Saturday, May 31, 2014

I.C.A.D. 2014

Last week an online friend told me about Daisy Yellow's Index-Card-A-Day challenge.  It's very simple.  Create a piece of artwork each day on an index card.  As simple or complex as you like.  There are daily and weekly themes for those people who want/need them or you can just do your own thing.  The challenge runs June 1st - July 31st.

I've been spending a lot of time running back and forth to visit my mom due to some of her health issues and I haven't had a lot of time to spend in my studio during the week and I've missed it.  When Angie recommended this to me it sounded perfect!  I can spend 20 minutes with a Sharpie at lunch, 10 minutes with a pencil at dinner or 3 hours with every art supply I own when time allows.  My index card - my art - my rules.  There is a very well-thought-out FAQ which outlines the challenge and the reasoning behind the index cards.  I hope you'll check it out, and then join in the fun.  61 cards in 61 days.

Here are my warm-ups.  I'm ready...let's go!
Warm Up Exercise #1 - Use a puzzle

Warm Up Exercise #2 - write a Haiku
Warm Up Exercise #3 - Decorate around your name

Warm Up Exercise #4 - Create an on-the-go kit

Warm Up Exercise #5 - Create a grid
Two more days to go until the challenge begins
One more day to go

Saturday, May 24, 2014

A fun mermaid tag

Hello again!  Today I have a fun tag project for you that was made with the Mailbox Muse Mermaid kit that recently came in the mail.  If you stopped by the Mailbox Muse Facebook page last week you saw my little teaser pic…

Isn’t she beautiful?  What a fantastic inspiration!  These kits are filled with beautiful scrapbook papers, printed collage sheets, rubber stamps and lots of beautiful embellishments.  Let me walk you through the project.

I chose to work with a large tag so that the whole mermaid image could be used on a vertical project.  All of my inks on this project are from IMAGINE Crafts/Tsukineko.  I took my Nautical Blue Memento ink pad and rubbed it over the tag then heat set the ink.  After that, I used the Golden Glitz Delicata ink pad and rubbed on more ink.  This time, while the ink was really wet, I grabbed a tissue and rubbed the tag in the opposite direction of the ink to spread it out and soften the lines.  Using a stamp by Sin City Stamps from my collection, I randomly stamped some mini circles in Pistachio Memento ink.  I heat set the entire tag again.

Using the seaweed stamp that came in the kit, I stamped some light and dark images in Spiced Chai StazOn ink all around the bottom and sides of the tag and also above where the top of the mermaid image would be.  The mermaid was attached with double-sided adhesive. 

After she was in place, I stamped more seaweed to blend the edge of the image with the rest of the tag.  The seaweed was colored with Pistachio and Rhubarb Stalk Memento markers.  They are dual tip and I used the brush side of each.  The saying "Undersea Fantasy" is another stamp from the kit and is also stamped with Spiced Chai. 

With some scraps from a different tag project, I lightly rubbed the Pistachio ink pad over the paper and stamped a couple seashells in the same color as the seaweed.  This little shell also came in the kit.  I added a few lines of color with the Pistachio marker to give them a little depth. 

Two of the three shells were rounded so that they could be attached with foam squares.  You can do this by fussy cutting the image and then placing it in either a spoon or your palm, face down, and rubbing it in a circular motion.  The third shell was left flat so two of them could be slightly stacked easily.  Once all of the coloring was done and the shells were in place, I dipped the edges of the tag in the Nautical Blue ink pad to give it a framed look and the heat set just the edges. 

Some beautiful Dew Drops and a seahorse charm from the kit embellishments were added.  In my stash, I found a short string of “pearls” leftover from the Paris Mailbox Muse kit and they seemed like the perfect way to finish the project! 

As you know, during the month of May, the Altered Pages Design Team and the Eileen Hull Designs Artist Trading Block Design Team have been bringing you some pretty awesome projects every Tuesday and Thursday.  I hope you’ve been enjoying them!!  There is only one more week in May so be sure to stop over at both blogs next week for a few more fun ATBs!  Until next time…Happy Crafting!

Final Scan

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Mailbox Muse Mermaid ATCs

I've been having a little bit of fun with my latest Mailbox Muse kit.  The theme this time around is mermaids.  Love them!!  I have several stamps already in my collection and this kit came with more of them.  And not just stamps, but beautiful papers and embellishments, too!  The kit comes with a booklet of projects you can make from the kit, but I'm such a rebel that I usually just do my own thing.  Here are three ATCs that I made from the kit.

These cards are all on store-bought chipboard ATC cards.  You can make your own from card stock or playing cards, too!  You could even start with a baseball card!  The traditional size of an Artist Trading Card is 3.5" x 2.5". 

To create the background, I used the edges of my Radiant Neon stamp pads by Tsukineko.  I wanted to preserve each color and not have them blend so I used clear embossing powder and my heat tool after each color addition.  The final blue layer is not embossed.  I used a tissue and dipped it into the inkpad and then lightly rubbed color everywhere there wasn't any. 

I went through my marker collection and found that the Neon Sharpies best matched these inks so I colored the mermaid and shells with them.  The mermaid came on a sheet of black and white images in the kit and the word summer comes from the (#1273) June ATC collage sheet from Altered Pages.

The blue background is Tim Holtz Distress Paint.  The bottle comes with a dauber top and I just rubbed paint all over the card.  When it was completely dry, I sprayed it with bronze irRESISTible texture spray and then stamped a large diamond grid using my new favorite color ink, Delicata Golden Glitz by Tsukineko.  The edges were dipped in Memento Luxe Pistachio ink and embossed with clear powder.

The starfish and clam shell die-cuts and the delicate little mermaid is from the sheet of color images all provided in the kit.  The little circle embellishments are shimmery and were given to me for another project but they matched the card beautifully and ended up here.

Finally, this little beauty was also on the sheet of color images.  The background is stamped with StazOn and Brilliance inks by Tsukineko and has clear Stickles on the waves. 

So this is what I've been playing with this week.  How about you? 

Friday, May 9, 2014

Howdy there!

Hi everyone.  I’ve got a cowboy card to share with you.  I love cowboys.  I have many stamps, papers & embellishments in the western theme and I make cards with them all the time.  I’m not sure where this love comes from since I’m a city girl through and through! 
When I saw the Old West collage at Altered Pages I just fell in love with this image!  A lot of times I print my own images on the inkjet printer and it is just fine, but I knew I was going to cover this one in glue from the moment I saw it!  So, I needed this image printed on a laser printer.  If you don't have access to one then I suggest you order it directly from Altered Pages.  The images are laser printed on quality card stock and you will have no fear of them smearing when you use liquid mediums.
I left the image its original rectangle shape because I didn’t want to lose any of that beautiful landscape.  With a fine paint brush, I put US Art Quest Perfect Paper Adhesive (PPA) matte everywhere except the horse and rider.  I had to work quickly because it was a very light coating.  Then I sprinkled fairy dust glitter over the image and shook off the excess.

Card stock for the card & two panels were chosen in colors to accent the picture.  The card itself and photo panel are gold textured card stock.  The large panel is confetti burnt sienna.  That just means it has small flecks of other colors running through it.  I used a Darice embossing folder to give the brown panel some texture and used Colorbox Peacock to give it a little more dimension.  I chose the peacock color because it matches the sky.

The dark brown mini-edge border from Bazzill was laced with yellow craft string, which was glued to the back side at each end.  The entire edge was glued to the card at the bottom of the panel.  After that was dry I added the cowboy image centered vertically between the top edge of the panel and the top of the brown strip.  He is adhered with foam squares.

That left me plenty of room for a sentiment along the open edge.  I have no idea yet who is getting this card (or why) so I wanted a generic saying.  Using the same gold paper as the card, I deckle cut 1” squares and then touched them up with Colorbox Burnt Sienna and Dark Brown inks.  The letters were also stamped in the brown ink.  H-W-Y are glued down and O-D are adhered with foam squares.

Normally, I try to keep the girly embellishments off my masculine cards.  But these are not feminine little flowers…they’re brown not pink!!  The wonderful little flowers are from Michael’s dollar bin last summer.  I rubbed them with a couple of Colorbox cat’s eye pads and then glued them to the bottom corner.

I can’t believe I made a masculine card with glitter and flowers!  Who would have thought??  

Don't forget to see this one and other projects over at the Altered Pages Artsociates blog!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Memory Box part two

Greetings!  I'm back with another quick post.  Last year I showed a memory box for my friend Mary Ann's retirement party.  This spring I was asked to make another set.  The box and pattern were different but the meaning was the help make a memorable keepsake for a coworker who will be missed.  This set was made for my friend (Hi Stacey) to give to her friend.  I love decoupage with napkins.  It's very relaxing and I love watching the pattern emerge!  These beautiful pink napkins were purchased at Party City.
This box started out dark brown with words all over it.
Washi Tape covers the rough napkin edges.
Inside the lid and the back of the mini cover were lined with pink card stock to cover the rough edges.
Hole cut in the top so people can drop in their cards.
A mini cover can be attached with foam tape to create a solid lid after the party.
Several different designs of butterflies were stamped on blank cards.
Sign to encourage everyone to offer their own thoughts and congratulations.

Full set with coordinating greeting card.
Retirement greeting card
Make my day and drop me a note! Until next time...HAPPY CRAFTING!

This game cube is more fun than a barrel of monkeys

During the month of May join the Altered Pages Design Team as we cross promote Eileen Hull Designs Sizzix Artist Trading Block's.  The designers will be posting their ideas for ATBs every Tuesday and Thursday. Be sure to stop by for a month of inspiration.  And today, it’s my turn! 

Here it is...just waiting for inspiration!
And what did I make with my 3” box?  A game cube!  Sorry, Nintendo, but this one doesn’t need any wires.  AlteredPages has a collage sheet of vintage game boards and I have a fondness for travel games and game key chains…which means I have a lot of tiny game pieces!

The checkerboard & bingo board games were printed about 15% larger than their normal size and a couple of them were trimmed down a bit.  I started by using the primary colors of Tim Holtz distress paints around the edge of each square because they are the colors used in most children’s games.  The edges of each board was daubed with the same color as its square.  Then, it was time to embellish!

I used mini playing cards, tiny game pieces and some Scrabble tile stickers.  One of my favorite game key chains is the old Barrel of Monkeys.  I cut off the tab that held the keychain.  The barrel was a very bright neon lime green.  I felt it was just too bright to go with the old style game boards.  I wanted it to fit in more with the vintage feel so I aged it a little bit with grey paint.
Small dominos were used for the feet of the box.  These were distressed with Tim Holtz Vintage Photo ink and glued together in pairs in an L-shape.
Once all of the pieces were complete I adhered all of the game pieces to the completed box.  Putting it together was so easy!  Double-sided tape on the tabs is all it took!  I left the top flap open because the barrel and other toys need to stand on the shelf. 
To create the shelf inside the box I used a square of florist foam and another game board from the collage sheet. 

I hope you enjoyed my project.  Visit the Altered Pages and The Artists on the Block blogs for more fun with these die-cut boxes.  And visit me here on my own blog, Robin’s Birdhouse!

I didn't have an mini checkers so I used Dew Drops from The Robin's Nest.

 Want to make my day?  Leave a comment below and let me know what you think.  Until next time, Happy Crafting!