Friday, March 30, 2012

Tutorial: Crackle Paint "Check Out the Booty" Magnet Tin

Tin with clear top (I am using the Grundtal Container from Ikea.)
acrylic paint of your choice in color
crackle medium (I'm using Deco Art 1 Step Crackle Medium)
applicator or brush to spread the paints
distress color in either a matching or contrasting color to your acrylic paint
rubber stamps (I'm using the Bombshell Stamps Vintage Mermaid Rubber Stamp set Mermaid Treasure)
permanent ink

*Note - my tin has a magnet on the back so I can stick it to the fridge. If you want to use a scrap tin that you have, such as an Altoids tin and you would like to add a magnet sheet to the back, magnet sheets can be purchased at your local hardware store. Usually they are adhesive backed or you can hot glue them to the back of the tin. There are also variations on this project such as laying down paint and letting it dry, sanding the peaks of the tin, then laying down a second coat of paint and wiping the second layer of paint away so that the second layer only sticks to the roughed up part of the tin.


Lay down a coat of acrylic color onto your paper and let it air dry.

Once the paint has dried, lay down a coat of crackle medium. You want to let this medium go where it would like as the paper warps because the thinner the layer of the crackle medium, the smaller the cracks - the thicker the layer of the medium, the larger the cracks. Let it settle where it wants on the paper.
I set my paper on the stove under the fan to assist in the drying process. Let dry for 2-4 hours, depending on thickness of the coat you laid down.

Once your paint is dry you should start to see cracks appearing.

Work your distress ink or other ink into the surface. The ink will settle in the cracks.
Wipe off the excess ink from the top of the paint.  The ink in the cracks will remain.

Trace the top of your lid with a pen. Cut out the circle and stamp with permanent ink.

Wedge into the top of the lid, decorative side up. Fill tin with goodies, finish with decorative ribbon or raffia and you are done!

I hope you try this tutorial as I had a lot of fun doing it!

Xo, Rachael

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Craft Wars to Premiere on June 26th

According to the Huffington Post, there's a new craft tv show that's going to be out. It's gonna be called "Craft Wars". And it's going to be hosted by none other than Tori Spelling. UG! She's disgusting, I can't stand her!!! I would have been temped to watch this show, which is airing on TLC, but since I found out that Tori Spelling will be hosting, there's no freaking way.  The premiere is set for June 26th.
I'm not sure what it is exactly that I don't like about Spelling. Maybe its her appearance (seriously, she's as bad as Jennifer Aniston! They both look like horses.)  Maybe it's the way she conducts herself (ie whoring herself and her family out to reality tv shows) or perhaps its her complete lack of acting abilities. Or maybe, just maybe, its the haunting memories of the torture I suffered through as a teenager, also known as 90210. Whatever it is, it enduces the gag reflex.
Here's the Huffington Article.
Craft enthusiasts, prepare for battle. Tori Spelling will host and executive produce "Craft Wars," a new competition series on TLC.
"As a lifelong crafter, I love how crafting gives you the opportunity to reallyexpress yourself and show your creativity. It's an amazing outlet and nothing shows love more than something homemade," Spelling said in a statement. "I can't wait to share my passion and be inspired by all the amazing contestants."
Each episode of "Craft Wars" will pit three everyday crafters against each other in two rounds of challenges. Each round encompasses different genres of crafting. The 10-episode series started production in Los Angeles and is set for a June 26 premiere.
As part of her hosting duties, Spelling will act as a guide for the audience and a mentor to the contestants. The reality star has her own line of craft products, "The Tori Spelling Collection," and incorporated her skills in a new party planning book, "CelebraTORI." The contestants will be judged by author and Glitterville Studios founder Stephen Brown, DIY lifestyle expert Erica Domesek and Michaels creative expert Jo Pearson.
"'Craft Wars' continues to re-define crafting as something extremely modern -- this is not your grandmother's crocheting," Amy Winter, GM of TLC, said in a statement. "At its core, the series celebrates the creative sprit, which will resonate with TLC's audience."

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Bombshell Stamps Blog Hop Color Challenge

Hi All and Welcome!

If you're here for the Bombshell Blog Hop, you should be coming from Laura's blog.  The challenge for this hop was to make a card featuring the following colors.

This was a real challenge for me! I decided to use my new set, Growing Hearts. Here's my take on the hop's card!

Please let me know what you think! Leave a comment below. :-) 

Now, onto Kelli's blog at !

NOTE:  If you have come to this page just out of the blue and would like to join in from the beginning of the hop, go here to join in the fun from the beginning!

Blog roll:
+ Rachael's blog - you are here - +
and finally, last but not least, Kathi  

Have fun hopping!!

Xo, Rachael

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Stuff I Love: Pin Up Pillows

Aloha and Welcome Back!
Today is Tuesday and that means its time for another "Stuff I Love!" Here are my picks for this week. These pillows are so cool, what a fun way to spice up your home decor! This collection was a lot of fun to make. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do! Isn't it fun?! Leave me a comment and let me know what you think of this collection.

As always, click the photo above for a more detailed view. :-)

Xo, Rachael

Monday, March 26, 2012

What, no New in my Shop?!

Hi All and Welcome Back!
Normally Monday mornings I bring you a "New in my Shop" addition, but I've run out of tape - oh NO! I've ordered an ATG tape gun that should be here in a few days, but until then I'm stuck without getting to glue anything down.
I am, however, still designing cards, which you will get to see in this Wed's "In My Studio". ;-)
Until tomorrow friends!
Xo, Rachael

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Stuff I Love: Everything Frida!

Hi All,
Thanks for tuning in again today. Here is my entry for Stuff I Love - Everything Frida!

Frida Kahlo is one of my favorite artists, if not my favorite artist. She's an interesting person and had an interesting life. She's best known for her self-portraits, but painted many other things as well. Her work was strongly representative from her personal experiences. Her work had many strong Jewish themes (she claimed her father came from hungarian-jewish stock) and Catholic symbols.

Frida shaved three years off her age so that she would be associated with the Mexican Revolution. She was a Communist, bisexual, had polio when she was young and never fully recovered from injuries from when a bus collided with a trolley when she was a teenager.She had many extramarital affairs, was a feminist and had a fierce temper. She was easily one of the most intriguing 20th century female artists.

"I was born a bitch. I was born a painter." - Frida Kahlo

What do you love about Frida? I love her use of color and her imagination.

That's it for today! Thanks for stopping by!
Xo, Rachael

Monday, March 19, 2012

Monday's New in my Shop

Hi All and Happy Monday!
I've got some great items in the shop today. Here are the recent additions to my shop.

Birthday Girl - Happy for you!

Geisha Girl!

Muertes love card

Thanks floral set.

And I'm about to ad this cute little Bettie Page card as well as this sweet birthday card.

Xo, Rachael

CPS Challenge # 257

Hi All,
Decided to play again with CPS. Here's my entry for this week's sketch! I think it's rather cute. :) I love Bettie Page! I invite you to tell me what you think in the comment section below! :-)

Xo, Rachael

Friday, March 16, 2012

Poker Face Greeting Card and Matching Envelope

Poker Face Greeting Card & Matching Envelope

KaiserCraft Timeless Collection p653 Sheet Music
paper trimmer
nail file
a2 card base with matching envelope
black and tan gingham paper (I'm using DCWV 12x12)
Complementary red paper (I'm using a sheet from Martha Stewart's Critter's Designer Paper Pad)
Retro Cowgirl Rubber Stamp Set by Bombshell Stamps (using the profile pinup)
Luck and Fate Rubber Stamp Set by Bombshell Stamps (using Luck & Fate banner)
glue dots
copics or colored pencils
adhesive runner
xact-o knife and self-healing cutting mat (or other protective surface!)
pop dots or dimensionals

Make your card base. (I cheat and buy mine!)
flip times collection p653 over and cut out your choice of playing cards.
If you want you can look up poker hands and arrange the cards that way its kind of a cute touch.
Trim playing cards and shape with a nail file if needed.

I am using a flush hand from 5 card poker.

Decide on sizing of the gigham that fits how you are going to arrange the small playing cards. I don't do exact measurements and I just end up eyeballing everything. Do what looks good to you! Some overlapping of
the gingham and base of the card might happen.

Fan the cards out in a pleasing manner.

Stamp your profile pinup and your Luck & Fate banner on a separate sheet of paper and expertly color with copics or colored pencils.

Here are the copics that I used for this card.

Cut out each piece stamped image once its colored.

Distress mini playing cards if so desired. Usually I would distress most of my pieces but since there is so much brown in this card design already, I'm going to leave them as they are because I need the white to pop the design.

When you have your mini cards fanned, put a glue dot behind each one and stick them to each other. This will not only add a slight dimension to the cards, but will also allow you a temporary hold on the cards so that you can position them before gluing.

Glue down your background papers once you are satisfied with the positioning.

Add glue to the back of your mini playing cards and glue down.

Take an exact-o knife and self-healing mat and cut out the negative space between the bombshell's legs. I always do this because I'm anal retentive and it bothers me. I also think it makes the design look cleaner, adds depth and precision and detail to designs, but that's just me! :)

Once you position the banner in the perfect place, glue it down.

Now pop your bombshell off the page with dimensionals and you're done with the card!

Stamp the "BANG!" gun from the pinup set on the lower front left of the envelope and line in red and gingham, or just gingham if you're lazy like me. :-)

Special Notes: If you have any of the Tim Holtz mini playing card embossing folders, those would be fun to try too! Also, the base of my card is flawed. :-( When I glued down the playing cards I intentionally went over the two layers, but went too far out and now it won't fit properly in it's envelope! GAH! ;-)

Thanks for tuning into this tutorial. This card was really fun and my first time actually keeping *track* of all of the items that I use to create a card for tutorial/duplication purposes. Exciting! I'm going to start trying to get published in magazines here in a bit. We'll see!!

Leave me a comment below and show some love! What do you think of this card? Were my directions easy to follow? I'm so proud of this cute little card, so I hope you like it too.

Xo, Rachael

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

CPS Card Challenge - Sketch (#256)

Have you ever played along with the blog I had never heard of that sketch blog until my good friend Bombshell Em told me that Bombshell Stamps was sponsoring the card sketch this week. So I popped on over and checked it out. The sketch was really quite cute, so I whipped something up! Here it is, what do you think???

Leave a comment and show some love! :-)

Xo, Rachael

In my Studio

A few days ago I had the urge to draw. So I sketched. I think I saw this image or drawing somewhere, but I tried to recreate it and make it my own from what I could remember. The left hand is weird. They're so difficult, I've never been good at hands. Or noses.
I've also been playing around with stamps.  I made this card from an image I stamped AGES ago and hadn't used in one of my projects. I think this card is quite cute! Perfect for that country girl you know.
I did something I rarely do on greeting cards, tho. I added a hand-written sentiment to this. Not because I wanted to, but because I didn't have an appropriate sentiment stamp, I don't do individual letter stamps (seriously? As if I don't have ENOUGH crafting supplies!!!) ............aaaand because apparently, my printer is my arch nemesis. 

Which leads me to this video.

In other news, I made this card for a Kathi's sketch challenge at bombshell stamps.
I created another card for the bombshell blog hop on the 28th, which I'll be sure to post for, that used this same Muertas set.

I'm currently working on a shrine/alter item that I've cut and folded from cardstock. I still have yet to work in-depth on this project, but it's next up on the agenda.
I'm looking forward to spending a lot more time on this particular project. About two years ago I saw a project constructed using this shrine cutout and it just blew me away. I've got my colors picked, and now for the fun part - selecting images and paper!!! If you craft, do you like to pick your papers or your images first?

Anyways, my eyes are drooping and I'm finally starting to fall asleep. Take care all and thanks for stopping by! Leave a comment and show some love! :-)

Xo, Rachael

Friday, March 9, 2012

Take a Nap, be More Creative

This article has been taken from Fast Company's March 2012 issue.

BY Rachael Z. Arndt | 01-27-2012

An exploration both artistic and scientific, Jonah Lehrer's Imagine: How Creativity Works tells us why a walk can lead to a big idea and how brainstorming dulls imagination.
FC: How does creativity work?
Lehrer: The word itself is a misnomer. We use creativity in the singular, as if there's one way the brain generates new connections. But there are probably three neurologically distinct forms of creativity. One is when you have these moments of insight that come out of the blue--when you have epiphanies in the shower. Those seem to come from the part of the brain that's involved in things like the interpretation of metaphors and the processing of jokes. Another form is really working hard at solving a problem--it's not nearly as fun as having an epiphany, but it's just as important. The last form is spontaneous improvisation--what Miles Davis did.
Can a person choose which kind of creativity to use?
The type of mental process we should use really depends on the type of problems we're solving. I think we have to do a better job of diagnosing where we are in the creative process and adjusting our thought process accordingly. When I'm stuck, I realize now I need to let myself relax, because the answer will arrive only when I stop looking for it. The things that are most essential for big ideas aren't going to look productive. It's going to involve taking a nap, finding a way to relax. It may look like goofing off, but it's absolutely essential.

Can a person choose which kind of creativity to use?
The type of mental process we should use really depends on the type of problems we're solving. I think we have to do a better job of diagnosing where we are in the creative process and adjusting our thought process accordingly. When I'm stuck, I realize now I need to let myself relax, because the answer will arrive only when I stop looking for it. The things that are most essential for big ideas aren't going to look productive. It's going to involve taking a nap, finding a way to relax. It may look like goofing off, but it's absolutely essential.
You say brainstorming doesn't work. Why? 
When you look at scientific literature, it's very unambiguous that brainstorming doesn't work. The first reason is because of its main rule: Thou shalt not criticize. As long as the criticism is constructive, it forces people to engage on a deeper level. The problem with brainstorming is free associations are really superficial and constricted by language and cliches. Criticism is important to get past that.
Why are we so fascinated by the idea of creativity?
It's one of the defining tricks of human nature. We somehow conjure up new ideas out of thin air--we can't help but find new connections. But you really can't just address it from the perspective of the brain. It's also about the cultures we're embedded in and the people we work with, how we work with them, and which cities we live in.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Geisha Girl Thanks Card

Hi All!

I have a new card that I made using Bombshell Stamps' Geisha digi stamp. At first I was luke-warm about this lady, and then after playing with her for a bit I LOOOOOOOOVE her!!! There are so many cool options to do with this image! Isn't she so cute? She's meticulously hand-colored with copic markers and popped off the page for depth.

Domo is the short version of "thanks". Blank on the inside and available in my store. Leave me a comment and let me know what do you think!

Xo, Rachael

Saturday, March 3, 2012

10 Reasons to Send a Handmade Card

Hi Ladies and Welcome Back.

Thanks for joining me again today.  I bring you my own unique list of "10 Reasons to Send a Handmade Card". (As if you really *need* 10 reasons, right?) But everybody loves a list, so let's get to it!

1. Stay in contact with your family and friends - And really, this is the most important reason.
2. Everyone loves to get something in the mail - Who doesn't love getting something in the mail?
3. Something unexpected - Surprise your friend or family with something out-of-the-blue! Totally makes someone's day, more-so when it's unexpected!
4. Join a part of the handmade revolution - When you buy from people who create handmade items you are not only purchasing something but making a statement that says "I prefer to spend my money with the people that count, NOT the big corporations."
5. Supports handmade artisans - When you support and encourage handmade growth, you really are supporting and encouraging handmade artisans to continue with their work.
6. Tons of different styles for different types - There's pretty much something for everyone out there!
7. Everyday cards "Just Because" - There are cards on the market that you can find that just send a simple everyday thanks for being you message. I can't think of a better everyday card!
8. Seasonal Celebrations - Every year Christmas and Chanukah are the major holiday seasons to send and receive cards, and this is when most cards are sent. But there are also cards out there for year-round celebrations. Handmade cards are an easy way to continue a festive attitude year-round; keep the joy throughout the year.
9. Makes the recipient smile - This kind of goes with #'s 1, 2 and 3.
10. Each card is a little work of art - completely unique! No two cards are completely alike, even if they are the same design. Cherish each one because it's as priceless as a fine Monet.

Well, that's it! What do you think of my list? Do you have any ideas to add to it? Share your ideas and let me know what you think in the comments below.

Xo, Rachael

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