Monday 30 June 2008

Foliage Fabric ATCs

Just a quick post (again!) - these are a set of fabric ATCs I made last night for an exchange I am in with Annie Laing and Cait Gordon. The theme is foliage. I have stamped text on commercial leaf patterned fabric which I have embellished with glitter dimensional paint, moon shadow sprays and Rust Tintz.

Tomorrow I am heading off to Wiluna with my work but I'll be back by Wednesday night. See you then...

Sunday 29 June 2008

Think Monday - Think ATC

Once again I am writing saying that it is a while since I have participated in a "Think Monday Think ATC" theme! This week the theme/challenge is to incorporate a ticket so I am using an ATC that I made for an "Industria" technique ATC exchange back in November 2006. I love the result of this technique although making these ATCs was the only time I have actually done it!! Note to self - do some more. I happened to stamp one of my images on a ticket, hence my use of this ATC!

And here are a couple of lovely handmade cards I received this week - coincidentally both from women with AL as their initials!! Freaky!

(By Ann Lawton)

Saturday 28 June 2008

What - Saturday already?

Good grief - where did this week go?? Can't find a satisfactory answer myself!

This week I finished my Calendar Girls June postcard. Below is the calendar page that we used this month as our inspiration. It didn't really do much for me when I tried out various ideas with fabric so I decided to work with card stock, patterned vellum, ribbon and stamping this month. Thank goodness we only use the picture as a starting point and we don't have to replicate it - that colour scheme is not one I find attractive. There are more details here about my postcard.

During the week I also received back my Itty Bitty (three inch square) collages from a Creative Chix online exchange. I am not sure how I will display them - I originally envisaged displaying them altogether on a canvas in three rows of three but now I think I might make a little book out of them so that each collage is it's own statement!

(Clockwise from top left - Lyn Avedikian, Mary Zimany, Connie Armitage,
Joan Lawrence, Maria Garcia and Patti Gramza)

(From top to bottom - Hope Clinchot, me and Jo-Ann Reichert)

Maria's piece came separately and was accompanied by a lovely little tag book and this sweet teddy thank you card!

Saturday 21 June 2008

Post 301 - Inspiration Banners

I noticed just now as I signed in that this will be my 301st post and that my blog has had 33343 pages visited (pity I didn't manage to look when it was exactly 33333!!) - made me think how important this blog has become to me and how much I love all the wonderful connections and friendships that have come from something as simple as a blog!! It is all pretty incredible I think. Thank you from the bottom of my heart to everyone that visits me here!!

This week disappeared rather quickly - I forgot to say I was going to be away with work for a couple of days and of course having Mum and Josh here at home means I am wanting to maximise my time with them. I had a recreation day yesterday so that I could finish my "Inspiration" banner pieces (I was making all the "R" pieces) and have a relaxing day with Mum. Happy to report it was successful on all fronts!

These are the 11 banners I made - each person participating specified their colour preferences so that is why there is so much variety.

Monday 16 June 2008

Monday Night!

And here we are at the start of another week - is it just me or is this year flying by?
June is a busy month in this family - lots of birthdays, including my SIL Mary-Anne's big 60th! This is a canvas "birthday card" I made for her - I can share it now that her birthday is past. Unfortunately I didn't manage a very good scan or photo but I am sure you will get the general idea - apologies for the reflected glare - the paints used are Golden's Payne's Gray and Quinacridone/Nickel Azo Gold with some acrylic glazing medium. The branch/leaves in the background are a new stamp (to me at least) from Hero Arts - it looks fantastic stamped into wet paint! The text image is Hero Arts too and the key was a gift from my wonderful friend Jude who gives me all the wonderful stuff that she has decided she doesn't need in her much less cluttered life (significantly less cluttered than mine!)

And happy birthday (for Saturday) too to my youngest sister, Kathryn and to our granddaughter Skye (3 today)!!

My Mum arrives on the train tonight (she will be pooped I am sure after travelling 1000 kilometres by bus and then train today) - we just got a call to say the train was delayed an hour by freight trains. Can't wait to see her - it has been a year since I had any real time with her! And it is her birthday too this week.

Sunday 15 June 2008

Mixed Media Monday - By The Sea

I couldn't resist posting something (even if rather late in the week!) for the latest Mixed Media Monday theme of "By the Sea". Living so far inland for the last nearly 15 years has made me appreciate the sea even more than I already did!

The one at the top is nearly A4 size and incorporates a page from an atlas, a shell patterned napkins, lots of ocean/ship themed cancelled postage, an old button, an anchor charm and a coil of twine and of course inks and stamping. The Passporto image is one of my favourite Oxford Impressions stamps. I don't know why really but I am drawn to it a lot!! Maybe because it makes me think of the possibilities that come from travel. I really like the male image that goes with it and I'm thrilled that Suzanne has used it as a separate image on the latest plate of stamps. It is a perfect size for ATCs etc.

And this one was originally made for a Stamping & Papercraft (now called Cardmaking, Stamping & Papercraft - presumably to strengthen the current crossover/growth of cardmaking by scrapbookers?) challenge to use the small little silver tin with clear lid in an innovative way. I had a lot of fun with this one and used faux verdigris paint, copper mesh, wire, beads etc as well as a heat transfer onto the lid (of a black and white photocopy of an old-fashioned compass. The tin has a thick layer of beeswax inside to anchor the little shells etc. The second picture is very dark unfortunately - I just couldn't get it right!

I'm making ok (meaning ok but not fabulous) progress with my "inspiration" banner triangles - they are taking a long time to make but that is because I am dithering about finding perfect pieces of paper, paint, ink, images and embellishments for each person's preferred colour schemes! I'll be getting a whole lot more decisive today!!

Yesterday I also finished reading a great book - it was called "if nobody speaks of remarkable things" by Jon McGregor. It was his first novel and really is remarkable - the attention to detail and the beautiful way of capturing people's self-talk. When I borrowed this one from the library last week I also took out the only other one that had by him so I am looking forward to starting that one now (but after the banners are finished)...

Friday 13 June 2008

Think Monday Think ATC - Round

The theme this week at Think Monday Think ATC is "round" so here is an ATC I made (some time ago!) that uses a gorgeous little slide by Collections (with a round centre), a photo stamp image by Oxford Impressions and the cutest thin red sticky tape! I love this stuff. I also love the fabric that I've used as a background on the scanner - it is very "me"!

This weekend I am making eleven triangles for an "INSPIRATION" banner swap - I am making the "R" triangles. There are eleven of us participating, we are all making one of the letters that make up the word so that we all end up with a banner that incorporates one triangle from each person and which spells out "inspiration". We have all specified our preferred colour scheme as well. Quite complicated when you actually settle down to do it! I am planning on making some from fabric and some from papers/cardstock so that it doesn't become boring! I'll post pictures when I'm finished.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday 12 June 2008

A Purple Missus Stunner!

Today's mail bought this absolutely stunning Calendar Girl Postcard from Lynda Monk (Purple Missus). It was my month to receive Lynda's postcard in the Calendar Girl Exchange and I had seen it on the CG blog but in real life it is even better!! Read about the techniques and symbolism here - it is well worth it.
And this was the second day in a row I had received overseas mail that had been opened and inspected by Australian Customs! Both times there was, of course, no problem with the contents so the envelope was resealed, with an explanatory pamphlet included and then delivered, but I can honesty say in all the years I have received international mail this has probably only happened to me a dozen times, so two days in a row is particularly noticeable!!

Wednesday 11 June 2008

A Fabulous Fibre ATC from Kiwi Carole!

The good mail continues - today I received this beautiful ATC trade from Carole. It is made of silk paper, oil sticks, angelina and stitching. What's more it came wrapped in lovely orange silk paper (fusion) with a lovely yarn tying it all up. The envelope (which was a bit lumpy) was opened up by Australian Customs but they sealed it up nicely and sent it on safe and sound, so no complaints!

Good news in this part of the world - my son will be home from uni for a few days next week and my Mum is coming to stay for a couple of weeks! I love family time! Lots of smiling happening here...Zach is smiling too as his exams are finished and he is counting down the weeks to the end of the semester. Year 12 and the looming TEE are a trial for everyone I think!!

Tuesday 10 June 2008

Wednesday Stamper - Eyelets

Just a quick little post tonight - I have been busy working on various projects so haven't had time to blog :((

But the current theme over at Wednesday Stamper is eyelets (at least until tomorrow when the new challenge will be posted) so I thought I could manage that! These are both pieces I have made for various challenges in Stamping & Papercraft magazine. I love the Tin Can Mail tag image on the first one (which has just one large eyelet in the tag!). The circle of bugs is a Stamps Happen stamp.

I have had great mail this week already - Quilting Arts arrived yesterday and today, the new Oxford Impressions "The Family Man" plate arrived! Can't wait to get it cut up and ready to stamp.

Saturday 7 June 2008

Mixed Media Monday - Bingo

Seems I am having trouble managing to be a regular participant in the various weekly challenge blogs this year! BUT tonight I made an entry for this week's Mixed Media Monday as the theme is "Bingo" and I have a favourite bingo stamp that I haven't actually used a lot!

The background is a scrap piece of paper that I used to clean off all the extra paint I had on my brush last week when painting a canvas. I spread the paint really thin by scraping it with a discarded credit card. Nice and bright - deep hot pink and orange! This was my first go at painting swirls freehand using my new favourite paint - Golden's Iridescent Bright Gold (Fine) Liquid Acrylic. I'll use a finer brush next time.

And something I have been meaning to show ever since I got back from Melbourne - this is a prize I won on the wonderful Rachel Greig's blog - terrific products, and included in there, although not very visible in this scan, are a couple of sheets of photo booth images.

PS I just came across this site (about women artist entrepreneurs) as a result of following a link from Alicia Paulson's blog - I have only read Alicia's "story" so far but I will definitely be going back there and working my way through all of the stories of those women - fascinating stuff!!

Friday 6 June 2008


Sorry, I forgot to mention I was going to be away with work this week. It sure made this week fly by despite lots of cold weather and grey skies in our part of the world...

So on a cheerful note, here is a little birdhouse hanger I made a little while back for Stamping & Papercraft (now called Cardmaking, Stamping & Papercraft). It uses products from the 7gypsies range (rub-ons and papers) and from Collections (house and bird chipboard shapes).

Looking forward to this weekend - I have lots of arty commitments and, as I stopped by the library on the way home tonight, I now have five fabulous looking novels if I decide to just stay in bed and read for a few hours!

PS I haven't got tired of birds yet!

Monday 2 June 2008

Take It Further - May

I can't remember whether I have blogged much about the May "Take It Further" Challenge but Sharon had challenged us all to think about what we call ourselves artistically speaking. Sharon says that if you can't define what it is you do, then how can you expect others to understand or respect what you do. I have been thinking about it on and off all month but I was struggling to come up with anything that translated into a fabric, paper or mixed media format and I had just about got to the point where I was going to drop out of the whole thing (especially as the alternative challenge was a pastel coloured palette which didn't grab me at all).

BUT this morning I woke up and knew immediately what the problem was - I hate labels and I don't really feel much inclination or need to really explain just what it is that I do when I disappear into my craft or sewing rooms. So this is my response to this month's challenge - I've painted a piece of canvas, stamped it with flourishes and written out my thoughts using my favourite white gel pen (remind me next time that canvas is not the best surface to write on!). The canvas has been machine stitched to a black backing.

And I feel liberated! May is finished and I didn't compromise on my own thinking just to get something made for the challenge. Now for June, which I think is even harder - this time Sharon has asked us to make our challenge piece on the idea of "stories that are and stories that are possible". She has used the concept of a fabric stash and all the stories and possibilities contained in those fabrics and I for one, may just have to use that as my inspiration...And once again the alternative challenge is a colour palette that doesn't in any way inspire me - or at least not at this stage.

And now for a bit of fun - here is my May piece with alternative hue/saturation effects! I like all of them better than my original!

A Little Book of Birds

(From top left, clockwise - pages by Keron Lee, Jo Wholohan,
Shirley Howard, Abby Evans, Jacky Williams and Kasha Rolley)

While over in Melbourne for the Art Retreat, a group of us participated in an "art party" one night at Keron's and we all made little bird themed pages to exchange with each other. We were intending to all get our book covers made and the books bound that night but some of us, including me, were a bit too dazed (or excited to be meeting so many people that had previously only been names and fellow bloggers) to get it all done!

I will get mine finished sometime soon but in the meantime here are the nine little pages of sweetness that will form my book. They all have some space on the left side for binding and I am still trying to decide what my binding will be. I tend to use big rings usually as I like my books to open up flat for display.

(From top to bottom, pages by me, Abby Evans and Gaye Todd)

And here is a photo of the lights that can be seen from Keron's front verandah at late dusk. What a beautiful view! I think I would be camped out on the verandah most of the time.

Sunday 1 June 2008

May Calendar Girl Postcard

If you have been reading my blog for a while you will know that I am participating in a postcard exchange with 12 other women scattered over the UK, US & Australia. We are each exchanging one postcard a month for a year so that by the end of the year we will all have a postcard from everyone else. Our postcards are inspired by the monthly picture in a friendship calendar we are all using.

This month this was the calendar page and below is the postcard I made for Sharon. I used the daisy as my inspiration as I didn't find the colour scheme very appealing. If you want to know a bit more about the process I used see here. The postcard is based on a decorator napkin/paper serviette. I really want to get my June postcard made earlier in the month this time as I only finished May last night, which was too close to the deadline for peace of mind!