Wednesday, November 27, 2013


Wednesday is here already, and it's Nellie Leeuwen from the Stampotique Designers' Challenge who is pushing us to get more Christmas cards made.  This is her challenge:
I always intend to start early making my Christmas cards. But real life often gets in the way and before I know it it's the middle of December and my Christmas cards end up being either very simple and quick or bought in a shop. So, I thought why not set a Stampotique challenge to make Christmas cards in November and force myself to really make an early start. So here is what I came up with. And, of course, I'd love to see your Christmas cards or other Christmas projects!
I have been working on a Christmas project for months, changing it each time it caught my eye in the studio.  Nellie's challenge prompted me to finish my project and to make a card to go inside.  First, my card:

This card is for my great niece Rhea Christine Wonders, who was born in October.  This will be her first Christmas!  I realize this is a pretty grown-up card for an infant, but read on.  Inside the card, I have hand-written the following message to Rhea:
Dear Sweet Rhea,
This box was made by your Great Aunt Kay and given to you on your first Christmas. I hope each year you will collect your favorite cards here--and fondly, each Christmas, remember those who gave them to you.
On the top of this box are two keepsakes for you. The first, an earring worn by your Great Grandmother Irene May Wonders. The second, a cuff link belonging to your Great Grandfather Harry Ross Wonders.
                                                                                       Love, Aunt Kay
The box is a wooden cigar box decorated with Christmas paper, ribbon and flowers, both inside and out:

The Stampotique image I have used on the card is Lissi, and I think she is *almost* as adorable as Rhea!  On the cigar box, you see "Pigtails," also from Stampotique Originals.  

I hope you will join in the fun and create something for Christmas, a card, a decoration, a gift--whatever you choose. By submitting your project, you may win one of two randomly drawn $30 gift certificates for products on the Stampotique website.  The only requirement is that you use a stamp (use of digital stamps will exclude you from the drawing).  Details here.

I appreciate your visit today.  Your visits, as well as you comments, inspire me and are sincerely appreciated.


Wednesday, November 20, 2013


It's Wednesday and, by now, you know that means the Stampotique Designers' Challenge has been posted.  The challenge calls for splats and splatters in our artwork:
Today we are challenging you to use a SPLAT! of paint somewhere on your design.  We all love to get messy once in awhile and this week is your perfect opportunity to throw on some grubby clothes and splatter that paint all over your creation. 
You may think I got carried away, but since I love splats, I used paint and a stamp to create a whole lot of color on my art journal page.  While I was picking my colors, I was reminded of a song I taught my young children to help them learn their colors.  Here it is!

The Stampotique Originals' image I used today is from one of Stampotique's newest stamp designers, Linda Peterson, who has created a whole series of stamps (with coresponding text stamps) featuring Hazel.  This one is called Dreamer.

I learned early on from one of the Stampotique Design Team members (thanks, France Papillon!) that images should be "grounded" and not appear to be floating in space.  However, when creating this journal page, I was more focused on color than grounding, so it was not until I was done that I discovered Hazel's bed was, indeed, floating.  I was now past the point of adding washi tape under the stamped image as a ground. Undaunted, I colored in the bedposts to make them appear more solid, then grabbed a gray stamp pad and my index finger and did some second generation stamping under the bedposts. Not too bad for an afterthought!

I invite you to join me in creating a piece of art today--an ATC, a scrapbooking layout, an art journal page, a postcard, or whatever you like.  The only requirement is that you use a real stamp (digi stamps will not be eligible for the drawing).  At the end of the month, there will be two $30 gift certificates from Stampotique Originals awarded randomly among those who submitted a project!

Thanks for visiting my blog today!  Both your visits and your comments are appreciated.


Wednesday, November 13, 2013


I know, twice in one day!  Stampotique Originals is sponsoring the Wicked Wednesday challenge blog this week, so I couldn't resist poking my head in to say hello to them!  Wicked Wednesday is all about ATCs, and this week "anything goes."

If you know me, you know I love putting humor into art whenever possible, and this little ATC (3-1/2" x 2-1/2") is no exception today.  The Stampotique image I used is called Spykee.  She reminds me a bit of myself when I turned 60 and had my hair cut very short and spiked it!  A bit of a rebellion, perhaps, and definitely "just a little" WICKED!  This text stamp is also from Stampotique!

Glad you stopped by today.  If you are not already a follower of this blog, I would love it if you joined today.  Subscribing by e-mail is your best option, since you get an e-mail when my blog has been updated!  Thanks, too, for leaving a comment so that I will know you were here.



Seems like I was just here, but another Wednesday and another Stampotique Designers' Challenge today!  Samantha Read is our host this week, and she has challenged us--as well as herself--to make a one-layer creation.  Here's the detail:
"Hi, Stampotiquers! I'm so excited to be your host this week and I'm inviting you to make a creation using just one layer. It doesn't necessarily have to be clean and simple, that's the challenge! I love lots and lots of layers but to achieve a sense of depth to a creation using no embellishments etc can really get you scratching your head and rubbing your chin! 
Most importantly, have fun ;)"
I have chosen to make a card poking a bit of fun at having to deal with all the different languages encountered on the blogs of contributing Stampotique members!  While most of the international sites have a conversion option, allowing the reader to translate the original language into English (or other language), the translation is often less than perfect. Sometimes, I just scratch my head and think the tranlation to English might just as well have been to Greek!

Here's my card:

I printed the title directly onto my card on my computer, then masked that space with a scrap of paper.  Next, I stamped Stampotique Originals' Miss Snottie onto another scrap, cut her out, then used that to mask a space for me to stamp the image again directly onto the card.  With the masks in place, I used a large (unintelligible) text stamp for my background.

If you would like to play along with the challenge this week, grab a stamp (does not have to be a Stampotique Originals' stamp) and get started creating a one-layer project!  Each month, two lucky people will win a $30 gift certificate for Stampotique Originals products!  Submission details are here.

Thanks for stopping by today and for leaving a comment--both are important to me!


Monday, November 11, 2013


This Stampotique Designers' Challenge has been up since Wednesday, but my life has been rather full of late, so today is my day to play!  Sarinda Jones is the hostess this week, and here's her challenging challenge:
Hello Creatives. Sarinda here and I am asking you to rethink Gesso in this challenge. I find that I use Gesso a lot in my work and feel it is an amazing tool to utilize. Yes, tool. Not only does is serve as a basic prep to your substrate, it picks up texture of a stencil, use it with a pallet knife, layer it. And if you are using it with inks, sprays, or stains, it will create unique depth to your backgrounds. Even try it on top of lace, fabric, tulle. Play and be free. 
Sarinda has created a video with several ways of using gesso:

First, my project, then the detail: 

Mary, the Stampotique Originals' image I have used here was the first one I purchased, and remains one of my favorites.  For this project, I followed a tutorial I found on YouTube, that of Gisele Grenier, although I stopped short of covering all the gesso with paint, as Gisele did.  This technique shows engraving into gesso before it is dry, allowing that to dry, then scraping paint over the rough surface with a credit card (or similar tool).  I hope you will find time to watch both Sarinda's (above) and Gisele's (below) tutorials.  You will find a world of information in both!

I hope you will participate in this week's Stampotique Designers' Challenge and play with some gesso and a stamp (it does not have to be a Stampotique Originals' stamp).  Two lucky winners will be randomly drawn at the end of the month and will win a $30 gift certificate toward Stampotique products.

I am pleased that you stopped by today.  Both your visits and your comments are important to me.