Sunday, March 30, 2014


I know, I's not Wednesday!  But, I did want to share a card that I made for my nephew Carlos' 50th birthday which we are celebrating at a family gathering today.

I am a huge Wendy Vecchi fan and love all her products.  A new technique she shared at CHA 2014 uses her stamp pad reinkers, Tim Holtz' metalic mixative and plain old rubbing alcohol.  You can see how this is done right here

I appreciate your visit today, as well as your kind comments! Have a great Sunday.


Wednesday, March 26, 2014


Another Wednesday, and another shout out from the Stampotique Designers' Challenge Team!  This challenge is brought to you by France Papillon, who is not only a Stampotique Design Team member, but one of their seasoned stamp designers!

Here's what France has to say:
Hello, lovely Stampotiquers, 
Lots of us get so excited when we get our hands on an old ledger, old books, or old family photos even from people we don’t know.  But those are often hard to come by, or very expensive.  Because of that, lots of us became very agile in making new things look old. Using inks, paper distressing tools and yummy techniques.  How about we combine all that love for all things vintage and all those yummy techniques with our favorite stamps, to create a vintage looking Stampotique piece?  Can’t wait to see where that leads you!  Ready?  Create!
While "vintage" is one of my top two favorite themes, I still find it difficult to create something in that vein. To get me inspired, I used a piece of designer scrapbook paper from the Prima Cartographer Collection called "Mots D' Amour."  Vintage also makes me think of the Stampotique image by Jill Penney and Daniel Torrente called "Relaxin'," as I always think of her as a bit of a rebel fasionista!  A quick search for a quote dealing with vintage fashion, and I came full circle to current fashionista Carly Rae Jepson!  Carly is a Canadian recording artist and singer-songwriter from British Columbia, who placed third in 2007 during the Canadian Idol competition (huge American Idol fan here!).  

I hope you will participate in this week's Stampotique Designers' Challenge.  You can read the rules and submit your work here.  At the end of the month, you will be entered into a random drawing for a chance to win one of two $30 gift certificates from Stampotique Originals for any of their products.


Wednesday, March 19, 2014


Another Wednesday and another chance to "answer" the Stampotique Designers' Challenge.  R. Marina Sabina is our beautiful hostess this week, and here's her challenge to all of us:

''How many masculine cards did you make in the last month? I personaly made zero cards. Masculine creations can be a real challenge. I challenge you to create something using the masculine theme. Keep the cuteness and blings away this time. Lock them in your drawer. Let's make men feel special at least once in a while with,  something made only for them''.

I needed a birthday gift tag, so I used a smaller tag on which I had already created some texture by hand embossing wet gesso. Once dried, I had added some festive acrylic paints, primarily blue and orange.   I picked one of my "guy" images (surprisingly, I am accumulating quite a collection of them) called Heart Shirt and stamped him on white card stock.  At the same time and on the same paper, I stamped the Banner and Happy Birthday sentiment (this last one, three times).  Heart Shirt was colored using Distress Markers, as was the banner.  I added bits of two orange washi tapes across the bottom to anchor my image, then adhered all the elements.  Since the background was already done, it took me fewer than 20 minutes to complete this tag:

I hope you will participate in this week's Stampotique Designers' Challenge.  You can read the rules and submit your work here.  At the end of the month, you will be entered into a random drawing for a chance to win one of two $30 gift certificates from Stampotique Originals for any of their products.


Wednesday, March 12, 2014


Thanks for all the great comments this past week on both the challenge itself (hosted by me) and, of course, my delightfully controversial nude!  If you missed that post, check it out here

Today's Stampotique Designers' Challenge is brought to us by the very creative Kristen Catalano.  Here's her challenge:
Hello there, Kristen here, and I am the host of this week’s Challenge. I am a huge fan of using Primary colors in my projects, with Red being my favorite, but since it is March, and this month is the month of the beginning of Spring and St. Paddy’s Day. I am challenging you to use GREEN as the main color in your project. I can’t wait to see what you create. Have fun and have a great week!
I must admit, my first thoughts turned to St. Patrick's Day, but then to a mushroom stamp that I recently bought and had not yet used.  From there, I immediately thought of another new stamp, this one a text stamp about a "magical place."  A smile crossed my face as I recollected the use of psychedelic mushrooms in years past to take one to a magical place!   I won't offer up a more detailed description of "trips" taken by some (not me!), but you can check any search engine for said mushrooms if you want more information.  

My project today is a card using green as my primary color.  

I used a white card base, added a piece of olive green card stock, then trimmed and added a quick and easy background by using a piece of designer scrapbook paper with some of the same green tones.  I stamped my mushroom using black Archival Ink and heat set it.  (I do this heat setting after using Archival Inks so that they are permanent and won't rub off onto my hands and transfer to unwanted areas of my project.)  I used a blending tool to add a bit of Wendy Vecchi's "Fern Green" Archival Ink (by Ranger) to the edges.

Next step is to stamp my dancer image directly onto my background paper.  Then, I stamped it again onto white card stock, where I colored it with a watercolor brush and a bit of ink pressed into the lid of my stamp pad.  Copic markers were used for the fleshtones.  I then cut out the image--minus the musical notes which will reappear when I  adhere it over the image on my card.  

I stamped the text stamp onto a scrap of background paper, then matted it with a scrap of the olive green card stock.  I popped it up on pop dots for a bit of dimension, and done! Here are the stamps I used:

This card is going to my daughter Michelle who a few months ago was brave enough to change jobs after more than 16 years with the same company.  She has joined a start-up company full of energy, enthusism and electricity--a magical place, if you will!  

I hope you will participate in this week's Stampotique Designers' Challenge.  You can read the rules and submit your work here.  At the end of the month, you will be entered into a random drawing for a chance to win one of two $30 gift certificates from Stampotique Originals for any of their products.


Wednesday, March 5, 2014


I am proud to see the number of followers of this blog continuing to grow, and I appreciate each and every one of you and all of your supportive comments!

Today, I am pleased to host the Stampotique Designers' Challenge, and it is all about backgrounds!  Here are the details of this challenge. 
I am thrilled to be posting the challenge today!  That said, it is going to be a challenge with a bit of a twist.  This challenge is all about using texture in the background of your artful projects.  But, here’s the twist:  I am not challenging you to create a texture like mine, but challenging you to share with the rest of us through your art your “signature” or “go to” techniques for creating that texture in your backgrounds.  For example, Design Team member Coby vanWilligenburg has the ability to create amazing texture in a background by using Yupo (synthetic) paper and alcohol inks, yet her background remains as flat as a pancake!!  On the other hand, Design Team member Magda Polakow will create a textured background by building up many layers, yet it remains in the background and never overpowers her focal images.  So, share with us what YOU do to create that physical texture or just the appearance of it!  Above all, have fun!
A month or so ago, I bought some new Stampotique Originals' stamps.  Among them is the one I am using today.  OK, like so many others, I debated about buying it.  Not that it is of a nude and I am a prude, but because the nude is, shall we say, a bit "chubby"  (not unlike myself or so many of us who struggle maintaining a healthy weight).  In fact, when I posted online that I bought her, I received a few snickers and was challenged by one of my fellow Design Team members (who shall remain nameless, Coby!) to actually use it.  So, here I present "Rear View Mirror" and her companion text stamp "I'm not fat...".

Ah, but this challenge is all about backgrounds, so let me tell you how I created this one.  This past year, I attended a class led by Ranger Signature Designer Wendy Vecchi.  We learned so many techniques in this class, but one of my favorites is the "burnt edge" technique.  Here are Wendy's directions:  Ink over entire tag with Antique Linen.  Frame tag with Vintage Photo, then Walnut Stain, then Black Soot (all Ranger Distress Inks), moving further out with each darker color.  Use Tim's "distresser" on the tag edges, then add Black Soot to the edges to create a burned effect (click on the image to enlarge it and see the edge detail).  I used black Archival Ink to stamp my Stampotique image and text, and added a rub-on along the right side for both interest and balance.

Here's another quick and simple background.  I have been scrapbooking for about 15 years and have accumulated quite a collection of designer papers.  I continue to use them in other artful projects like tags, ATCs, art journaling and cards.  In this example, I have used a small strip of washi tape to ground my image, as well as two Stampotique Originals' stamps, "Bowtie" and "Clothes Text."  Everything else you see is just the paper itself.  


I hope you will play along with the Stampotique Design Team this week and share your favorite background techniques.  We have a lot to learn from each other!  You do not have to use Stampotique stamps in order to participate, but you do have to use clear and/or rubber stamps (no digi's).  By participating, at the end of the month you may just be the lucky winner of one of two $30 gift certificates for Stampotique products.  Come play!