PagesPat's Ponderings

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Mom's 80th Birthday Party-palooza!

This year my mo turns 80!  Actually at the end of this week! Now some people would want a big party with lots of friends and family, balloons, decorations, presents, cake.  But at 80, sometimes it's nicer to run away from home, and that's what my mo and sisters and I are doing this weekend--running away!
But presents and surprises will abound, and I have been super busy making toppers for a number of goodie bags filled with favorite treats.  Each baggie will have 80 pieces of each item, like caramel popcorn, m&m's, pistacchios, etc.

Most of the toppers showcase HouseMouse images, but there are a couple other stamp companies used as well.  My sisters and I have probably 20 bags of goodies, all filled with 80 pieces of something, and I'll be stapling them all to the toppers in the car ride up to Port Washington this weekend.

There's a new Micro Brewery/restaurant there and we'll have the birthday dinner and then whip out the gigantic gift bag filled with these fun creations.  Oh, and cake, too! LOL

So, my lesson today, crafters, is to try something new!  You never know when inspiration will hit, and you need to be ready to grab it by the horns and ride it into the sunset!!
Have fun!!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Spring Is Around the Corner

It's hard to imagine, what with the 3 foot high snow banks surrounding us in Chicago, but it IS March, and according to the calendar, Spring is just around the corner.  March certainly came in like alion, so it should hopefully go out like a lamb with warmer weather and a little sunshine.

Meanwhile, other parts of the world are enjoying the timid beginnings of Spring, so I wanted to make a card in celebration.  The Outlawz Challenge for Friday is Spring or Easter, using any kind of alcohol-based coloring.  I pulled out my Copics and here he is!

I used a March QKD release from Artist Terrell Dorfeo called Dragon Riders.  I must say this little guy is adorable, and he doesn't complain when I color him pink and orange.  I used a negative cut of hot pink cardstock to frame my image.  I also used a leftover piece of K & Co Border, using the back of it to color the coordinating green (YG03) for my card.

For some more Springtime inspiration, check out the QKD Shop!  For your chance in the Outlawz Friday Copic Challenge, click HERE!

Monday, March 25, 2013

80 Years Young

When my dad proposed to my mom, he said, "Marry me and you'll always be young."  It was a play on words, since his last name was young (the German spelling, Jung).  She accepted, and here I am, showing off a card I made for her birthday.  She is 80 years young this week!!

My mom has the best genes!  Her mom is still alive at 102!  She (her mom) is in her own home, has trouble with her eyes and hearing, but the doctor this month pronounced her "healthy as a horse." Hopefully I inherited some of those genes!

I know my mom did.  She looks fantastic for her age, so I decided to make a funny card for her.  She in no way looks anything like Gramma Knitting, a Squigglefly digi image from artist Gemma Mortlock.  In fact, she still bowls, takes cruises and bus trips, and leads an active life.  So imagine her surprise when she reads the front of my easel card!  The sentiment reads, "Mom, on your birthday I wanted to make a truly personal card, but you're just not at this point in your life..."

 Of course, when she opens it, she'll see the second image I used, a Squigglefly digi called Badonkadonk.  The sentiment here reads, "...then again, you're not exactly at this stage of your life anyway."

So, mom, have a wonderful birthday--you look awesome whatever your age!

Meanwhile, crafters, there's a new Squigglefly Challenge on the blog, and it's ANYTHING GOES!!  That's right, use a Squigglefly image and let your creativity soar.  One random winner will win free digi's!!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Far Out!!

Groovy baby, far out, Right on, Let’s book, what a fox, Bummer, Doobie, Funky, Trippin’, take a Chill pill...
The time was the seventies, the scene was where it was at,.  Bad was good, a fox was sexy, and bookin was getting out of there.
Queen Kat Designs released some groovy, funky, far out stamps, one of which blew my mind, it was like, psychedelic.  It's called Patches the Hippie Chick and it was designed by the grooviest of designers, Terrell Dorfeo.
The stamp brought out some very funny but cool memories of my high school years (yes, I am that old, just chill).  There was a head shop, I mean a music store, that sold patches specifically to cover your jeans, didn't matter if there were a rip or hole or tear, you sewed them on to look cool.  There was a song called Patches that came out in 1970 by singer Clarence Carter, and I used to listen to it ALL the time.
So this little cutie and I have a connection, and I thought I would make her a nice card to decorate.  I might just send it to one of my high school friends with whom I am still in touch.  Bet she'd get a kick out of it!!
For those of you who understand what I'm saying, hope you enjoyed the trip down memory lane.  Check out those elephant bells!! LOL

Monday, March 18, 2013

Song-Inspired Card for Squigglefly Challenge

I made a card today for this week's Squigglefly challenge, which is to make something using a Squigglefly digi image and inspired by a song.  The digi image I used is by artist Cheryl Alger and it's called "Pencil Girl".  It's a March release.
So my card comes with a story (as most of my projects do).  One of the dangers of the Internet is that you may communicate with people who are not what they say they are.  Ever watch a reality show on MTV called Catfish?  This guy takes people who have met and "fallen in love" with people they met only through the Internet  Some people have turned out to be the other gender, sexually-oriented in the opposite direction, married, or worse predators.
So, what if we never got a chance to see the songwriters who have penned those amazing songs?  What if, like the Internet (or adult entertainment phone call operators), they were totally opposite what we thing they are?
And here is where rerality turns to fantasy, because we all know who Barry Manilow is, or have seen his photo, or have (several of) his albums/cd's.  Right?
So, when you here the song "I Write The Songs", it can't possibly be the author in the card, holding her pencil proudly, music dripping from the pointy tip.  But, if you think about it, there are song writers out there whose work is sung by others, and we never get to see the authors.  So maybe my idea isn't too fantastical!
Either way, I was inspired by this image and Barry Manilow's hit "I Write The Songs" to make this card for the Squigglefly challenge this week.
I used some gorgeous patterned paper that I picked up on clearance at Michael's (I know, but I couldn't pass it up!) called Collections "Bird Page Glitter".  I colored my image on glossy paper with Copics and framed it with brown cardstock.  I inked the edges of my card base, as well as used the ink pad to blot/distress the white space of my image.  After adding a diecut flourish and adding pearls to the ends of a few tendrils (I colored the pearls with E37 Copic to coordiinate), I added the tiny musical notes, causing them to drip from the pencil's end and into the sheet music paper.
I hope you like my card--and Cheryl's digi "Pencil Girl".  You can find it and all her images at the Squigglefly store.  Go on and take a look, grab a freebie and join in the challenge for your chance to win free digi's!
Want more inspiration and a freebie??  Like Squigglefly on Facebook and when they reach 300 (only 16 more to go) they'll release a new digi just for their fans!!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Consumed by Canvas

Time to show off another canvas!  I am absolutely in love with mixed media canvas art, and manage to spend time on projects about once a week.  I have to wait until inspiration strikes, though.  The last canvas I created just didn't have that spark that drove me.  I had just wanted to create something.
Well, I sparked today, and I love what I created!  The background is a mix of paint, patterned tissue paper and ink.  The focus is a black & white photo of a woman in two halves.  The top half is kind of a glamorous 50's look, while the bottom is an Angelina Jolie-kickin'-ass kind of look. Embellishments include metal charms, paper doilies, ribbon roses, stamped ink, lace and paper, and a feather (fast becoming my signature embellishment).
All women have both glamour as well as toughness inside them.  The secret is to find your own balance, the one that makes you happy.  I'm still searching for mine, but the journey is part of the fun!  Enjoy your journey, and happy crafting!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Sing Your Own Song

Thought I would try another mixed media canvas art.  This is a 6x6 on which I used patterned paper from the Recollections line called Bird Page Glitter, some acrylic paint, CTMH stamps, and chipboard letters.

I added a chipboard bird to bring home the message, along with some musical notes, jewels, trim and a feather.

I am still finding my way through this world of mixed media.  The first time I photographed my canvas for my blog, I noticed a decided lack of color and that the phrase "Sing Your Own Song" was lost on the canvas.

So, I took my "finished" piece of art and tweaked it, giving it a little more color and pulling the letters out toward the eye.  There was no red in my first attempt, and I think that color helps my piece.  I still think the letters are too big for this work, but I can't alter that--they are stuck on there for good and all!

But I say, live and learn.  Art is a process, just like life, and you take from it what you can, and you give to it what you are able, and in the end there is a balance of sorts.  Hope your day, as well as your art, brings balance to you, too!  Happy crafting!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Bunny Cupcake Heralds Spring

Today I have a Spring digi image from Meljen's Designs called Bunny Cupcake.  This week on the blog their challenge is to use a Meljens image and a sketch.
 After coloring my image with Copics, I tore it and popped it onto the card base after adhering a strip of patterned paper across the bottom.  I added a butterfly border from K & Co. on the left side, and used a single butterfly from the leftover piece to embellish above the image.  My sentiment came from a Michael's dollar bin acrylic set, stamped with CTMH ink and distressed with coordinating ink..
I like my card's background.  I used a printed napkin and some matte medium to give it a textured feel to it. I tore some of the edges off and then inked them to distress a little.
Isn't that bunny Cupcake too cute?!  You can get her and a bunch of Spring digi's at Meljen"s Designs.  Don't forget to play in the challenge, too!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Embrace Imperfection

It's time to show off a new card using my stash of papers (self-admitted paper-holic here)!  Today I made a birthday card for my daughter using a QKD stamp from  Coriander Shea Detwiler called Dragon Riders.  My daughter's birthday isn't until the summer, but when she saw this card, she wanted me to save it for her!
The reason it's called Dragon Riders is because of the tiny butterflies sitting atop our little friend.  I think that's a very clever name for this image.  I used a piece of leftover DCWV paper from the Once Upon a Time stack and perched him on top of a bit of ribbon.  Once I added the larger butterflies to the background, I used white gel pen and added a few more circles/bubbles/fireflies to the whole scene.  A few white heart-shaped brads and my card was almost complete.  I just needed a message, and I chose a Tim Holtz Idea-ology charm that reads, "Embrace imperfection".
SO, if you could, would you take a ride on a dragom?  I would, in a heartbeat.  Maybe I should put it on my bucket list.  it's no more fanciful than some of the things I've already listed there! LOL
Go check out all the cool and cute stamps that Coriander Shea has for you to play with at the store.  And let your creativity take flight!!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Live and Learn with a Squigglefly Challenge

Today I made a Spring card for the Squigglefly Challenge Blog, whose theme is SPRING!!  I used a new March release called "Over An Egg" by artist Fawn Palmer.  I love the image, but I tried a different coloring technique and I don't like it, so you'll probably see more than one card using this delightful Spring digi very soon.
I mistakenly put photo paper in my printer instead of cardstock, then thought I would still color and use it to try something different.  But the alcohol inks don't blend on the glossy texture, and it can smudge unless you wait longer than I am used to for cutting and handling purposes.
But the overall design of the card still rocks it I think.  I used a small piece of patterned paper for my inspiration, then added coordinating cardstock to frame the image and the pp.  The trim, rosettes and parls are all Michael's clearance items that I snagged for 50 cents a bag.  The black stitching is part of the pattern on the paper, and I punched the scallop design at the bottom with my CM punch system.
I think Robin's Egg Blue is my fave Spring color!  What's yours?
Whatever it is, get over to the Squigglefly Challenge Blog for your chance to win free digi's, and there are so many new ones from which to choose!!! If you don't have any Squigglefly digi images, pick up some FREEBIES.  Have fun, and happy crafting!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Forever Young

I have graduated from small canvas art pieces using House Mouse images exclusively, to larger canvas using, well, whatever I feel like using.  Today I felt like using a photo of Loretta Young, a popular movie star from the 1930's and 40's.  She played with leading men like Clark Gable, Cary Grant, Spencer Tracy and Tyrone Powers.  They were all legends in that golden age of Hollywood.  My favorite movies include The Bishop's Wife (the original) with Cary Grant, and Mother Was a Freshman, co-starring a grown up Shirley Temple ( and no I am NOT 100 years old, there used to be things called reruns on TV).

I made a play with words for the theme of my canvas, using her last name and the lyrics from Bob Dylan's song to come up with "Forever Young."  I wanted to keep the vintage look to the canvas using only what was in my stash.  First I painted the canvas with matte medium and a very light teal colored paint to cover the original picture someone had already painted (the canvas came from Goodwill for 99 cents).

Next came torn tissue papers and vintage-printed napkins.  Once the background was finished, I adhered Loretta with Mod Podge after giving her eyes, hair and lips a little color with Copics.  I added a string of pearls to dress  her up a little.

After printing the lyrics to Dylan's song onto plain copy paper, I decided not to use the whole song--it would cover my hard-earned background--so I tore off one verse from the song, something a little inspirational, something that maybe a mom would hang in her daughter's room.  It reads, "May God bless and keep you always, May your wishes all come true, May you always do for others and let others do for you.  May you build a ladder to the stars and climb on every rung, May you stay forever young, forever young..."  For the rest of the lyrics, check them out HERE.

After using assorted chipboard letters to blot paint around the words Forever Young, I illustrated around them with paint and Copic, using vintage buttons for the letter "O" in both words.  A stamped image from Queen Kat Designs, some chipboard stickers and a bit of leftover felt and ribbon borders finished off the major embellishing on my canvas.  I again used white arylic paint to bring out some of the more subtle parts of my canvas.

I wish I could show you a time-lapse YouTube video of how I create, but:
1.  I don't now how to edit the video to time lapse, and
2.  I take my sweet time and change my mind often enough for it to be a biog fat pain in the butt.

All I know is if you haven't tried it, or are getting bored with what you're doing now, find yourself a small canvas and some bottles of acrylic paint and have some fun.  Whether the medium is for you or not, you will come out of it feeling more relaxed and maybe a little surprised at what may be revealed to you!
And whatever you do, keep crafting!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

March New Releases from QKD

It's March, and with a new month comes new releases from QKD!  One of them is called "Patches the Hippie Girl" by artist Terrell Dorfeo.  Patches looks like she is high on life, and everything is groovy, baby!!
I used mixed media to make this card.  I am very much into mixed media right now, and wondered how paint, matte medium and designer napkins would look on a card.  I showed my daughter, who is in her third year of art in high school.  She said she liked it because it was "different".  The texture is very different, and even though the finish is supposed to be matte, it has a bit of a shine to it.  What do you think?
I added a few layers of designer tie-dye napkin first, removing the thin backing first and then tearing the bottom for a rough look.  I colored my image with Copics, then positioned it on the card with Pop Dots for added dimension.  I stamped the sentiment "groovy" with an alpha set and colored in the letters with black Copic and white acrylic paint.
To frame Patches, I drew a peace sign, then placed "flower power" embellies around her.  I added a VW Beetle button, and finished off my card with some white acrylic painted dots and white inked edges to lighten it up.
I had fun trying this technique on a new venue, and would do it again.  Have you tried mixed media yet?  It is "far out, dude"!!  
Meanwhile, check out more of the Queen's new releases at the shoppe!

Monday, March 4, 2013

Just a Little Hello from Cheryl Alger

It's time for new releases from Squigglefly Designs!  I made a card using a digi image from Squigglefly artist Cheryl Alger called "Just a Little Hello".  Isn't she the cutest thing??  And just in time for this week's challenge, which is to use ribbon in any way other than a bow!
I used my bit of ribbon in two places, one being a sort of border on the bottom of my card, but the best is used to make a banner.  I found the tutorial for this (she uses construction paper) at Lily's Blog: 
I colored my image using a mix of Copic and Spectrum Noir markers and framed it onto red cardstock.  The background patterned paper is from paper studio and has the loveliest butterflies on it.
I have to apologize for her bad hair day.  In the middle of coloring it, my marker ran out of ink and I had to rub every last drop onto her scalp to finish it!!  I guess I get no tip from her!! LOL
If you like "Just a Little Hello", you will love all the new March releases that Squigglefly has out.  Want more incentive?  Throughout the month of March you can save 15% by using the code spring15 at Squigglefly.
Why are you still here?  Go, play with Squigglefly's freebies!  Buy your faves at 15% off!  Post a pic in the challenge for your chance to win!  Get crafting, and have FUN!!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

A Surprise for a Very Good Friend

It took special planning, but I pulled off a surprise for a very good friend, one with whom I have shared spiritual and health issues, prayers, and the ability to vent (on both sides) -- and whom I have never met face-to-face!
I am talking about Linda, owner and mod on Your Scrapbook Place Yahoo Group and soul sister.
When she mentioned that her sis-in-law had passed away and the services were in Dodgeville, I Googled the town, made arrangements, and FB'd  her daughter, Becky, to let her know my plans and to keep it secret from her mom.
Here we are (above) together in the gazebo part of her green house (I would liken it to a lighthouse tower).  Bill and I were very impressed with the house and its energy-saving, energy-efficient, home.  Verdon took Bill out to the shed to show him his "toys", while I toured Linda's craft room and. as you can see below, made friends with Nikko.
Although it was a sad event that finally got us together, we put a positive spin on the day by meeting and talking and having the best visit ever.  Thanks to Becky who kept the secret so well, we almost didn't get to meet, as Linda was thinking of skipping the funeral), and to Shelley, both of whom we met at breakfast, discovering we were staying at the same hotel!!  Great seeing both of you, and so sorry for your loss.