Monday, June 29, 2009

Have a seat!

One of the things that draws me most to Lockhart Stamps is the great way Karen does variation on a theme. Her chairs are so wonderful - they just make you want to set one or two out on the lawn and tickle your toes in the grass. This adirondack chair has great detail, too - just look at the cutout on the back. For this one, I pulled out my Copic markers; I wanted to give the chair a look of a sun-kissed blue chair. I also played with my airbrush system for the sky and grass. I added some stitching to my Paper Salon papers (sob - I miss Paper Salon!) for a more textured-look.

I also wanted to point out the sweet flowerpot in the stamped image; I know I've mentioned before how much I like the challenge of coloring a good terra cotta pot, and this one definitely falls into that category.

We ran away from home for a little last week; we accompanied Ward to a business conference in Winston-Salem NC. It was really fun for me, because I hadn't been back to North Carolina since I moved away 25 years ago. We stayed at this beautiful conference center, called Graylyn:

I took Wally and the Beav to Old Salem one day while Ward was in the conference. We went to all the places that I had been when I was their age and even ate at the bakery that I still remember to this day! (Anyone ever had Moravian Spice Cookies? YUM!)

One afternoon when the conference finished early, we drove to my old hometown, Concord. We went to my old house, and quite surprisingly, the owner was outside mowing the lawn; ends up this is the man who bought the house from my parents in 1984! He took Ward and I through the house, and unbelievably, there was very little that had changed! My younger brother's room had different wallpaper, but otherwise, EVERY room was the same. It brought tons of memories flooding back, things I didn't even realize I would remember. It was really something else!

So that was my trip down memory lane last week - thanks for indulging me while I shared! Oh, I also wanted to tell you that Karen Lockhart released a few new images last week that are just darling! Ellen Hutson has them in stock already, so you can take a peek at them there!

Be well,

Monday, June 22, 2009

In Full Bloom!

Hydrangeas are really one of my favorite flowers, and they are in full bloom here in Northern Virginia right now. While I live in a home that is new, I'm surrounded by older homes that have the most beautiful old gardens, and there are so many HUGE hydrangea bushes around that I'm just happy as a clam. If there's one thing about living here, it seems like one of my favorite trees or shrubs is always just about to bloom.

I used Lockhart's Hydrangea for my focal point on this image. This is definitely a great stamp to practice your colored pencil skills on, and I think you will be very happy with your results! This card layout is based on Sketch #100 from the Card Positioning Systems blog; it is a great resource for different sketches.

As always, you can click on the picture for a more detailed look. This image was colored only with a blender pencil, and not even that much, to be truthful. Hopefully it inspires you to grab your pencils and color an image or two today!

Be well,

Lockhart Stamp Company
Cardstock: (Vintage Cream, Spring Rain, Stamper's Select)
Papertrey Ink
Patterned Paper: (Girl Friday)Cosmo Cricket
Buttons, twine:
Papertrey Ink

Friday, June 19, 2009

A little different

Every so often, I really enjoy creating a card that is a different size. This one is 3"x6". (I only wish envelopes were easier to find!) So, can you tell how much fun I'm having with these Patio Pots from Karen Lockhart? They're so much fun to color - just take a look at those petunias! Here I paired it up with one of the sweet new sentiments from the latest release - Friends. It's perfect for creating a 'just because' card for someone special in your life. I placed the sentiment on the inside, and created an aperture using a Nestabilities die. You may notice those cute gloves, too; they're paper-pieced in! Aren't they an adorable touch? I chose green to balance the green in the leaves(since there is not any other green in the card). It's a good tip to remember.

I hope this gives you a little inspiration for trying something a little different! Have a wonderful weekend. Be well,

Stamps: (Petunia Patio Pot, Friends)
Lockhart Stamp Co.
Paper, ribbon, buttons, twine:
Papertrey Ink

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Wee & Whimsical Wednesday

There is just something about a cupcake, isn't there? And a tiny, cute cupcake is all the better, don't you think? Welcome to Wee & Whimsical Wednesday, that day every other week where I make something fun with Inchie Squares! If you're new to my blog, you may not be familiar with Inchie Arts Products, so be sure to take a look at all the fun things you can use for your Inchies. (You can also look under my labels on the right-side column for Inchie Arts to get more ideas!) What makes Inchies Squares so different? The beautiful quality! They're made from museum-quality preservation matboard and have a high cotton content. Ok, so what does that really mean to YOU? It means you have a surface that accepts coloring mediums exceptionally well. Another great fact about these? They're on top of things environmentally (so important to me!) - the tree content is from farmed trees, and for every one that is cut down, another is planted.

You know, usually I show you how well colored pencils go on the Inchie Squares, but today I decided to shake things up a little and go with Copics. First, I stamped the Lockhart Itty Bitty Rose Border, then followed up with the Itty Bitty Cupcake. I love how they look together!

The White Inchie Square accepts ink very well (here I used Memento Tuxedo Black), and the drying time is minimal. Then using Copics, I carefully colored the stamped areas. What I like most about using Copics on the Inchie Squares is that the colors don't bleed, it's almost like it just goes into the surface instead of out to the sides. It's GREAT! And just look at the vibrant color!

One thing that I'm asked about every so often is how I do the inside of my cards; my standard answer is that I generally don't finish them until I'm ready to send the card, that way I can tailor it a bit more to the recipient. Today, however, is an exception, mainly because I adore this sentiment from Karen Lockhart. I added a small strip of the patterned paper I used on the front (Bo Bunny) to make it a cohesive look.

I hope this brought a smile to your face! Thanks for stopping by today - Have a Happy Cupcake Day! Be well.

Lockhart Stamp Company
Inchie Square:
Inchie Arts, LLC
Cardstock, ribbon, buttons:
Papertrey Ink
Patterned Paper: (Love Shack)Bo Bunny
Markers: Copics
Other: pom-pom trim, machine stitching, dimensional paint

P.S., If you are looking for the Shimmerz Blog Hop post, it is just below this, entitled "Happy Birthday, Shimmerz". Thanks!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Happy Birthday, Shimmerz!

Welcome to the Shimmerz Birthday Blog Hop, DEAR friends!

I have created a DEAR birthday card today with lots of Shimmerz products on it. Here, take a peek:

Let's go a little closer to really see it:

WOW, right?! Who wouldn't love to get a bright, cheerful birthday card like this? I used Mellow Yellow on the basket, Sunny on the daisy centers and Celery on the leaves (all Shimmerz). Then, for the background layer, I used Baby's Breath Spritz. I was so pleased with all the shine these brought to the image.

Thanks so much for hopping by to celebrate this DEAR occasion. You'll want to follow the hop to Jennifer Love's blog to see what DEAR design she came up with to show you!

Be well,

P.S. - In case you hadn't figured it out yet, the word you're looking for here is DEAR. ;)

Shimmerz Products: (Mellow Yellow, Celery, Sunny Shimmerz; Baby's Breath Spritz)
Shimmerz Paints
Cardstock: (Lemon Tart, Stamper's Select)
Papertrey Ink
Patterned Paper: (Bitty Boxes)
Papertrey Ink
Stamps: (Vintage Picnic)
Papertrey Ink
Ribbon: (Lemon Tart swiss dots)
Papertrey Ink
Dies: (Labels One, Ribbon slides) Spellbinders Paper Arts

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Lavender Patio Pot

The Spring/Summer release from Lockhart Stamp Company is full of wonderful flora and fauna! The Patio Pot series is fantastic - and I love the variety of cards that you can use it for.

This image colors up so quickly! I can almost smell the lavender, can't you? I did very little shading in the lavender itself. The pot was fun - I love trying to get just the right coloring for terra cotta. I was even relatively content with the shading. (I'll let you in on a little secret - shading is my artistic nemesis. Even in high school art class, I was never content with my shading. I always do the 'imaginary light source' and all that, but never seem to get it just as I want it. Those of you who shade well - I salute you!)

Have you seen the new Lockhart images in your local store? I'm so lucky to have Angela's Happy Stamper close to my home - they always get the latest releases. (Psst, if you're local, I'm starting to teach there in July! I'd love to have the chance to meet you, so stop by and introduce yourself.) I'd love to hear about your local stamp store, so drop me a comment telling me where your little retail haven is!

I hope this inspires you to color a little happiness into your work today! Be well.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Hey Dad!

It's time to start thinking about Father's Day cards, and the Men's Sweater from Lockhart is a great image for just such a card.

I used a fun technique on the sweater that Karen Lockhart showed me - adding patterns in with colored pencils. It's so easy and yields the best results! I'll give you a quick overview: first, stamp your image onto cardstock. Next, grab an embossing stylus. Just 'draw' something in the open areas with the stylus tip.(Here, I did stripes, but you can just as easily do polka dots, swirls, etc.) By 'drawing' with the stylus, you will make an indentation (and if you look at it closely, you'll see it). Then, simply color over it with your colored pencil - the pencil goes right over the indentation, creating a fantastic pattern! Isn't that the best?! Karen outlines all of this beautifully on the Lockhart Tips & Techniques sections of the website. If you haven't looked at this great resource, I highly recommend it!

As always, please let me know if you have any questions on this! I hope that you had a wonderful spring weekend where you are! Be well.

Cardstock: (Spring Rain, Kraft, Pure Poppy) Papertrey Ink
Stamps: (Man's Sweater) Lockhart Stamp Company, (Houndstooth Backgrounder) Cornish Heritage Farms, (Brayton Font) Just Rite Stamps
Ink: (Spring Rain, Vintage Cream) Papertrey Ink
Ribbon: (Vintage Cream Twill) Papertrey Ink
Dies: (Deckled Rectangle Nestabilities) Spellbinders Paper Arts
Other: (Colored Pencils) Prismacolor
Tools: Embossing stylus, Wizard

Friday, June 5, 2009

AMuse me today!

It's been a while since I had an Amuse me Friday, so no better time than the present! Take a look at how cute this is - and I can't take credit for it! I totally CASE'd this from the amazing sample that A Muse Art Stamps sent to my local store. (And honestly, I think this is the very first time I've set out to do this - wow, it's so much fun! For my non-stamping friends, CASE is copy and steal everything.) Snorkel boy is just the cutest thing ever! OH - and that gingham. Swoon. 'Nuf said.

More of that gingham goodness! This time in orange. Swing girl totally had to have a dress to match! I love the sentiment - which I originally got to go with the baseball player and golfer - but works equally well with this sweet stamp. The card edge is scalloped with a little bit of Stickles, but otherwise, it is a very simple card. Both images were colored with Prismacolor pencils.

I hope that you have an a-musing weekend planned! ;) Be well.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Wee & Whimsical Wednesday

Clothespin magnets are so fun & easy to make - and Inchies Squares make it all the easier! If this colored image looks familiar, you're right! I colored up a bunch of this Itty Bitty Seed Packs image before the last Wee & Whimsical Wednesday. If you take a closer (unfocused, lol) look, you will see that I actually cut out one and layered it over the base image for a great dimensional look.

We have a great farmer's market in my town every Thursday Spring to Fall. I created this magnet to keep my list handy - I'm always seeming to forget something! (Last week it was a new basil plant, as my last one didn't like it when I forgot to water it for a couple days...let's just say that I'm a better crafter than gardener!)

Here's another one! For this one, I painted the sweet Good Night Moon image with Shimmerz paints. Since Inchie Squares are museum-quality matboard, they take the paints beautifully! I adhered a little patterned paper onto the front of the clothespin to change up the look a little, too. (Both clothespins were colored with Permapaque pens from Sakura. They have great coverage and dry faster than acrylic paints.)

And how do you make them magnetic? Simple! Just take a length of magnetic tape (available in any craft supply store) and cut it in half length-wise. It fits the backside of the clothespin perfectly!

I hope this inspires you to snag a couple clothespins from your laundry area! Just add a couple Inchies to dress them up and you'll have a fun message holder that you'll really enjoy seeing.

Be well.