you cards this time of year!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Two Weeks?!

Someone said to me yesterday, "I can't believe Christmas is two weeks away." I said, "no its is....oh my gosh....Christmas is two weeks away!!" I am really, really not ready. Let me check my list. Christmas cards? Nope. Presents ready? Nope. Decorations? Nope. Yikes. Of course, my friend Deedee is no help. Her package arrived from New Mexico today with Christmas presents for me as well as a birthday present. My birthday is in January. She is such a show off.

I thought I would post a card today that represents my dream of a magical being coming to get everything done while I lounge on a sofa with some sort of girlie drink. I don't think it will happen, but I haven't given up all hope. After all, I am buying a Megamillion lottery ticket tomorrow, and I think 207 million dollars could make that dream a reality.

To make the card, I used some of my pretty new Gingercake paper from Memory Box as the background. I just love their papers! I stamped the drink onto Paper Cut White Luster paper using Memento Black ink. I then colored it with Copic markers and added a layer of Diamond Glaze to the glass to make it shiny. To accentuate the ornament hanging from the glass, I added some Stardust pen to the star and a tiny clear rhinestone to the center. I finished the card with a saying that makes me smile every time I read it. Both the glass and saying are by My Favorite Things.

A post script for my last post.... my mom called and said my "Barbra" moment was incorrect. I misspelled Barbra Streisand's name. She pointed out that if I were a TRUE fan, I would know that from her "My name is Barbra" album. I stand corrected. :) I at least get some points for being able to keep up with Barbra's version of Jingle Bells? I think that shows I have listened to it a time or two.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Speaking of Airbrushing....

What a weekend! It was so busy for me. Wonderful, but busy. It started Saturday with the Holiday Open House. I would like to thank everyone who stopped by Angela's to wish us well and especially thank everyone for bringing in so much food. I am not sure exactly how much food was donated, but we ran out of room at the store to keep it all. Harriett's husband Jim was kind enough to come midday to collect the first round of donations so that we could stop tripping over everything. It was definitely more food than we expected!

I was inspired by my open house demos to show another card I made using the Copic airbrushing system. To make the card above, I took some clear acetate paper by Hambly that was pre-printed with white snowflakes and airbrushed it with blue and purple Copic markers. Because the Copics are alcohol-based, they will dry on difficult surfaces such as glass, ceramics, plastics, and acetate. Once I finished my winter looking background, I added a saying and a cute little Santa owl from Hero Arts. I think a snowflake image or embellishment might have looked better on the card, but I am still on my owl-kick, so I had to add him to the card instead. The nice thing about this card is that it was extremely fast to make.

The next part of my weekend had nothing to do with crafting, so feel free to tune out at any point!

I am still rather giddy from my Sunday night trip into DC to watch the stars arrive for the taping of the Kennedy Center Honors. It is something my friends and I have started doing, and it is just so much fun. The best part evening was that I had a Barbara moment! That's right, Barbara Streisand came over to where we were standing so that we were only a few feet apart, and we even made eye-contact. It was fantastic! We also got to see the other honorees (Pete Townshend, Roger Daltrey, Twyla Tharp, George Jones, and Morgan Freeman) as well as Clint Eastwood, Jack Black, Tom Skerritt, Aretha Franklin, Queen Latifah, Babyface, Quincy Jones, Beyonce, David Gregory, and tons of politicians (Madeline Albright, Newt, Tom Daschle, Mark Warner, and Nancy Pelosi). I think I was most excited to see Taye Diggs and Idina Menzel. He is just such a babe, and I love her voice. Plus, they are a really cute couple. Dave Grohl was fun to see not only because I like the Foo Fighters and Nirvana but also because I could imagine my friend Donna saying, "hey, he was just on Top Chef." :) I am bummed that I saw people that I knew but didn't recognize at the time. I didn't recognize Donna Karan, Joss Stone, or Chris Cornell. I am really sad that I didn't recognize Chris Cornell because I play his version of "Billy Jean" all the time. Rats! I am also sad that I only got a fleeting glance at Rob Thomas. Oh well. I guess I am just going to have to make do with my Barbara moment.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Airbrush Tutorial

As I mentioned in my last post, there is a Holiday Open House at Angela's on Saturday (tomorrow). What I failed to mention is that I will be doing a free Copic airbrush demo from 10:30am- 11:30am and again from 2-3pm. It is the same demo for both sessions, so hopefully people will be able to attend one of them. While preparing for the demo, I thought it was also an opportune time to post pictures of one of the techniques I will be showing. Posting a bunch of pictures for a tutorial really makes me appreciate people who do it on their blogs all the time. Yikes!

For today's tutorial, I used my airbrush with a brass stencil of a pear.

This is a close-up of the finished card. You would be able to get similar results with pigment inks and a makeup sponge if you didn't have an airbrush. However, the airbrush really allows you to have smooth transition of color.

I first placed the stencil onto white cardstock and held it down with stencil tape. Regular masking tape will also work if you "de-tack" it a bit on your skin or clothes before you lay it on your paper.

I sprayed the body of the pear with YR23 (Yellow Ochre). I hope you can tell from the picture that I tried to add more color to the right side and bottom of the pear. To add extra color with the airbrush, try holding the airbrush closer to the paper as well as pressing the trigger a bit harder.

Next I added YG03 (yellow green) to the leaf area as well as the body of the pear.

I added some more shading by applying YG67 (moss) to the bottom of the leaf and some E35 (Chamois) to the stem and bottom of the pear.

I could have left my pear "as-is," but I decided I wanted to stamp over the pear with some pear words. You will notice that my stamp was also in the shape of a pear, but it just happened to fit nicely over my stencil. You could use any sort of background image for this step...swirls, script, checks...whatever.

I inked my stamp with green ink and then stamped it over the stencil.

When I removed the tape, I was left with the image above.

I layered my pear onto some orange cardstock and thought it looked a bit like it was floating in air. I took it back off the cardstock and did some more airbrushing.

I airbrushed some W1 (Warm Grey 1) along the bottom of the card to ground my image. To finish the card, I simply layered it onto some green cardstock. I hope to see some of you tomorrow!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008


Hello again! I hope everyone had as wonderful holiday as I did. It was so great to have some time to spend with my mom and brother. Thanksgiving truly is a time to be grateful for our friends and family. I am also VERY grateful that my car decided to have problems AFTER I returned home and not somewhere along the highway. As much as a pain as car issues are, I realize how perfect the timing was.

Anyway, back to crafting.... today's card is one that we will be doing in Sunday's upcoming 10 in 10 card class. It is a good card to do if you still haven't made holiday cards because it takes absolutely no time to make. I stamped the holly background (Hero Arts) onto dark green cardstock using Versamark ink. I then brushed the ink with Forever Green Perfect Pearls and removed the excess with a paintbrush. Perfect Pearls add a metallic sheen to cards that I just love. To finish the card, I spelled out "NOEL" with some Hero Arts letters and layered them onto some metallic gold paper. Done!

For those of you who enjoy blogging and taking pictures of your cards, you probably know how hard it is to photograph things that are metallic. This is the best picture of the bunch I took. To show the shimmer, I put the card on my white foam board and put a small lamp between me and the card. I wrapped my arms around the lamp to take the picture. It was a bit awkward, but I think it captured a bit of the shimmer (at least towards the center of the card).

For those of you who shop at Angela's, I hope you are planning to stop by the store this Saturday for the Holiday Open House. There are all kinds of events planned, and you can read more about the day here. I primarily wanted to post a reminder because in addition to all the fun, I really hope people plan to participate in our community outreach event. We are collecting food for Southeast Washington DC Ministry's food pantry and can use your help in collecting supplies. I am still thinking about the news story I saw last week where the Redskins handed out 3000 turkeys to those in need. They do this every year, but this year it wasn't enough for everyone to leave with a turkey. This year, the number of those requesting help doubled and people started lining up at 2am in hopes of receiveing food. It just broke my heart. Anyway, here are the items that were requested that we are collecting on Saturday:

Please adhere to specific sizes & brand names if listed.
Green Beans - 28 oz
Peas - 15/16 oz
Applesauce - 16 oz
Corn - 16 oz
Fruit Cocktail - 16 oz
Pears - 16 oz
Pineapple Chunks -16 oz
Peaches - 16 oz
Elbow Macaroni - 16 oz
Jelly - 18 oz
White Rice - 16 oz
Peanut Butter - 18oz
Macaroni & Cheese - 16 oz
Sugar - 2lb box/bag
Vegetable Soup - Family Size
Campbell’s Pork ‘n’ Beans - 28 oz
Chicken Noodle or Rice Soup Family Size
Juice Concentrate (not frozen) Apple, Punch, Berry or Grape
Kool-Aid small envelopes unsweetened packs
Honeycomb Cereal - 16/20 oz. size
Fruity Peebles Cereal - 16/20 oz. size
Tuna Fish, packed in water - any size
Ravioli beef - any size
Spaghetti O’s with meatballs - any size
Beef-a-Roni - any size
Ramen Noodle Chicken flavor packs - not cups
Jell-O snack cups - any flavor
Pudding snack cups - any flavor

Hope you can help!