Look for the Magic

With cold temperatures alternating with highs in the 80s, it seems as if Mother Nature has given spring a miss, going straight from winter to summer. With barely any time to enjoy the blooming of flowers due to fluctuating temperatures, social distancing, and rainy days, why not bring a little spring into your home with flowers made of paper? Guaranteed not to wilt and die, paper flowers can brighten any home year-round. 

I took advantage of the long Memorial Day weekend to sit down and be creative. I have a bunch of MDF shapes in my stash, and I wanted to do something spring-like, so I chose the unicorn. I’d done an MDF unicorn before, but it had more of a cosmos/outer space vibe, and this time I wanted magic and floral.

To begin with, I first painted the edges of the unicorn with Mermaid Sparkle Sparks paint from Prima/Finnabair. 

I then chose a piece of patterned scrapbook paper from my stash of 49 and Market papers to use as my background. The paper I chose is from a discontinued collection, but they have so many gorgeous papers to chose from, it wouldn’t be hard to find a different sheet.

Flipping both the unicorn and the scrapbook paper over, I traced the unicorn shape on the back with a pencil and cut the shape out using a pair of sharp scissors.

I used Mod Podge to glue the paper to the unicorn head, trimming off excess with a sharp craft knife.

Next, I used an embossing ink pad and embossing powder on the unicorn’s horn. For this project, I went with Mulberry Mist from WOW! Embossing Powder. I also used a piece of silver twine from Lawn Fawn to create the illusion of spirals on the horn.

At this point, I felt like the unicorn’s mane could use a little more something-something than just the flowers I was planning to add. So I took the Mystic Swirl stamp from Lavinia Stamps and stamped it several times in Soft Blossom and Soft Purple inks from Hero Arts. 

After that, I began to build my floral mane, using hot glue to attach the flowers from 49 and Market to my project.

I also added some purple crystals and 49 and Market’s dimensional stickers for added interest.

I then added some sentiment stickers from Finnabair’s Art Daily collection, with edges inked in Milled Lavender. 

For my final touch, I added drops of Glossy Accents here and there to the flowers, sprinkling over the top with the Angel Mix sequins from Dress my craft.

Thanks for stopping by! I’ll be on a vacation-staycation next week, so I hope I’ll get a chance to be creative while I’m off. 🙂

NSD 2020: Explore

Another (Inter)National Scrapbook Day has come and gone. I usually spend the day making my Mother’s Day card for mom, but for some reason, this completely slipped my mind, so I’m going to have to scramble to get one done tomorrow. Oops. Don’t tell Mom.

Anyway, instead of card making, I decided to do a little mixed media work, as I hadn’t really had much opportunity to play with mixed media thus far this year. I’ve had this cute little seahorse shrine from Retro Cafe Art Gallery for ages, which is what I decided to go with.

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The shrine comes unassembled, so first I glued some crumpled up tissue paper to all the pieces with Mod Podge. I carefully cut the paper away from the slots and tabs before gluing the shrine together with a strong, clear glue.

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I used a swirl stencil to add more texture to the background with Prima graphite paste. After everything had dried, I painted the whole thing with black gesso. Using several different small sea critter dies from Memory Box/Poppystamps, I glue die cuts to the shrine, trimming off any major overhang. I also added a few small, clear droplets. I then painted the die cuts and drops with black gesso.

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In the niche, I glued down some metal embellishments painted with black gesso on top of a chipboard piece of coral. After everything was glued securely, I started painting the whole thing with three colors of Prima Metallique wax in Old Denim, Mint Sparkle and Blue Lagoon. (You can see the gradient effect better in person.) Afterwards, I went over the top of all the texture with Vintage Gold wax on my fingertip. Finally, I added my focal point, a stunning Swarovski jellyfish stone in Bermuda Blue. So, so sparkly!

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Thanks for stopping by. Happy Mother’s Day!

Easter Egg Extravaganza

I work for the local newspaper, and since the COVID-19 outbreak shut most things down, we’ve been struggling to fill our Lifestyles section. Which is why my editor asked if I’d do another step-by-step craft page for the week of Easter… because we didn’t really have anything else at the moment. So, I created some Cherry Blossom Easter Eggs, based on some I’d seen on Pinterest, to share with our readers.

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Start by painting your eggs white. That way, if there’s a gap in your twine, the color won’t be as visible. (If you use plastic eggs, glue them shut first.)

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Squeeze some quick-dry glue onto the top of the egg. Work on a small area at a time so the glue doesn’t dry up before adding your twine.

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Using your finger or a pair of tweezers, place the end of your twine into the glue, rolling the twine into a coil around the end.

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Carefully begin winding the twine around the egg. Use your fingers or tweezers to keep your alignment straight. Apply glue about 1/4 to 1/2 inch high at a time during the winding.

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Once you have completed winding the twine around the egg, allow the glue time to dry so the twine is securely in place. Using a brown or black marker, sketch some branches onto your egg, front and back.

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Trace the lines you sketched with a metallic brown acrylic paint using a fine tip brush. After the paint is dry, begin adding flower sequins with glue onto your branches. I used pink flower sequins to create cherry blossoms, but any color would be just as pretty!

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I also created some other Easter eggs for the feature, to show different options families could do while stuck at home.

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Using the same twine technique as the cherry blossom eggs, decorate your eggs in a shabby chic or vintage style using lace, ribbon and paper flowers.

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Decoupage papers come in a variety of colors and patterns you can use to create decorative eggs in your own style.

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Create an Easter wreath by gluing painted eggs, paper flowers, Spanish moss and ribbon onto a wreath base. Best for indoor use only.

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To jazz up your Easter decor, use push-pins and sequins to add sparkle and bling to your painted eggs.

Have a Happy Easter, however you celebrate. Stay home. Stay safe. We’ll get through this! ❤

Back from hiatus!

Has it really been over two months since I last updated my blog?? Well, all I can say is the past couple of months have been ridiculously crazy. First, there were the holidays to get ready for. My very pregnant friend/coworker was just miserable in her last month of pregnancy, so I tried to help out by wrapping her gifts for her. My craft room was turned into wrapping central! Her baby made a surprise entrance on Christmas night, a week early, so we’ve been muddling along without her at work while she’s been on maternity leave. And work has been so busy, all I want to do when I get home is eat dinner and go to bed!

Hopefully things will begin to get back to normal a bit when she gets back in a couple of weeks!

I do have a couple of things to share. My parents’ 50th anniversary was Dec. 13, 2019. I made them a special card to commemorate the occasion.

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I used the Spellbinders Grand Cabinet die set with the Happily Ever After add-on to celebrate their golden anniversary.

Then I was able to make a couple of shaker tags for my friend’s Christmas presents.

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Of course, since the girls are crazy about unicorns, I used two unicorn stamps from Lawn Fawn. I heard later they loved them!

Finally, in an effort to get my crafty mojo flowing, I watched some videos on YouTube. A video by Nuneka sparked the creative juices and I was able to create this mixed media altered embroidery hoop:

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No tutorial this time, but I used a lot of the same techniques as in the video.

Of course, I wasn’t completely idle over the holidays. Even though I couldn’t use my craft room because of the Christmas chaos, I was able to make some jewelry, as my jewelry-making supplies aren’t kept in that room. I have several new pieces in my Etsy shop, CarolineByDesignTN. Stop by if you have a chance and have a look!

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I’ll have a Valentine’s pocket letter for my next post! Thanks for stopping by!

An Unfortunate Ending

I know I’ve mentioned my doll collection on this blog a time or two. One of my favorite doll lines was the Evangeline Ghastly line from Tonner/Wilde Imagination. I love the spooky, gothiness of this particular doll, and she’s perfect for this time of year.

That’s why, when I saw a tombstone tutorial using one of the Tim Holtz Etcetera tags that was posted last year, I knew I wanted to create my own little tombstone prop for my Evangeline dolls. Of course, I didn’t get to it right away, and then I kept putting it off until a year had passed. But this year, as the Halloween season approached, I decided to finally dig out my supplies and work on it.

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I’ll not go into detail about how I made this. I will instead point you in the direction of the tutorial I used to make my own tombstone. But I used a lot of the same techniques. And this little prop will look fabulous amongst my spooky Evangeline collection.

Next week I’ll have a Halloween pocket letter and some ATCs to share. Thanks for stopping by!

The Witching Hour

For most, Labor Day marks the unofficial end of summer. For me, it marks the first weekend of Halloween!

Halloween is my absolute favorite holiday. For someone who can’t stand watching horror movies, I love the creepy, spooky trappings that are associated with the holiday, and Halloween crafts are my favorite to make.

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I’ve had this idea in mind since I bought the Julie Nutting Altered Dollhouse a couple of years ago. I told myself this year was the year I was finally going to sit down and create my very own haunted house. I’ve been collecting Halloween themed stickers, embellishments and trinkets for this project for a couple of years, so it came together pretty easily. I even have enough left over to do a second project like this in the future.

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I painted the dollhouse black and lined each of the trays with Halloween scrapbook paper or Worn Wallpaper remnants by Tim Holtz.

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After that, it was just a matter of filling the trays with bits and pieces of spooky embellishments. Some of my favorite things to work with a dimensional stickers from Jolee’s Boutique.

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For the center tray, I used a piece of Graphic 45 paper with a quote by Edgar Allan Poe. I also used Poe’s portrait in the space beneath, adding a raven as well. The candles I made myself using rolled up paper and hot glue and painted with Distress Paints.

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For the largest space, I knew I wanted to use the witch paper dolls from Tim Holtz. I also had a Beautiful Board spider clock from Reneabouquets that I heat embossed with black powder. It was a perfect addition to my haunted house.

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A couple of the miniatures I used are from Michaels. They have some of the best Halloween decor every year!

Thanks for stopping by. May your Halloween season be spooky!

Art journal playtime

I had a week off work recently, and I spent the time not only cleaning my craft room, but playing in my art journal. I have two art journals to share with you today.

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It’s All Perspective

I’d had this idea in mind for a while, of greenery spouting from the Tim Holtz skull die cut. My original plan was to have butterflies dancing among the plants, but as I was going through my dies, looking for my butterflies, I came across some lovely koi fish dies from Memory Box/Poppystamps. So I went a little abstract and had fish “flying” between the greenery. I even added an octopus and tentacle coming from the eye socket. I kind of love how it turned out.

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Think Different

My second layout, I used some elements from Maremi’s Small Art Design that I fussy cut and adhered to my abstract background. Not my favorite page I’ve ever done, but I do love the colors, and Marta’s designs and sentiment stickers are just gorgeous and fun to play with.

Thanks for dropping by. I’ll be showcasing my first Halloween project later in the week!

Adventure Awaits

Hello again! I’m sharing today a project created for a beach-themed Reneabouquet swap on the forums of Scrapbook.com. I decided to do a reverse canvas for my partner, featuring the Golden Coast collection from Prima Marketing.

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I had planned on doing step-by-step photos with this one, but the project went wrong in the beginning and by the time I had salvaged it to my liking, I had missed a whole bunch of steps, and some photos I thought I had taken, I couldn’t find. So I will just have to do my best to describe the process.

I started with an 8×10 canvas, working on the back side. At first, I glued down some printed tissue paper, spraying it with Lindy’s sprays, but after leaving it to dry overnight, I decided I just didn’t like how it came out. So I covered the edges with white crackle paste, which covered most of the color. I glued down a piece of Prima scrapbooking paper on the inside of the canvas, and applied a bit more crackle paste and some art stones around the inside edges.

I also stamped on top of the crackle paste with a text stamp, using a brown Archival ink.

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On the lower right-hand corner, I layered flowers from the Golden Coast collection, along with a few seashells and a flamingo from the Golden Coast ephemera pack. Another seashell was glued in the top right corner.

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On the left side of the canvas, I glued down a piece of cheese cloth before adding two chipboard pieces from Kaisercraft at the bottom. They were heat embossed with Opaque Pastel Blue and Oyster Glintz embossing powders from WOW! Embossing Powders. A couple of seashells were added to the “shelf.” In the top left corner, I added some more flowers, the balloon ephemera piece from the Golden Coast collection, and a butterfly from Reneabouquets.

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In the center, I painted a resin frame from my stash with Dusty Rose Impasto paint, then high lighted with Vintage Gold wax from Prima. On top of the frame, I glued a Beautiful Board compass from Reneabouquet, heat embossed with Oyster Glintz embossing powder. A resin seahorse was painted with Manor Blue Impasto paint, also highlighted with the gold wax. The sentiment is a Tim Holtz quote chip colored with Picked Raspberry Distress Ink and edged with gold wax. I used a scrap styrofoam piece to pop it up.

Finishing touches included dry brushing the flowers with white gesso; adding a bit of gold wax here and there, especially around the edges of the frame; adding mini art stones for a sandy look; and adding Beautiful Beads in Bronzed Teal here in there for some “pearls.”

I hope my swap partner likes the project! I’ve got another mixed media piece started, and I’ve been careful to take photos of the process so I’ll have another tutorial up soon. Thanks for stopping by!

Thankful

Hello! I hope everyone in the northern hemisphere is surviving the sweltering summer temperatures we’ve been having lately! Remember to take breaks and stay hydrated when out and about!

As much as I look forward to warmer weather after a cold winter, these hot summer days have me longing for the cool crispness of autumn. I thought I’d try to channel that into my latest project, featuring Prima’s Autumn Sunset collection.

I started off with an MDF base in the shape of a leaf from Diverse Woodworking.

Using a piece of paper from the Autumn Sunset collection, I traced the leaf, cut it out and glued it onto my base using Mod Podge. I then sanded the sides to take care of any overhang. I spread some crackle paste through the Woven stencil by Prima and left it to dry overnight, so the cracks could appear naturally. I prefer to let crackle paste dry naturally as opposed to using a heat gun.

The next day, I used some Lindy’s Starburst sprays in Autumn Maple Crimson, Steampunk Sepia, Red Hot Poker Orange and Cattail Copper Brown to create splatters of colorful shimmer on my leaf.

My next step was to use a Prima text stamp with Archival Black ink to add some more texture to the leaf.

I set my leaf base aside to work on my centerpiece. I took a chipboard frame from Scrapiniec and heat embossed it with WOW Oyster Glintz embossing powder. I also cut the gold foil sheet music out of another piece of paper from the Autumn Sunset collection, distressed and inked the edges and glued it to the back of the frame.

My next step was to play with flowers and leaves from the Autumn Sunset collection, along with some sisal, layering them into a composition I liked.

To finish my piece off, I added some pieces from the Autumn Sunset ephemera pack, some of the coordinating gems, and a butterfly from one of the flower packs. I also splattered white gesso over the piece as well as using some Vintage Gold wax here and there. My final addition was a resin lady which I painted with Hazelnut Metallique paint and highlighted with the Vintage Gold wax.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope this little tutorial was helpful. If you have any questions, just leave a comment or shoot me an email. Stay cool out there!

Art journals galore

I’ve been on a bit of an art journal kick this past week or so. It’s been a busy time at work — always happens the week before a holiday (July 4th in this case), so playing around in my art journals was all I had time to do. I work on them in my spare moments between work and home duties. So, I don’t have any tutorials for these, but things should slow down a bit now that the holiday is over, but I promise one soon.

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This one I did for my fairy art journal. I know it’s a mermaid layout, but I thought it was fitting for my fairy journal. The mask is by Carabelle Studios and the stamps by Marianne Design.

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This one was inspired by a YouTube tutorial I had seen a week or so ago. I usually like to create little scenes but sometimes it’s fun to just be abstract. Paper tags by 7 Dots Studio. Sprays and Magicals by Lindy’s Stamp Gang. Stamps from Prima Marketing.

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Space Whales! I’ve had this one in my mind for a while, but never got around to ever doing it until this week. Whale stamps from Hero Arts. Paints by Prima Marketing.

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The July 2019 monthly challenge at Lavinia Stamps was “A Midnight Blue with an Orange Hue.” This Les Mis quote stamp by Impression Obsession actually gave me the idea for this layout in my fairy art journal. Stamps by Lavinia Stamps. Mountain stencil by Honey Bee Stamps. Inks my Ranger and Tsukineko.

Thanks for stopping by!