Monday, September 19, 2016

Girlfriend Gift Bags with Susan's Garden Amaryllis

Hello everyone. I hope you've had a fun or at least relaxing weekend. I spent mine with four of my gal pals at our annual crop get-away in Orlando. We always bring little goodies for one another and my contribution was handmade girlfriend gift bags, filled with necessities like hand lotion, sanitizer, lip balm and face refreshing wipes. The bags are made with the We R Memory Keepers Gift Bag Punch Board, and the papers are from Graphic 45 (A Ladies Diary and Communique). The fronts are adorned with Susan's Garden Notes Amaryllis die.

I'm featured on the Elizabeth Craft Designs blog today with a tutorial on how to make these pretty flowers using Susan's die. I hope you can join me over there.

Our annual "pile on the bed" photo. Tiffany, Cindy, Me, Sherry and Charmin. Another fun and fabulous weekend.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Creative Carte Blanche - Video Inspiration - Whimsical Shadow Box

Hi everyone. I'm super excited about this month's creative adventure hosted by Linda Ledbetter over at Creative Carte Blanche. The theme is "Video Inspiration", specifically the video below...

What an amazing, artistic, beautiful video it is. I can't stop watching it, and my eyes well up with tears every single time. Some things have this effect on artists, while others simply cannot relate. My husband, for example, watched it and got nothing out of it. Nada. He just didn't see what was so great about it. Funny how different we are, eh?

I was inspired by the overall feel of the video and the way it made me want to step into that world and wander around. When that tiger jumped onto the piano and we see the wide shot of the stage with all the surrounding tropical flowers and plants, that's when I made a soft little gasp.

My vision was to create a whimsical, fantasy-like shadow box display. Out to the garage I went to find something in my stash. I had this pretty frame (which mimics the style of the grand theatre in the video) and a configurations box which fit perfectly behind the frame.

I fussy cut gorgeous imagery from several different Graphic 45 paper collections (Safari Adventure, World's Fair, and later, some blue butterflies from Botanical Tea...remember Elton John's jacket covered in them?)

To add a touch of whimsy, I accented all the cut pieces with a silver Wink of Stella pen. Hard to see here, but this added a slight shimmery sparkle around the edges.

That sky in the video. My goodness I wish I could recreate it. It was beyond gorgeous. I cut a piece of watercolor cardstock to fit into my shadow box (around 6" x 8") and swirled Stormy Sky Distress Ink in random areas.

Then Wild Honey in the open areas. Did you notice how the clouds weren't white in the video? They're a golden orangy-brown. I rubbed a little Rusty Hinge along the bottoms of my clouds.

Then a bunch of spritzes of water, plus some Antique Bronze Mica Spray for shimmer.

The colors melded and flowed nicely. This is a close-up of one small section.

I have to admit, I experimented quite a bit before finding that feel I was looking for. Here's my rejects. I even tried Yupo to see if I could get an interesting outcome. Nope. Scary.

After adhering my watercolor background into the back of the box, I layered in some hot air balloons with several layers of foam tape. The tiger is glued to the inside of the configuration box's lid.

I removed the lid to work with the other elements. Colored stars in a daytime sky? Yes please. Remember the stars hanging from the ceiling in the video? Then some tropical foliage and flower layered into the lower right corner, each one with foam tape for dimension.

Then I started going crazy and forgot to take photos along the way, but I think you get the point. I added some elements behind the box lid and others in front. I also enhanced the colors of my cut-apart pieces with bright Distress inks to really make them pop.

My pretty frame needed some antiquing, so I rubbed some Metallic Lustre on the raised edges. 

I glued the frame to the box with strong glue, then continued to shape and layer elements to the frame like those blue butterflies and more tropical flowers. I should mention that I painted the sides of the configurations box with an antique gold paint.

Here's another look at the finished piece. 

Now it's your turn to join us in this fun challenge! Be sure to upload your art to the Creative Carte Blanche September Adventure page here.

Thanks for stopping in today. Have a fabulous weekend!

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Whimsical Haunted Village

What an incredibly fun weekend I had creating this Whimsical Haunted Village. I think I used every Tim Holtz/Sizzix Halloween die I own, plus every Village die set. I love how the accessory dies like the Surf Shack, Cottage, and Rooftops allow me to be as creative as possible to build a unique village like this.

Rather than the expected creepy and dark Halloween scene, I opted for a whimsical touch. I've incorporated Graphic 45's fantastic Hallowe'en in Wonderland papers with the new Village Manor die to build the main structure in my village. The new Twisted Edge die works well on its side to create spooky branches in the background. I simply die cut it twice and flipped it and trimmed it so each one looks a little different on each side of the manor. Tim's new Wicked Metal Adornment (spider charm) works well as a creepy decoration over the front door.

I created custom steps following the same basic construction as the base in the Village Dwelling die. 

My second structure is the Village Brownstone, mixed with some accents from the Village Cottage die. You can probably identify some of the older dies I've incorporated here, too, like the Branch Tree, On the Fence Edge, and Autumn Gatherings. (I snuck in a little paper from last year's Graphic 45 Halloween release "Rare Oddities" for this house, too.)

Tim's new Pumpkin Pieces and Broomsticks are a bit large in scale for the village, but since mine is a whimsical Hallowe'en in Wonderland, I thought they were perfect! Out of proportion makes perfect sense here. The base of this house has been created with a texture folder to resemble a cobblestone effect.

My third structure is made from the Village Dwelling, plus some parts from the Surf Shack. Tim's new Boneyard Bones are perfect on the front porch. The bats coming out of the chimney are from Tim's new Mixed Media Halloween Thinlits set. I've attached them to a thin strip of clear plastic (from Sizzix cutting plates packaging). The roof, of course, is made with the Rooftops die and some black Kraft Core, sanded for a distressed shingle effect.

Older dies like Gothic Boo and the crow (movers and shapers) are worked into this design, along with some swirls from the Festive Greenery die. (I told you I used a bunch of different dies.)

Flickering battery-operated tea lights sit inside each house to give a nice eerie glow. You can find these in a two-pack in Dollar Tree.

Thanks for stopping in today. I guess it's no surprise I LOVE all the Village dies. I'm totally and utterly addicted to them!

I'll be teaching this Whimsical Haunted Village class in Jacksonville, Florida at Crafting at the Nest, Saturday September 24th. If you're in the area and would like to join us, please contact Cindy Bosnyak at or phone her at 904-838-8151.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Fall Candle Stand with Susan's Garden Notes

Hi and Happy Monday everyone. Thanks for stopping in. Today I'm featured on the Elizabeth Craft Designs blog with a Fall home decor piece, using several of Susan's Garden Notes dies. I hope you get a chance to check it out. I've got an easy-to-follow tutorial that I think will make you rush out to the craft store and buy a flameless candle!

Learn how to shape the Marigold, Mini Chrysanthemums, and Woodland Leaves. 

Saturday, August 27, 2016

New Updates to my Calendar

Hi Everyone. I've got a busy couple of months coming. Did you know I now have a Calendar tab at the top of my blog. See it? If you click there, you'll see what's coming up and where I'll be teaching. I update this calendar regularly, so I'll be sure to post more details as I have them.

You'll see I'll be traveling to the Carolinas this October teaching these...

Soon I'll be posting my Haunted Village class! So stay tuned!!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

New Safari Adventure Card Tutorial is Up! Plus some Florida fun to share.

You may recall from my social media posts in recent weeks that I've been making lots of great projects with Graphic 45's Safari Adventure collection. Starting today, I've posted a new tutorial in my Etsy shop. It's a four-card set tutorial for any gender, any occasion and any age.

You can find all the details for this tutorial in my Etsy shop. The tutorial shows how to make two 5" x 7" cards, one 4 1/2" x 6 1/2" card, and one 6" x 6" pop-up easel card. My tutorials come with step-by-step directions and clear photos of each step. Check it out when you get a moment.

I've been doing some fun projects in local Florida stores also...

At Violettes Scrapbook Store in Lakeland, we created this chunky Summer album with Voyage Beneath the Sea.

My teaching experience at Violettes is ALWAYS so awesome! What a fantastic store. This was a fun class to teach and such a great group of ladies. I can't wait to return with more Graphic 45 projects in 2017.

Love these gals!

Jamie was my helpful assistant at Violettes in July. I was happy to have some time with her before she left for college.

Two weekends ago, I taught two fun Graphic 45 classes at Scraporium in Lutz, Florida for the first time. Another wonderful and busy scrapbook store with all my favorite things! 

We created this Safari Adventure box with mini album inside...

and this Voyage Beneath the Sea ivory shadow box.

I met so many new friends and saw some familiar faces in these classes. 

I finally met my fellow Florida friend who I've known on social media for a long time, Sue Waters. 

This past Friday, I taught my Friday Follies monthly group how to make this passport sized Enchanted Forest mini album. 

This group of friends has been with me for several years. Some have come and gone, but most of these girls are the core group. We always have a great time every month! They keep me humble, and they keep me laughing. We're quite a crew, and our Follies title fits us to a T.

No doubt, I've been quite busy. And I LOVE every minute. Currently, I've got 8 classes on my books between now and the end of November. Stay tuned for details! Now I'm off to cut more paper...

Monday, August 15, 2016

Fall Birthday Card with Susan's Garden Notes

Hello everyone and happy Monday. I'm featured today over on the Elizabeth Craft Designs blog with a pretty birthday card with a bit of Fall flair. What better combination than Graphic 45 papers and Susan's Garden Notes dies? I've used Graphic 45's Hallowe'en in Wonderland paper with the pretty pumpkins as my background, and mixed three flowers (Marigold, Sunflower and Aster) in Susan's new "Potted" die. I hope you get a chance to check out my tutorial today!

Thanks for stopping in. Have a wonderful day!

(p.s. this is for my sweet Mom's birthday tomorrow. shhhh...)