Sunday, October 31, 2010

Masking to the extreme: A Studio L3 Compendium challenge

This week began with a peek at Linda's blog, Studio L3, to learn about the newest Compendium challenge.

Really, it's supposed to begin with work, but I sometimes can't help first dropping in at Studio L3. So, despite being responsible for more than a few important projects, my brain was already busy thinking of Distress inks and masks and page 61 of Tim Holtz's compendium very early this week.

Those work projects did end up dragging me in and I couldn't get to crafting (not that I had a fantastic idea, anyway).

Then, on Wednesday, I discovered a real problem. A really wonderful and exciting problem: My Fairy Godsister sent me Tim Holtz's new rosette die!

Our house is now full of rosettes. Solid colored, designed, flocked, cut, torn, distressed, inked and altered rosettes. Honestly. I have six sitting on my work desk behind me. Six.

There are more ... those are only the ones I can see from my chair.

You'll hardly be surprised, then, to find out that I love this new toy. Love it like I love quick-dry adhesive and embossing powder. Love it like I might break the arm of anyone who tries to take ... you see where I'm going.

Rosette excitement overtook our house and I completely forgot about the challenge this week. Hmm. Strike that: I remembered the challenge, but for me it became the rosette challenge.

What had begun as a desire to create a superb masking project became a devotion to all things rosette. Which is part of the reason I have so many extra rosettes sitting around.

The clock was probably at about 2 or 3 p.m. today when I realized ... not only am I approaching a deadline with no completed project to show (again) ... but I also was working on the Wrong Project.

First the rosettes taunted me ... You can't use us, you can't use us ... because I'd already thought up ideas for them that didn't include masking. I just couldn't get my brain to break out of the circus.

So, I pulled out some masks and blue ink and thought ... I'll just do something in blue with cog masks and snowflake punches and Ahoy! a nice wintery-like masked project.

Then I noticed the grunge board wings I'd inked and embossed for another project, but didn't end up using. Of course, that led to thoughts of travel and adventure and journey (see the token) and I was back to rosettes. Somehow.

This rosette is trimmed so that it's roughly half size. I used core color core-dinations paper and inked it with broken china Distress ink.

Ah, and as usual I'm yakking when it's time to click "publish" so I can run over to Studio L3!

I'd only like to add that you need the rosette die. And if you don't have a Cuttlebug or Sizzix machine or Tim's new Vagabond ... get one.

Trust me. You're going to wish you owned the rosette die.

Attention: All Warrior Women!

Way back on October 12 a few of us announced the opening of The Pink Ribbon Warrior Women Blog Hop.

Each of us participating in the hop posted art to honor our muse, Sherry Goodloe, and asked you to join in the creative fun!

Eclectic Paperie sponsored our hop, and offered a fantastic prize package to the winner of the hop: Check out this post on Sherry's blog to see who won the Big Prize!

A couple of us offered up individual Prize-for-Participation promises as well: I'm one of those.

Today you're here to find out who won, and what she won, because my blog candy was a surprise.

OK, with a little help from My Guy who kindly pulled a name from a hat full of possible winners, I'm happy to announce that Tracy Evans is the winner of the Not a Moment to Spare Warrior Woman blog candy prize!

And what did she win, you ask? Well, a gift certificate worth $25 at eclectic Paperie, of course!

After all, eclectic Paperie supported our blog hop, just like so many of our friends and family members support our cancer-fighting friends.

Which means I did a little pay back for a good and kind deed!

And, no, I did not choose Tracy Evans because we share a first name (spelled correctly, to boot). Her name was pulled fairly and honestly by My Guy who has much higher moral standards than myself.

Thanks to everyone who participated! Finally, Tracy, please send me the e-mail address to which I can send your eclectic Paperie gift certificate!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Before copics: A Drunken Stampers Challenge

Wow, what a lot of superb creations we Drunken Stampers got to see for Halloween! We were sure you'd do the holiday justice, and there was no disappointment!

Which means we're positive you'll do a fantastic job pushing aside the Copics and taking a trip with us in the ol' Way Back machine.

That's right folks, this week's Drunken Stampers challenge is Before Copics! I know what you're thinking: "Oh no! I started making cards after finding Copics ... there's no before for me."

But, you only have to go further back than some. Maybe your before was last year, perhaps it was 20 years ago ... whatever you used to color stamped or printed images or hand-drawn images prior to Copic mania.

Personally, as you see here, I was a Sharpie and FaberCastell girl. I was that last year, 10 years ago and a lot further back than that, too. Way back when I was stealing the Sharpies and FC colored pencils from my dad to that I could color furniture, pets, walls and, occasionally, paper.

Some of us are just going to be forced to go Way Back, is all I'm saying.

You proved yourself last week, let's see you come through again before midnight Friday, Nov. 5!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Halloween: A Drunken Stampers Challenge

You have another eight days to buy candy for Trick or Treaters, but only seven to complete a creation for this week's Drunken Stampers Challenge: Halloween!

Some of us are Christmas people (I'm a ho, ho, ho schmuck), others are lovers of all things Thanksgiving (Aubry, my best friend is a one of these), and many find Valentine's Day to be the pinnacle of once-a-year joys (I'm not aware of anyone who fits into that category, but you and I know these sappy suckers exist).

And then there are our spooky, boo-worshing, scary-adoring cohorts who live for black and orange and all things bloody.

My friend, an amazing, down-to-earth woman, is the person for whom I made my creation this week. She also is one of those people who makes everyone around her wonder if Halloween really is the best holiday of them all.

She hosts a yearly Halloween party, and invites everyone for Puss-filled Punch (now you wish to be invited, don't you?), costume and pumpkin carving contests and delicious homemade treats (a few tricks, too, with finger-shaped cookies and other gooey-body-part-emulating foods).

Anyhow, you see here a shadow box celebrating her love of Halloween and willingness to let all of us into her home to help party away the night of fright.

Come to think of it, maybe she lets us in to create an appropriate Halloween-y atmosphere: After all, we, her friends, are still fun after a few cocktails ... but admittedly do tend towards a general lack of adult respectability.

So, is our being invited a trick or a treat? I guess it depends on who ends up hanging from the chandelier this year ... could be her this time around ...

Take a minute yourself, and hang from your own real or metaphoric chandelier ... then create the perfect piece for the Drunken Stampers' Halloween Challenge!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Dabber resist: A Studio L3 Compendium challenge

Apparently posting my week 17 Studio L3 challenge so late that I didn't have time to chatter left me desperate to talk.

So, I didn't waste any time today finishing my job and household chores so that I could craft without interruption (or guilt).

All of that paid off with this funky piece of Boo-rific-ness.

For this week's Compendium of Curiosities Challenge we have been tasked with trying out the technique on page 37: Dabber resist.

We're not supposed to share instructions, so I won't, but I'll mention that I used a different color of dabber paint than our Mr. Holtz recommends.

And, unless you tell me differently, I think that my Martha Stewart Halloween-y fence still looks just as cool as if I'd used the preferred paint color.

This week my Distress inks include broken china, dusty concord and fired brick. Again, I'm happy with the result. It's happy and colorful, but still a bit dark and spooky.

The archival ink moon is an old Stampin' Up stamp that is a part of a celestial set my sister gave to me many years ago. It's a very cool set which I can assure you has seen plenty of use. The "Boo" stamp also is an older stamp, from Making Memories magnet sets, but it's new to me as I only recently found this set on eBay for $5 (yes, $5 freakin' bucks).

Obviously there's a bit of glittery embossing, some edge distressing and even a little mallet-made cracked embossing from a Holtz Texture Fade folder.

Honestly, now that I've made it this far I have to admit that I'm clearly not feeling terribly jovial and witty today.

Perhaps that's what comes from focusing all day on mundane, required tasks ... depression.

Ah well, I promise the challenge over at L3 is a great time and a fantastic way to learn more about stuff you already own and stuff you've probably never tried.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Fragments and deadlines: A Studio L3 Compendium challenge

I'm done! I'm done! With nine whole minutes to go!

See you again tomorrow at Studio L3 for the EIGHTEENTH Compendium of Curiosities challenge!

And, you lucky dogs, no long post to read this week as I'm so close to deadline there's no time to yammer ...

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Food: A Drunken Stampers Challenge

Bring together two of life's greatest activities with this week's Drunken Stampers Challenge: Not only will you get to craft away, but it's all about the food this week! Woohoo!

Don't limit yourself to the obvious (and lately popular cupcakes), think fruits and vegetables and holiday treats like pumpkin pie!

Consider spatulas or appliances or even a handful of gorgeous recipe cards!

The creation you see here today is a folder sent to my sister with a recipe and special packet of spices -- the recipe is for a German soup that's been a favorite in my family for years.

I'm not ready to share the recipe yet, nor the neat tabbed cards or pockets from the inside: But that second part is only because I forgot to take photos of those elements. That's been happening a lot lately.

Fortunately I've got these photos of the outside: The front and back. Each side has a background of Die Cuts With a View designer card stock with glitter.

The "recipes" and "from my kitchen" framed phrases, along with the supremely cool vintage-look pot, are provided by the Cricut From My Kitchen cartridge (if you own a Cricut, but not that cartridge ... you're missing out on some seriously great stuff).

Anyhow, take a look at your craft space and decide what sort of edible delight would most benefit from a bit of crafty immortalizing!

Then, craft a beautiful piece, link it up at the Mr. Linky before midnight October 22 and wait for accolades from impressed viewers!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

SURPRISE! You're here for ...

Those of you who've been with me since last week have, I'm sure, been wringing your hands and fidgeting while trying to guess today's big announcement!

Well, you made it to the Big Day! You're here for The Pink Ribbon Warrior Women Blog Hop!

Are you a Warrior Woman? Perhaps not, but you definitely know someone who is! It's your mom or your sister or your grandmother or your boyfriend or maybe even a coworker (What? "Boyfriend" confused you? Pink Ribbons stand for everyone who is suffering from or has suffered from breast cancer -- a disease that is especially common among women {thus, Warrior Women}, but does in fact, unfortunately, attack our men, too).

So, we're celebrating the healing journey of our artist friend Sherry Goodloe. She's recovering from her own recent surgery, and has only recently learned that she won't have to endure chemo or radiation! Sherry is our official Warrior Woman Muse for the hop you're now reading about!

She is someone who we love and admire, and so is the prefect person to lead us on this journey to honor those facing a fight against breast cancer: Friends, loved ones or YOU!

Our art is intended to honor each and every person who has, is, or ever will fight this battle.

Please join us at each of our participating blogs, where you'll hopefully find inspiration for your own art. Leave comments everywhere as many of the participating Pink Ribbon Warrior Women blog hostesses also are offering candy.

So, here's where you are and where you're going ... 

Tracy Jacobs (you are Here!)

And, as Linda so aptly puts it, "Our fabulous sponsor is eclectic Paperie!"

So, what are you waiting for? Visit each of the blogs listed above and then head out to create your own artwork to celebrate the Pink Ribbon Warriors!

Share your piece here: Flickr Warrior Women Blog Hop Gallery.

You can dedicate your art to someone specific or many someone specifics, and we'd especially appreciate it if you'd take the time to use the gallery's "Add a Description" field where you can tell us about the person to whom your creation is dedicated!

To be entered into the prize package drawing, you'll need to get your entry in no later than midnight October 30. Our Warrior Woman muse, Sherry, will choose a winner on October 31!

"Winner?" you ask? Why yes! Daisy at eclectic Paperie (hello? our fabulous sponsor!), will send the winner the prize package you see above and, she said, "I'll also include a pail full of assorted Stickles with this. Every girl needs some sparkle and glitter in her stamping arsenal, right?"

Later this week I'll be posting more about my own creation for this Extra Stupendously Super Special Blog Hop ... in the meantime, until midnight October 30, you'll have to guess about the blog candy from This Very Blog Right Here (which you'll only be eligible to win after commenting below and entering your art at Flickr Warrior Women Blog Hop Gallery)!

One final, but very important note: Please, please ensure that you take a second to mark your Warrior Women photo as "Public" on Flickr otherwise we won't be able to ooh and aah over your amazing work! Don't worry, though, making this single piece of art public won't effect any other items you've uploaded on Flickr.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Monochromatic: A Drunken Stampers Challenge

Whether you're still Thinking Pink, or you're ready to Bathe in Blue, this week's Drunken Stampers challenge will give you something to wrap your favorite color around: Monochromatic!

My single-color piece is a wall hanging with a leaf design cut in various sizes to create a nested effect.

The tones of green, courtesy of an eyes closed I Choose This One finger pointing from My Guy, is a bright and happy piece which I'm actually looking forward to hanging at my office.

After all, Fall colors are fantastic, but overcast skies can turn to overcast emotions if you don't have some summertime colors around.

In fact, even an office in summertime feels a little overcast what with those weird fluorescent lights.

Nothing weird about the light in your craft space, though! I've seen the gorgeous creations you make!

Which means I'm on pins and needles awaiting your monochromatic creation that needs to be posted on the Mr. Linky, here, before midnight October 15!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Wrinkle free distress: A Studio L3 Compendium challenge

This week's Compendium of Curiosities Challenge is actually last week's challenge since we got a "pass" from Linda.

Of course, the pass was supposed to benefit our peers, our lucky peers, our enjoying life more than us right now lucky peers. That's right ... it's the Holtz Cruisers. I call them that, not because they are scantily clad on Reno's own Red Light District, lovingly known as Fourth Street, but because they're off on a wonderful crafty cruise with Mr. Holtz.

And perhaps scantily clad. How would I know? Either way I assume there is little in the way of Red Light District behavior. But again. How would I know?

And why would I care? I wouldn't. I don't. I only care that this week's two week long deadline has been a joy. For the first time since I began this little journey I've tried the technique of the week from Holtz's book in a handful of ways.

And I learned a helluva lot more about the technique this week than I do usually. Now, I'm certainly not asking Linda to start giving us two weeks every week (unless she'd be OK with me asking, in which case I'm freaking begging).

But, I'm definitely going to have to remember to go back to each and every one of these techniques, myself, and try them again. Because I clearly need more time to be creative.

Anyhow, we were allowed two weeks this time. Which means I got to create several projects related to the technique Wrinkle Free Distress.

That actually brings me to something else: What the hell is Tim talking about "Wrinkle Free?" Did any of you manage to get anything without wrinkles? Perhaps he meant it in the more slang or cliched term of wrinkle free meaning "an absence of problems."

He'd be wrong there, too. Despite my now deep love of our Mr. Holtz and especially his trinket things (which I recommend you buy even if you don't like his techniques, because the flowers and swivel clasps and trinket pins ... they're easily high enough quality to use in a variety of techniques, not only on delicate Don't Touch! art).

He'd be wrong in the cliched use because this technique does require a small ability to get over the "oops" didn't mean to do that, moments.

Alright, so back to the subject: I made a lot of projects the past couple of weeks. And now you're stuck lookin' at 'em.

There's the 1/2 Full piece. It's OK. I like it, especially the "1/2" stamp I used on the top left. That's an actual vintage railroad stamp! How cool is that?

Then I punched flowers from one of the papers covered in wrinkle free distress. And tore another one in half to create a, ahm, something. I forgot to photograph the entire, finished piece, so there's no proof, but I think that piece turned out very nicely in the end.

Finally, I made the Postal Bird last night. It's my favorite so far with this technique. It's also the first break into the Holtz idea-ology embellishments I picked up in Idaho a few weeks ago.

Apparently I wanted all of those things so badly that by the time I had them ... I was overwhelmed. You can damn sure bet that you'll see a lot more of those from me in the future! I adore the little metal bits!

Um, what's remaining to blather about ... ah, yes, the last photo is only an example meant as a reminder to me and you: Use the techniques of our Mr. Holtz and make them your own. He says it in his book, and he clearly means it ... play with his ideas!

Whew. I'm done. Aren't you glad I had two whole weeks? I know you are. You would have been done reading my silly blog 15 minutes ago if I'd been given only one week.

Maybe one week is best.

On the other hand ... I still have more than 24 hours for this week's two-week challenge ends ...

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Get to know a Warrior Woman

You might not realize it, but you've probably met one or two Warrior Women.

Just look around a little bit and you'll find them: Their costumes come in business suit size 14 and sarong one size fits all.

Sometimes you'll see them lazily riding a bike across the Black Rock Desert. Other times you'll find a Warrior Woman next to you at the local craft mart piling adhesives and stamps and Tim Holtz supplies into her basket.

In fact, you might have met a very important Warrior Woman right here in Blog Land: Our own Sherry Goodloe!

Now, since October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and because we wish to honor of our friend Sherry Goodloe -- and all our loved ones who have, are or ever will fight this battle -- I'm taking part in a Warrior Woman Blog Hop!
Mark your calendar now, so that you remember to join us, right here, Tuesday, October 12 for the Warrior Woman Blog Hop kickoff!
We'll have caramel apples, clowns and exciting details for you!

OK, probably not caramel apples or clowns, but definitely exciting details!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Think pink: A Drunken Stampers Challenge

Think pink and "Save The Boobies" to join this week's Drunken Stampers create-a-thon!

I mean, honestly, you join by Thinking Pink, but Save The Boobies makes me giggle every time I hear the phrase.

Not because there's a reason to preserve a breast if doctors say it needs to go. Instead I giggle because real "Boobies" represent the woman who dances and laughs and seeks an enlightened life. Boobies exist only in a woman who knows who she is becoming, and who is happy in that knowledge. And that woman, amazing, strong and vital, is a sexy woman.

So, it is certain that these small and large and medium and extra big centerfold fixations mean something to all of us (remember that even you guys are sometimes diagnosed with breast cancer).

But, do they mean so much that life itself is worth forfeiting? Don't be an ass.

Dance. Laugh. Seek an enlightened life. Get a breast exam.

Then join us at Drunken Stampers and call a friend to say, "I'm Thinking Pink ... I'm Saving The Boobies ... I'm saving someone I love!"

After all, we're all a bit of a boob now and then, aren't we?