PagesPat's Ponderings

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

New Beginnings

I got a chance to play with my water colors today, and I had fun! I found a good deal on liquid water colors so my new painting has vibrant colors. I mixed my water colors with stickers, stamping and acrylic paint, so I guess you would call this a mixed media project, but I'm happy with how my girl turned out. Most of my water colors have been background pieces, or splotches on which I drew outlines with black ink to give the colors focus. This is the first time I painted "a picture" with water colors.
But like the title of my piece, every day is a new beginning, and I thi9nk I'll begin tomorrow with some more painting!!
Happy crafting, everyone!

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Swing-g-g, It's Your Birthday!

I just checked my calendar and there are a few birthdays coming up, all guys. So I decided to get a head start with making my cards today. I colored up a Squigglefly digi image called "Golf Day." The sentiment is called "It's A Miracle" and I added some blue ink from my Copics as well.
I tried to make a "manly" card, which is hard for me because I love using flowers and swirls and bows, etc. Here, I kept myself at bay with a few black brads and some white clips. The patterned papers are from CTMH.
I discovered a cool challenge blog called Open-Minded Crafting and their theme this month is Sports & Activities. Come on and play with me!

Monday, April 28, 2014

Sneak Peek at New Squigglefly Images

Lucky me, lucky you! I got to play with an upcoming release from Squigglefly and I want you to see it NOW.  It is a cute image called "Say Cheese Please" by artist Cheryl Grant Alger and will be released in May.
This week's challenge over at the Squigglefly Challenge Blog asks for you Mother's Day cards using a Squigglefly image.  Since I make cards for my mom, MIL, gram, my kids' godmothers and the mothers of my grandchildren, I have plenty to make in the next two weeks! This is the perfect challenge for me to get them finished and sent out!
I found this fun patterned paper in my stash. It's from CTMH and is double-sided.  I love the bright colors and chevron stripes seem to be hot at this time. My images are colored with Copics and given a hint of highlighting with my white gel pen. I used this pen to handwrite my sentiment and doodle a few hearts to embellish.  A couple of butterfly charms complete my card.
Don't forget to use a Squigglefly image in this challenge so that you are in the running for free digis!  Can't wait for this new image?  Check out all kinds of images from Cheryl and other talented artists at the STORE.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

A Mother's Day Card

It's about that time of the year to start thinking about mothers in general, and my mom in particular. I am lucky to have my mother (age 81), my grandmother (age 103) and my mother-in-law (age 87) still kicking around. While I don't get to see my MIL often as she lives out of state, my gram lives in her own house in the neighboring town, and my mom lives a few blocks away. In fact, my sisters, mom and I just returned from a weekend getaway last weekend! Besides my own mothers, my kids have godmothers to whom they give cards.  Then there are my DIL and my youngest granddaughter's mommy. So this is another busy holiday for which I make cards.
So today I have started my "stash" of cards for next month by coloring up a pretty little image from Art By Miran called "A Rainy Day." I started with an embossed card face, then colored the image. I made a mistake with her hair, adding too much black ink. Try as I might I couldn't get it to face the way I wanted, so I covered my mistake with Stickles, creating a headband for her hair. I again highlighted my coloring with white gel pen. I used Stickles to make the raindrops shimmer.
The sequin flowers are from my stash of leftovers, as well as the stamped sentiment, diecut border and flower. I adhered white card stock to the inside of the card so that I could write a nice note of love to one of the mothers on my list. One down...LOL
Meanwhile, I'm going to add this card to my entries for the Art By Miran Challenge blog. Their theme is Anything Goes, so Go check them out!

Friday, April 25, 2014

Be Calm and Read On

You can't miss them. Those little posters that read "Keep calm and..."
They're all over Facebook and Pinterest and now they're on my blog!

I made a purse album for my teen daughter. She is in college, looking for a job and scholarships, and is dealing with a lot of issues. She does get anxious easily, so I made her a little Keep Calm album to flip through when she gets stressed or just plain needs a laugh.

I surfed around Pinterest, pulling these little tidbits of fun and then printing them on cardstock. Before I put them together on a jump ring, I laminated them so it would last.

She's going to keep it in her overstuffed backpack, so I had to keep the embellishments down to the bare minimum--a bow tied with two pieces of organza ribbon.

She loves it.  How do I know?  She gave me a big hug!! Now that's the kind of payment I like when I create!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Doing What She Loves

My grand daughter is in her second year of ice skating lessons. She loves them, and what ever she loves she excels in. She grew up learning to love books, and her reading surpasses her grade level expectations (skipping right past kindergarten). She loves to hula hoop and she can twist with the best of them.
She sees what she wants and works at getting it. I hope she never loses that zest for life and learning new things. She's one of my favorite crafting buddies, too!
So, I made a card today for my Bella. I used an image from Art By Miran called Skating Girl and colored her with my trusty Copics, adding some added dimension with white gel pen. I fussy-cut her out (one of my signature techniques), leaving the ice on which she skates.
The background is actually a watercolor painting my granddaughter created a couple weeks ago. I hope she recognizes it and gets a kick out of my use of her art with my own!
The patterned paper is CTMH and I used leftover lace and ribbon. I finished off my card witha Tim Holtz Idea-ology metal tag that reads: "The journey awakens the soul."
The Art By Miran challenge blog has an Anything Goes theme this month, so you have no excuses to get on over there and play. And as always, crafters, have FUN!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

QKD Has New Releases Just in Time for Spring

Did you attend the new release party at Queen Kat Designs on Facebook?  I was one of the lucky commentators to score a free QKD digi of this image.  It's called Lizzy Love #25 by artist Lizzy Love!  How cool is that?! So this is what I did with my new digi.
I colored her with Copics. Her original look sports a shamrock headband, but I decided to place flower sequins on the shamrocks for a pure spring look.  Then I distressed the edges and framed her with cardstock before adding her to an embossed and sanded card face.
I embellished with sparkling buttons, circle borders and some jute.  My sentiment is from a K&Co sticker sheet. I finished off my card with white gel pen lines around the perimeter of the card and boxing around my sentiment.
I don't know about you but I am SO ready for Spring. After spending Spring break in Seattle, where Spring is blossoming in the greenest greens and the boldest colors, it was so difficult to return to the last remnants of mucky snow and brown brown grass in Chicago. Ugh!
So I'm daring Mother Nature to catch up with my crafting by washing her hands of winter and welcoming Spring in all its beauty! Come on, Mom, let's see some sunshine and blooms and greenery!!  Are you with me, crafters?!
We would certainly love to see some cards and projects using QKD stamps and digis.  Please share them with us on Facebook!!  You never know when another contest will pop up!  besides, you can get some very awesome inspiration there.
Like what you see?  Stop by the Shop and have fun!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Be at Peace with Yourself

I have another project today for this month's theme of PEACE over at the Path of Positivity Challenge blog. It is an art journal page with a watercolor background and another beautiful digi image from Sparkle N Sprinkle. The image is called Winter Cardinal.
After my background dried (be kind, I am a beginner in water colors), I colored Winter Cardinal with Copics and sprinkled fine glitter on the pine needles. Then I fussy-cut (one of my fave techniques) the image and popped it onto my background.  The sentiment is from Decosse's Dynamite Digis, and when you play in the Path of Positivity challenges each month, you'll get a free sentiment just for playing!! 
I used olive branch stickers, adhesive-backed jewels and a shaped button to embellish and my page is finished.

Life is way too short to spend another day at war with yourself.  I love this quote, because there aren’t that many people who are at PEACE with themselves.  Whether you feel too fat, too skinny, not smart enough, not enough friends in your life, too loud, too quiet, it is a virtual war zone within your soul.
Society doesn’t help much with magazines telling us how we can “improve” on our looks, our style, our behaviors.  People are quick to criticize but slow to compliment.  No wonder our teens are growing up with low self-esteem and body image problems!
It’s time to “give PEACE a chance” in tiny ways so that they slowly but surely build on each other like a snowball rolling downhill.
Start making PEACE with yourself:
  If your weight bothers you, list all the things you can do with the body you own, right now, without changing a thing!  Are you strong, are you flexible, do your children, grandchildren, husband, love to cuddle with you? Have those you love and love you actually complained to you about your being over or under weight?
  If it’s confidence you lack, list your talents and strengths, without changing a thing! We are our own harshest critics.  Listen to your loved ones; they know your value better than you do yourself.
  If it’s your past, list the good experiences you have had and the lessons you learned from the bad, because you can’t change your past!  You’ll discover that everything you said and did, everyone you met and loved, everywhere you’ve been, has combined to make you the marvelous person that you are today.
Stop declaring war on your body, your looks, your mind, your career, your location!   Make PEACE with what has happened already.  If you’re still not happy, then rejoice that you are still alive.  That means you have time to change if you wish it:
 Work out to become stronger, healthier, beef up, slim down.
 Learn new things, make new friends, experiment and explore, so that who you see is as strong as who others see.
 Sometimes I regret joining the Army right after high school.  However, if I hadn’t, I would never have met my husband of 37 years, had the son and daughter I cherish, met my daughter-in-law and gained 4 more grandchildren to the one I had already fell in love with.  When I think of the many crossroads in my life where I took the wrong turn, I see now that I only lost the battles and that I had won the war. 
So Make PEACE, not war…Starting with yourself, as all good things should begin!

Don't forget to link up your post/project with the Path of Positivity before May 4! We welcome anyone who would like to share their positive or uplifting take on this theme.

Butterfly Takeover

This week the challenge over at Squigglefly is to use butterflies on your project--in the image, your papers, your shape--anywhere! I decided to make a purse prayer journal for my girlfriend. It measures about 3x4 inches, has a velcro closure and is perfect for those down times, those sometimes anxious times, like waiting at the doctor's office for test results, before or after Mass in church, or even running late for work but waiting on a long, l-o-n-g freight train.
I used Pamela Lehto's artwork entitled "Even Today," a Squigglefly April release. I die-cut the image with my Epic Six and Nestabilities die. I tried to fold in the middle and it mussed up a little, but I don't think she'll mind. I embellished with butterflies and jewels.
I love the versatility of Squigglefly digital images. I've used them on tiny 3x3 cards as well as on 12x12 layouts and canvas. I've printed in different sizes, flipped it to their mirror image, and printed on patterned papers and transparencies. All with using just Microsoft Picture Manager--no fancy photo editing software!
So now that you know how easy peasy it is to use digis, check out the Squigglefly store and pick out your favorites. Then come play with us at this week's butterfly challenge!!
Other challenges I am entering:
Open-Minded Crafting Challenge Blog - Easter or Pastels

Friday, April 18, 2014

Anything Goes at Art By Miran

I discovered a new challenge blog called Art By Miran and I am in love with her digital images. The card I made today uses "A Rainy Day." Isn't she gorgeous?!
I colored her with my trusty Copics, then added dimension with white gel pen and CTMH Liquid Glass. I embellished with sequins, handmade flowers and tucked a paper doily behind my framed image.
The patterned paper is double sided from CTMH.
Check out the inspiration cards over at Art By Miran challenge blog. If you fall in love with her images like I did, you can purchase them at her Etsy Shop!
And as always, happy crafting!

Published Using Squigglefly Image

Doing the happy dance in my craft room! I was asked by Holly Young of Squigglefly to make a masculine card for the upcoming issue in Simply Cards and Papercraft Magazine. My card is in issue #123 (page 54) which will be out in the newsstands on April 24th, 2014 in the UK (I don't know about in the US).
Anyway I made a step card using Squigglefly digi image Recycle Guy by talented artist Fawn Palmer. The image is a new April release and available HERE.

I separated the sentiment that comes with the image into three parts for the three "faces" of my card. Coloring my image with Copics, I fussy-cut him and popped him onto patterned paper. Embellishments include Skittles, arrow brad, ribbon bow and ink. This kind of card lets the recipient stand it up on desk or craft table, and has a lot of dimension.
This is my first publication in a printed magazine, and I feel so honored and blessed to be a DT member for Squigglefly. They have really pushed my creative buttons and helped me grow in my crafting and art. So, a big THANK YOU to Holly Young and all the talented artists whose digi images I adore!!
I would love to see some of your projects using Squigglefly images. This week the challenge at Squigglefly Challenge Blog is to use BUTTERFLIES. Now, my card doesn't show butterflies, but if you use an SQ image and butterflies, you have a chance to win free digi's!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Christmas Robin Decorates Another Challenge Card

Today I'm showing off my Christmas card for the month of April. I'm playing in the Digi Stamps 4 Joy monthly Christmas Card Challenge. Every time you play in the challenge, you get a free digi for the next month!!  It's a win-win partnership--you win a free dgii and you win at beating the clock to get all your cards made for next Christmas!
For this month's card, I used the DS4J digi called Christmas Robin and colored it with Copics. I colored it blue, thinking of the bluebird of happiness.  Christmas makes me happy, seeing the family gathered around the table together, laughing and sharing food, and watching the grandkids squirm with anticipation of presents to unwrap and sopngs to sing.
The patterned paper is from DCWV, the border from K & Co and the JOY sticker from the Dollar Tree. And that makes two cards to add to my collection for the holidays!!
Come play with your holiday craft supplies and link it up with the DS4J Christmas Card Monthly Challenge!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014


I decided to try my hand at another water color.  I have learned to use more color, to brush on some water so that the paint spread, and to press the paper between books once dry so that it will stay flat. And the most important thing I learned is that I can add dimension, focus and structure with pen and ink.

While the paint was still drying, I already saw the poppies on the page. It took me almost two weeks to gether my courage to draw on my painting, but once started, I used the black and white ink pens to define each poppy.  Then I added some Copic coloring to add depth.

I am still learning how the water colors swirls, blots, drip and pool on my paper, but I think I am making headway.  At least enough to buy some heavyweight watercolor paper and to use bigger brushes! Art, after all, is a  journey of self-discovery. I am but a hiker on a colorful new path.

Where is your art taking you?

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Spring Parade Showcasing Queen Kat Designs

Hip hip hooray, celebrate the day--Spring weather has finally arrived!  And about time too!

So to celebrate, I have created a parade on my card today with an QKD April release called Happy Spring Chick by artist Jacquelynne Steves.
I printed my digi image at two different sizes to make it look like a mother hen and her chicks. I colored my images with Copics and framed it with cardstock. I used patterned papers from Marcella by K "Fiesta Birthday paper pack (including the circles used as embellishments). I also embellished with jeweled butterflies from Recollections and a paper-crafted butterfly from my leftover stash.
"Happy Spring Chick" is available in the QKD Shop, along with many other fabulous images and rubber stamps.  Good news: rubber stamps are also available already cling-mounted!
Challenges I am entering:
Craft Your Passion - Bunnies, Chicks & Eggs

Monday, April 14, 2014

Happy Easter!

I've been on Pinterest quite a bit lately, but I have also been OFF Pinterest, creating my own art using inspiration found on the site. This type of card caught my eye, so I knew I had to make one for this week's challenge at Squigglefly. I like the unusual folds and the way it looks both closed and slightly open.
I took a 5x12" piece of cardstock and scored it at 2", 4", 8" and 10". I folded in at 4" and 8", and folded out at 2" and 10". That's the base.
I used a Squigglefly digi image called Easter Tree by artist Carmen Gamble.  I colored it with Copics, distressed it with Tim Holtz Distress inks and popped it onto cardstock that I diecut with my Epic Six. I attached the whole thing to the left
panel of the front of my card.

Here's a better photo of the lovely Easter Tree image.
You can find lots of inspiration at the Squigglefly Challenge blog, where the challenge is to make an Easter-themed card. If you use a Squigglefly image ( there are freebies at the Store) you have a chance to win a prize!

I am also entering this card in the Outlawz Monday Greeting Card Challenge (Happy Easter theme).

Here's another card just to show you how easy it is to create this multi-folded card.  It isn't an Easter card, but it uses the Squigglefly image called "Dove" by artist Diana Garrison.

I made it for a dear friend of mine, who today celebrates his 25th anniversary of being ordained a priest. He is a great preacher, awesome counselor and has saved my soul numerous times. Congrats, Fr. Steve!

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Easter During the Zombie Apocalypse

I wonder what Easter would be like during the Zombie appocalypse?  Well, I sure wouldn't want this bunny hopping around my house, hiding eggs and eating brains! LOL

I used a digi image from Meljens Designs called Zombie Bunny (very apropos for my theme) and he is one cute bunny...uh, I mean zombie...uh, I mean...oh, never mind!  Here's a close-up of the image on my gate-fold card.

  Now  get your marshmallow guns out and hide your chocolate!!  Easter's coming!!  Boo!  Mwahaha!

Challenges Entered:
Meljens Designs - Sequins Color Challenge
Open-Minded Crafting Fun - Easter or Pastel Colors

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Altered Board Book Becomes a Birthday Album

Today I found inspiration on Pinterest and set out recycling a leftover board book neglected by my now 6 year old granddaughter.
I gathered my supplies: 1 Sesame Street board book, a large sheet of butcher paper, a foam brush, and Gesso
I brushed two coats of Gesso onto each page, drying in between coats. I also brushed Gesso onto the covers.  Two coats didn't completely cover all the brightly colored pictures from the original book, but it was enough for my purposes. I plan on covering each page with patterned papers to make a birthday album for said granddaughter.
Once all my pages were dry, I started with the front cover.
I like the way it turned out! I used Bo Bunny patterned papers, tearing out the parts I wanted to showcase (the cake, cupcakes, pennants and title). I added some blue acrylic paint to my Gesso and colored around the pictures (I used Mod Podge to adhere them). Then I outlined the words and pictures with Copic markers to make them pop. I finished off the cover by inking the edges with a darker blue ink and covered the page with first Mod Podge and then Tattered Angels glimmer mist for a subtle shimmer.
And that's all I can show you so far, as it is a work in progress.  Luckily, I have until October before I give it to my "I'm-too-old-for-board-books" granddaughter. LOL

Here's something else I found on Pinterest--a recipe to make your own Mod Podge, which I used in the project above!!
Mod Podge:
1 large Mason jar (or any clean glass jar)
3 cups White Glue
1 cup water
Stir well and keep sealed until ready to use.  YUP, that's all it is!!

Do you surf Pinterest? If so, there's a new challenge blog called Your Scrapbook Place and their first challenge is to create a project using Pinterest as your inspiration point. The sponsor for this challenge is Squigglefly, so participants get a chance to win free digis from them!! Hurry, the challenge ends April 13!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Another New release from QKD

Today my card showcases another new release, this time from artist  Jacquelynne Steves.  It's called Spring Chick.
I made a card using color blocking, as I don't make many that way and I need to stretch my crafting occasionally so I don't get stuck in a rut.  The patterned papers are a mix of leftover and my own hand-painted background using watercolors.

After decorating the top with various pieces of lace and trim, I added a few jewels and a nice sparkly button to denote the longer days and warmer Spring temps.  A tiny bouquet finishes off my card.

I colored my chick with Copics, then distressed the edges using Tim Holtz Faded Jeans distress ink. My chick looks so happy, waving her banner to announce that Spring is (finally) here!  I'm happy, too!

You can find Jacquelynne's Spring Chick at the QKD Shop.  For more inspiration, check out the Queen Kat Designs Facebook page.  And as always, happy crafting!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Peaceful, Easy Feeling

I don’t know of anyone who doesn’t deal with tension and stress on a daily basis. Between work and school, family and friends, errands and budge, it is a rare moment when we are at peace in our hearts. To live with stress day in and day out can be deadly; at the very least, it can sour your mood all day. So, what do YOU do to bring a sense of peace to yourself and your family?
For myself, I go to my craft room. When I create, my focus is complete and I forget my worries for a “mini” vacation. I also get together with my mom and sisters for a girls’ day out. We eat comfort food, play games and cards and laugh (a lot).
For my daughter, she achieves peace with journal writing. We also get cozy in my king-size bed and watch the movie “Mama Mia.” We’ve seen it so many times that we’re free to talk about our day and anything that’s bugging us.
For my husband, he bowls every other week. I also take him out to his favorite watering hole where we’ll snack on artichoke dip, sip his “dirty” martini (and I take the car keys when we leave), and opens up about all the stresses his work gives him. He also putzes (if he can call my craft room a "crap" room, I can call his hobby putzing) in the garage, making fun little projects with wood.
His hobby inspired me to make a Birthday card using a digi image from Sparkle N Sprinkle. SNS is this month's guest sponsor over at the Path of Positivity Challenge Blog, and the theme for April is...wait for it...
Here is what the original image looks like:
For my artwork, I made a stair step card, which is a 3D card with three layers from front to back. My sentiment adorns the first layers, while some fun buttons embellish the second.  I saved the SNS digi image, called Workbench, for the largest layer. Printing it twice, I colored both with Copics. I fussy-cut both and adhered the bottom layer flat against the card face. I used dimensional tape to adhere the second layer on top of the first.
I added a birthday sentiment, embossing it with glossy black powder.  After adding some "sparkle and sprinkle" with a fine tip glue pen and silver glitter, my card is complete.
Having a hobby is a simple and fun way to bring inner peace into your day.  None of us are running away from our problems. They are still there; but the little opportunities to put them on the back burner and be free of strife give us a much needed “peaceful, easy feeling.”
 So...Let me ask you again - how do YOU bring a sense of PEACE to yourself and your family?
While you reflect on that question, let me tell you about the wonderful prizes that the Path of Positivity Challenge is offering this month:
Three digital images from Sparkle N Sprinkle for the person out of the top seven who receives the most votes during voting week.

 Three digital images from Sparkle N Sprinkle for the post or project that the DT deems most inspiring of the bunch.
 Three digital images from Sparkle N Sprinkle, our Guest Sponsor, for a person chosen in a random draw based on all entrants.
 One digital designer paper from Décosse's Dynamite Doodles for one lucky voter who leaves a comment.
  One digital sentiment for every single person who enters the challenge from Décosse's Dynamite Doodles as well.
Note that Sparkle N Sprinkle is offering prizes in three different categories. That is in celebration of their new offerings of digital images!  Check them out HERE.

Project Details:
Papers-Tim Holtz Idea-ology, K & Co
Ink- Copics
Embellishments- Dress It Up buttons, SU glitter, SU black embossing powder

Challenges entered:
Sparkle N Sprinkle - Anything Goes with glitter, Embossing powder or flocking

Impatient for the Bright Colors of Spring

I am so impatient for Spring to arrive. Last month we went to Seatlle to check out the university there with our daughter.  When we landed, our eyes were dazzled by all the GREEN on the ground and in the trees.  Flowers were blooming in a riot of color. It was awesome.
When we returned to the Chicago area, we were happy that almost all of the snow had melted, but it was so BROWN and dull and blahh...
So in anticipation of my location getting a much needed change of season, I have used a Squigglefly digi image by artist Pamela Lehto called Dogwood Angel and Spring's brightest colors.  In fact, the challenge on the Squigglefly Blog is to make a card using a Squigglefly image and bright Spring colors.
I embossed yellow cardstock and popped it onto green cardstock base. My image is colored with Copics I used part of the image, which comes with wings and extra dogwood flowers.
I went a little crazy with embellishments, but I am so sick of winter, I just had to jazz my card up with jewel flourishes and flowers and a butterfly.  I even highlighted my card and the angel's wings with white gel pen!
I think I achieved my goal of using bright Springtime colors, don't you?!  So, get out your inks and papers and markers, grab a Squigglefly image and brighten up your day with a new card.  Show it off at the Squigglefly Challenge blog for your chance to win free digis.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Spring is Getting Ready to Bloom!

Today I used a Queen Kat Designs April release.  It's called Bloomin Basket by artist Jacquelynne Steves and it is just loaded with colorful blooms in anticipation of Spring!

I made a specially-folded card that was inspired by an image on Pinterest. I like it because it has a pocket in which to put surprises for the recipient.  In this case, it looks like a flower pot, so behind Jacquelynne's image, I plan to put a seed packet and send this card to somebody special!
After cutting and folding my "flower pot," (see instructions here) I added patterned papers from Basic Grey and the Paper Studio. I colored my basket with Copics, giving them sparkle and shine with smooch and Liquid Glass. The basket seemed to get lost on the patterned paper, so I colored a small paper doily with ink to frame it and then attached it to the front of my card.  I embellished simply with flower sequins, as the patterned paper was enough eye candy.
You can find Bloomin' Basket by Jacquelynne Steves in the QKD Shop. Happy crafting!

I am entering this challenge in Your Scrapbook Place challenge blog, which requires you to be inspired by a Pinterest project in order to play for prizes.