Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Bombshell Stamps Embroidered Stamping

I'm currently working on my home, upgrading here and there and adding touches that I love. A few weeks back I  installed kitchen cafe curtains (sewed them myself!)

and as a simple decorative touch I added one of those retro three arm towel racks above the sink. 

I found a delicate pillowcase that had embroidery on it that I loved and cut it down to tea towel size.  I've been displaying this on the towel rack ever since.

This also gave me an idea.  Embroidery is cheap, easy and fun (seriously, the floss is practically next to nothing and you can get a whole pack of all sorts of colors at Joann's for less than $10) and, even though I've never done embroidery before, when I was little I did cross stitch, which is kind of the same thing.  Well, I've seen tea towels on etsy that women have embroidered and I absolutely love them. But lets be real - I'm not going to spend $35 plus shipping for a stinking tea towel!  And besides, personal crafts are always better, in my opinion.

So I went to Joann's and got everything that I needed - the wooden ring, some fabric (I purchased a pack of 'stitch 'em ups' which are flour sack tea towels in the big size and then cut them down to the size that I wanted - this way I had fabric left over for whatever I wanted) a book of stitches and easy how-to, embroidery floss and needles. I think all-in-all I only spent like $30-40 bucks.

Next I pulled out my Bombshell Stamps, selected an ink (it didn't matter to me if it was dark or if it was permanent because I was just going to cover the ink anyways) and stamped my image down on the cloth.  I then put the cloth into the ring and began my stitching, using a basic straight stitch or back stitch. Here's how it turned out!

The eyes are a little scary and the back is not as clean as I would like, but I don't think this is too bad for my first try!  I was tempted to cut this down to a 5x7 and stick it in a frame, but I think its better as a tea towel.

What do you think?

I've still got to hem the edges a bit.  I started that the other night with a pink wave design.  I love this design and I love that my sewing machine has so many options! I can even do embroidery with my machine, once I figure out the attachments. Probably not going to happen - I've got so many sewing projects on my table right now.  (Butterick just had a pattern sale!)

Thanks for stopping by! Leave me a comment and let me know what you think of my upgrades and projects! :)

Let's Talk Soon!

How often is it that we just get so caught up with life that we sometimes forget to connect with the friends that mean the most to us?

I've got a friend that I've known since 3rd grade. We don't talk much anymore, but when we do, its like we pick up right where we left off!
So this card seems appropriate for those kinds of friends.
I made this card using Art Impression's Texting BFFs set.
I hope you like it! Leave a message in the comments!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Say it with Flowers (stamped flowers, that is)

What's the best part of spring? The colors? The birds singing? The sunshine? Yes, yes and yes. But don't forget the flowers, the holidays and the great family time! There's also birthdays, special occassions and there's always room for a simple thank you. (Its all about gratitude, right?)

Today I'm bringing you the red floral version in the floral handmade card line I've recently created. Didn't they turn out great?! Each special, each a little different, and perfect for your loved one.

And don't forget your grads! These would make a perfect keepsake greeting card for her to cherish in her scrapbook of her special graduation day.
They're even so pretty that you could frame them and display them as artwork in your home.
Just a few ideas to get you thinking. I hope you start thinking outside the box as to what you can do with handmade cards to turn your house into a home.
Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, May 25, 2015

More from the Garden

Hello and Welcome Again!
Hope you are enjoying your long weekend and have taken a moment to honor our fallen soldiers this Memorial Day.
Doesn't May just *inspire* you?! I love spring and all the flowers and beautiful colors that nature has to offer.  With that in mind, here is another version of the floral cards that I've created for a very good customer of mine. 
As you'll see, these are the same style of greeting cards as in the previous post, but that offering different floral imagery and sentiments will offer a greater range of appreciation for her customers.  And, its just pretty! :P

This line was so much fun to create!! I love the versatility of these images and sentiments. They really can be used at any moment for any last-minute or special occasion.
I hope you've enjoyed this post and its inspired you to get stamping!
Leave a message below and let me know what you think!

Saturday, May 23, 2015

A Garden of Cards

Welcome Back.
I've been taking a break lately from my rubber stamping because I've been having to deal with life and I just haven't had the time. 
Last night I busted out the stamps and created a floral line using a number of different stamps and colors.  Pictured below are a birthday card and and just because card, perfect for any occasion.

My customer specifically asked me for floral pieces, so I hope she likes these.  What do you think? Do you have anything else to add? Leave a comment and let me know!

Friday, May 22, 2015

Questions to Spark Your Creativity

I've been trying to jump-start my creativity. A few weeks back I posted another entry which featured some great questions from a book to help get you thinking in your creative mindset.  I thought I could find some more to help get me moving in that direction again.
These questions were found at Carolyn Rubenstein's blog and are some great questions to help get you in the creative mindset.  I have edited the list to fit my needs.  My answers are provided. Try answering these questions yourself and see what you come up with!

Where would I like to explore (anywhere in the world and beyond!)?
Chichen Itza, the Mayan temples in Yucatan

With an afternoon all to myself, what would I do with it?
Ideally, take time for myself  to recharge by going for a hike or to the beach.

What is my favorite spot in this town/city/state?
Anywhere that I can see the ocean or hike in the woods away from people.

How does the weather inspire me?
In Seattle it rains and is overcast a good chunk of the year. That can be a real downer! So when we have nice weather (it's gorgeous in the summertime) I make it a priority to get out an enjoy it. That means movement! Movement allows your mind to wander, so I guess it has to do with the sun encouraging movement and brainstorming of ideas. Then again, the rain or gloom provides a nice chance to curl up and play with my stamps, too!

If I could have any superpower, what would it be and why?
The power to read minds because it's always great to know exactly what and how people think.

What is my favorite genre of art?  Now I should try to find a new artist within that genre and let them inspire my next steps.
Lately I have been ver inspired by painting. I also love paper, music and dance. I'm always trying to learn more, experience, try new things, and gather inspiration and knowledge through listening, watching and researching new artists that intrigue me.

What is distracting me and how do I create a distraction-free environment?
When I am creating, there is nothing more distracting than my cat laying across my paper project! So I set up a box for her to lay in that is close to me but still gives me the space I need. Also, I turn the computer monitor off and remove the keyboard from within arm's reach.

Do I need to declutter my mind to move forward?
Of course!

What piece of my everyday routine can I challenge myself to improve?
My breakfast.  I'm beginning a blend/smoothie breakfast in order to feel better.

Have I complimented my own creativity recently?
Not recently.

Am I relaxed?
Yes! I just got back from vacation! :D

What can I learn from little kids?
Everyone can learn sheer, unbiased and brutally honest truth from children.  (Fortunately, I'm outspoken and am always brutally honest!)

Imagine a beautiful finished product.  How can I work backwards to get there?
By keeping the finished product in mind and working on it piece by piece.

What feeling do I want to elicit in my audience?
Love and caring.  When we care, we share.

What magazines can I check out that might spur me along?
I love vintage Life magazines and Just Cards!. They help get the gears going.

What can I do to take a break from work pressures?
 When I'm feeling overwhelmed in the studio I love to go do something completely off the wall or something to get moving.

If I could create something with an unlimited budget, what would the end result be?
Wonderful. And expensive. :P

Am I organized in a sufficient manner to take on my next project?

How can I make the everyday more colorful?
I try to do something creative every day, be it either writing or creating.  Lately its been writing.

When am I happiest?
When I am calm and at peace.  Usually after a good workout or walk.

What small purchases make me most excited?
Any little treasure I can find at a thrift shop!

What is my favorite family vacation/staycation memory?
My childhood trips to Manzanita, Oregon. Before it got all touristy.

What is the scope of what I hope to accomplish next?  How can I break this down into smaller pieces?
I have so many options for what I want to accomplish next. When I plan, I make sure to set the big picture plan, break it down into smaller pieces and then just take it day by day.

Would I rather have complete freedom in creativity or a jumping board to get started?
A place to jump off of is always nice.

In the past, what constraints have sparked my creativity?
Asking myself questions like these questions have helped me; they get you thinking.  I also find researching different inspiring artists very helpful.  Their life, their work.

What is one thing I wish people knew about me?
Sometimes I don't work on art for weeks at a time and its very irritating. Not because I don't not want to work on it, but because I've either got life going on or other things that I need to address.  And sometimes I'm just not motivated to create.

How can I let go of any creative pressure I am feeling?
Realize that its just me putting pressure on myself, take a deep breath, maybe have a beer and get back to basics with it. Have fun and remember why I love my craft.  Its *my* business. I set the deadlines, not anyone else.

How can I start off in simplicity and let the details come later?
I start off with a main idea and let it all fall into place how it may.

Should I start out with a blueprint?
With paper, its often easier to start out with a sketch of the project one wants to create.

How can I wash away my own criticisms?
I cannot do so, but often times we're harder on ourselves than others are.  If I'm insecure about a project, I ask myself why.  And then I seek outside validation.  But mostly, if I don't like it, there's something wrong and I try to figure out what that is and why it bothers me on my own.

Can I place myself into a new environment to brainstorm?
Not to brainstorm, but I've found that movement and getting excercize often helps the creative mindset.

How can I feed my creative muscles?  What are they hungry for?
By visiting museums or researching other artists or playing with new textiles.

What does my dream creative studio-space look like?
A room with teal walls and white trim with two tables and brown carpeting.  A sewing machine, a computer and a closet full of art supplies.

What is my current creative attitude?
My current attitude is to do simple projects that I can get done quickly. I rubber stamp and set up an assembly line in order to get a large quantity of items completed.

Hopes this helps you all and you take some of these questions and answers to heart.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Life Hack, Level Up!

Welcome back all!
If you're like me, you have a lot of jewelry. I have a very small tabletop jewelry box and I needed some way to display my long necklaces so that I could actually see what I have. So I went to good will and found this little beauty! 
How perfect is that?!
I looked it up when I got home.
Apparently it's a scarf holder, but I gotta say, this works better for me! I even have enough room to display my rings!
Sweet! Gotta love it! I paid all of $3 for this hanger, which retails new for $24.95. What can I say?! I love good will!
What do you think? Anything interesting to add? Leave a comment and share your ideas!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Sewing a Vintage-Style Apron

If you read this blog on a regular basis, you know that I have a passion for anything pinup or vintage. I want to share that passion with you, so I'm expanding this blog from just papercrafts to my other creative endeavors as well such as sewing and vintage hunting/finding.

Check out this adorable vintage-style apron I created the other week! I found the vintage pattern and cute fabric at Hobby Lobby.

This is my second attempt at sewing an apron. The first one, which was about two years ago, I did not use a pattern and was a total disaster as a result (: Useful tip: use a pattern! :)  I'm so happy with how this little gem turned out. Now I can bake a cake without getting myself covered in flour and cake batter!

I plan to sew the other aprons from this pattern set when I return from Hawaii. They are the full vintage apron style, and now that I have this apron under my belt, I'm confident that I can sew them! Super fun, super easy! Got to go fabric shopping! :)

Have you sewn aprons before? What are your favorite patterns to use? Where do you purchase your cute vintage-looking fabrics? Leave a comment and let me know!


Thursday, April 23, 2015

New and Noteworthy News!

Hello All and Welcome Back!
Have you heard? One of my favorite stores EVER, Collage (in Portland), has signed a new lease and is opening a new store!  They just signed a lease for SE Division Street and will be opening this summer.
I'm so excited for these gals! What great news! I'll be zipping down to Portland to check out the new store just as soon as they open! Wahoo! Can't wait to see what they do with the store!
Check out their blog here for more news from this great company.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Spring Colors, Take 2!

Good Morning!

Here is another entry that I have created to play along at Art Impressions challenge, Spring Colors. (http://artimpressionsstamps.blogspot.com/2015/03/challenge-156-spring-colors-challenge.html?m=1)

I used the same background stamp that I used in this blog post. I love it! So retro, it just tickles me.

I used an image from the Girlfriends line, Texting BFFs - and a sentiment that comes separately.

I love how it turned out! Coloring this image with my copics was SO fun - and I've made other cards with this image (coming up) and it turns out completely differently just by changing up the colors a bit. Talk about versatility!

Leave a comment and let me know what you think.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Stay Balanced...A Chocolate in Each Hand!

Hello Crafty Friends!

I created this card for the Art Impressions Spring Colors challenge (http://artimpressionsstamps.blogspot.com/2015/03/challenge-156-spring-colors-challenge.html?m=1)

Thanks for stopping by today! I wanted to share with you a new greeting card I came up with featuring a new background stamp I purchased from the fab shop Dolce Stamps (it's called "wireworks" and created by JudiKins stamps <and I also purchased "John" from the same company - he's a mod guy and will be appearing at a later date!>) and a new image I purchased from Art Impressions (love love love their images!!!) I used the Yoga Yolanda set for this card, along with candy dots and ribbon in a coordinating color.  The background was stamped in a pale green teardrop memento pad.

This set makes me smile because I love yoga and the quote is so true! Very cute - makes me smile and very fun to color with my copics. I'm looking forward to sending this card in the mail to one of my lucky friends.

What do you think? What colors would you use with this set? Leave me a comment and let me know!

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Work/Life Balance

Yes, it's been a while since I have been able to update my blog or send out a newsletter. So sorry! I have missed you all, but what with the holidays and life, things have just been super busy. Loads has been going on (I started a new job and I have a new boyfriend) so, much to the detriment of my paper creations, I have been out of the studio for quite some time.
I gotta say (er, write) that I've been meaning to stay ahead of the game on my creations, but it just hasn't been happening. A real bummer because Valentine's Day is usually rather a big seller for handmade cards. I just haven't had the time!!!

I'm working on a life balance, but by the time I get home from my new job (I'm working downtown now and taking the bus so its early evening by the time I'm home) and have supper, its time to read for a half hour and then go to bed. I'm lucky if I even get to read!

What do you do to squeeze in some crafting time during the week?

I have been trying to piece some cards together by working on the project just a little bit at a time. Its very difficult. There simply are not enough hours in the day to do all the things that I 1) need to do; and 2) want to do. Do you ever feel like that?!

What are some creative tips and strategies you have to keep the projects moving forward during the week? I'd love to hear your thoughts!!

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