Tuesday, February 21

DecoArt Blog today!!

My "Green Man" canvas and tutorial are on the DecoArt Mixed Media blog today!! I would love for you to check it out!

Monday, February 20

How About a Road Trip?

Hello Monday!! Are you ready for this week's challenge at Simon Says Stamp? Our theme this week is "Transport It" - trains, planes, automobiles, hot air balloons...however you interpret transport is what we would love to see!

I have a road trip on my bucket list - I want to travel Route 66 from Chicago to L.A. one of these days, and stop and visit all of those iconic places along the way, and take lots of photos!  On previous road adventures, we have stopped in at some of the locations on Route 66, and it is like stepping back in time. 

So, in the meantime, I made this tag. When I came across Tim Holtz's Road Trip stamp set in my stash, it called to me and said, "hey, use me for this challenge!" I wanted to use colors that remind me of the Southwest and have a retro feel.

First steps are to stamp some images onto the huge tag with archival ink, and then start blending in the distress inks, and add some water splats.


Here I am in the midst of creative chaos! (looks a bit more organized than usual, lol)

I also stamped several images on the heavystock and inked those up to add later. I am not sure what model the car is, but I am imagining and singing "Pink Cadillac" - after all, why not!

I decided to add some journaling to the tag, both to get my thoughts down and to add another layer.

Next step - stencils and Grit Paste. Since you can't heat the grit paste, I had to be patient and let it dry overnight. (it doesn't take that long, but my patience needed it) My plan was to go in with distress crayons and add color to the stenciled images, but I liked it natural - some areas picked up a bit of the ink color. 

Let's add in some more texture with Black Soot and Picket Fence distress paints and the splatter brush.

Talk about finding the perfect embellies - an old Ford vehicle key, an American Tourister luggage key that looks like it is from that era, and the word travel. I dirtied up the keys a bit more with some black soot paint.


I wonder where your adventures will transport you? I hope you join us this week for our newest challenge, and look forward to seeing what you make! 

Simon Says Stamp offers a $50 voucher to one lucky participant! 



Simon is on Instagram! Use hashtag #sssmchallenge

I'm wondering what kind of transports the DT is coming up with, aren't you? Be sure to head over to get some fabulous inspiration! 

A great place to shop!!

Sunday, February 19

Love is in the Air at Creative Carte Blanche!

Love is in the Air, and I am joining the challenge at Creative Carte Blanche!

I am getting ready to teach a class to a group of friends, and designed these felt hearts to embroider with colorful floss and buttons. I chose bright happy colors to bring some sunshine into my winter and finished adding the buttons and embroidery before I stitched around it and stuffed it. 

As I worked on my heart, I thought these could look pretty neat on a stick and put in a plant to bring some color into the house.

I love this bright green, and I know it is not the typical color we think of in the month of love! But, I did photograph it in my beautiful tulip plant I received on Valentine's Day! 

Can you tell I am ready for spring?
Thanks so much for stopping by!!

Wednesday, February 15

Steampunk Heart under Pressure!

We have a special theme for February for our steampunk challenge, and that is to use your NEW STASH/FORGOTTEN STASH. I used both!! My new stash included Carabelle Studio and Impression Obsession stamps I'd been saving to use, and the awesome duck tape my son gave me for Christmas. I found some forgotten chipboard from BoozyBear when I was decluttering my "studio."

My original plan was to make a steampunk tag using the heart stamp, but it evolved into using parts of the tag and a canvas board, and lacing it up to hold in that heart under pressure! 

Here is my "triptych" opened up. I challenged myself to work outside of my color palette and go into the pink - maybe I should call this "SteamPink."

I started by using a palette knife and adding a thick gesso layer to the canvas and tag, then I went in and added texture by placing the knife into the wet gesso and lifting. I let this dry overnight. 

Ok, going in with the pinks and interference paints - oh my! Can I really do this?

Ok, toning it down a bit with highlights of silver. 

I knew I needed contrast or I would go into pink overdose, so I used teal on the flaps, and by mistake, some of the pink was still on my worktable and got onto the blue. I liked it, so added more! 

I used the teal and silver to paint the chipboard, and laid it all out, along with some metal gears and such after I did some stenciling. 
Think about everything a heart does from pumping blood through our bodies to holding in all the love we get and give. How could a mechanical heart do all this? Only under a LOT of steam pressure to keep it working!!

I added the images I stamped on deli paper (heart, handle, saying) onto the canvas and tags. Originally, I was going to keep the flaps simple, but then found my Impression Obsession Gears stamp, and of course, had to start stamping those all over. Not to stop there, oh no, I found a date stamp and added Feb 14 all over, and dots. 

Here's a TIP: to lace embroidery floss or twine through small holes, wind a bit of tape around the ends to give a bit of stability (like shoelaces) - so much easier!

Just like corsets lace up and "hold the heart in" I wanted to add this element to my piece, so punched holes up and down the flaps and laced them up. All I can say is, I am so thankful corsets are not fashionable today!!

I was looking for a way to attach the flaps to the canvas, and pulled out this cool duck tape I got for Christmas. It turned out to finish off the back beautifully.

"The heart has its reasons, which reason knows not..."

I had a lot of fun creating my Steampunk Heart with Corset, using up forgotten items from my stash, and new goodies. Now, its time for you to dig into your stash to create something steampunk/industrial and share with us this month at SASPC! 


Also Andy Skinner's Industrial Elements stencil

Thanks to our awesome sponsors who keep the gears turning!!

Monday, February 13

Simon Says: Use Your Favorite Tool!

Hello Monday! Our challenge for you this week at Simon Says Stamp is to use your favorite tool! Now, I thought about my scissors, which I did use, that I reach for all the time...but one of my favorite tools is my water brush, or should I say, my collection of them! 

I was inspired by one of my favorite whimsical artists, Joanne Sharpe, to create my own whimsical heartfelt bookmarks. This is the month of love, right? I love making these and giving them away as gifts. I have one myself that I've been using for a couple of years, and honestly, it looks as good as when I made it. 

So, here we go! On my first bookmark, I used the water brush to paint the heart with my Peerless Watercolors which I love, dripped water into the heart, and then stood it up to drip down. I like it! 

On my second, I painted my hearts, dripped water into them to create a soft watercolor effect, and blotted them with a paper towel.

I use my heat gun in-between adding colors to be sure they are dry, if I want to minimize color bleeding.

These are fun and easy to make, and don't need a lot of materials. I like to keep a small scrap of watercolor paper nearby to check colors, my paper towel for blotting (you can bet I will dry that and keep it for future use!), water brushes, watercolor paper, and pens for doodling.

This is what they look like once I finished adding all of my watercolors. You could easily decide to stop here if you like the way they look.

But, I also like to doodle these, using different pen sizes, black, white, colors...I do try to be sure to use a permanent pen. Once everything is dry, I went in with a bit of Wink Of Stella to add in some glitter, and punched a hole and added the bright, cheerful fibers.

Finished Bookmarks:

So, I am curious - what is your favorite tool? Let us know and share something you have created using it. Remember, Simon Says Stamp offers a $50 shopping voucher each week! 



Simon is on Instagram! Use #sssmchallenge to share.

Curious about the DT's favorite tools? Be sure to head on over to the challenge to find out! 

 A great place to shop!!


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