Wednesday, July 30, 2014


I am thrilled to have a turn to host the Stampotique Designers' Challenge this week!  What might seem like a simple challenge to most, for some, whose work is generally full of color, it really will be a challenge.  But, for all of us, it's good to try something different. I have been on a black'n'white artistic kick lately because I love the crisp freshness it can bring to a card, journal page or ATC. Whatever you decide to do, keep it black and white with just a pop of color!  Get creative this week and join us!  The directions and rules for submission can be found here

To inspire you, I have made a card. The "technical details" are below, if you are interested.

I used a black card blank and scraps of patterned paper and black card stock to create the card.  I trimmed the patterned paper just a bit smaller than the card blank so the card blank serves as matting.  I used one of the new Tim Holtz Frameworks dies (Honeycomb) to create a bit of interest on the left.  I used an oval punch to create the "rug" to ground my image.  That delightful image is from Stampotique Originals, and is by one of their newest stamp designers, Linda Peterson.  This image is called "Hazelheart," and you can find all of Linda's stamps (most with coordinating text stamps) here.  For my sentiment, I used a Stampotique text stamp called "You are in my prayers."

Thanks so much for stopping by today, as well as for your comments.  Both mean a lot to me!  Between my blog followers and networked blog followers, I am nearing that 200 mark!  If you have not yet joined as a follower, please do so.  I would love to see you back again!  


Thursday, July 24, 2014


If you are looking for my post for this week's Stampotique Designers' Challenge, it is immediately below.

I am thrilled to have been asked to host today's challenge on the Tag Along Blog!  I created this tag for my step-daughter's high school graduation last month. A personal note was included on the back. I love steampunk, but with a "softer" edge, so I took great latitude here with the steampunk theme.  

If you are interested in the process, the details are below.

For the tag base, I chose Strathmore Mixed Media 140 lb. paper. Using the "gears" stencil from The Crafters Workshop (TCW262), I applied a very thick layer of Liquitex Modeling Paste.  I let the paste dry naturally for several days.  Next, I randomly pounced (yes, I did say pounced!) color onto the surface by using Ranger's Distress Paints in Spiced Marmalade, Rusty Hinge, and Wild Honey.  Without allowing the paint to dry, I tilted my tag up on its base and began spraying water along the top.  I added more paint, then sprayed again, repeating until I was happy with the coverage and "drippage." To add a bit more color and interest, I rubbed on some Inka-Gold in orange, then diluted a few drops of Golden's fluid acrylic in Teal and sparingly added that.

Both my stamp and sentiment are from Stampotique Originals, the image being "Single Tear," and the sentiment, "Aborigine." The finishing touches include a Tim Holtz' Idea-ology Fastener, jump ring, and Crinkle Ribbon (colored on my craft mat with Dylusions spray inks), as well as some random trinkets found in my stash.

I am happy that you visited today, and would love it if you left a comment so that I will know you were here.  If you have not already done so, please sign up as a follower (above and to the right).  Then, sign up to "follow by e-mail" so that you don't miss an update!

Please take some time this week to get crafty and create a tag for my steampunk challenge on the Tag Along Blog!  You can add your artwork here.


Wednesday, July 23, 2014


The weather in New England during the month of July has reached 90 degrees on numerous days, so it has been hard for me to think of "Christmas in July," which is what my ├╝ber-talented teammate Gez Butterworth is asking us to do for this week's Stampotique Designers' Challenge!  

Hi Gez here, I am delighted to be your hostess for this week’s challenge. 
It's never too early to start thinking about Christmas right?!! ;-) I thought it would be nice for us to spread a wave of festive cheer throughout Blogland! 
Every year I set out with good intentions and imagine a great big stack of handmade Christmas cards all ready to send out nice and early in December, in reality I think it's happened once! So, let’s do it together! Dig deep and crack open the Christmas stash box early!! 
This is a fun challenge, I hope you enjoy it too!

I have a niece (who shall remain nameless, Mandi) who is so into Christmas that she actually does celebrate Christmas in July.  She is an obstetrics nurse at a local hospital, and has been known to involve her co-workers in this (now yearly) tradition!

My answer to this challenge is a simple one, but tells the story perfectly from my stance.  Enjoy it!

That snowman is one of the Stampotique Originals' "funnest" stamps, and is called "Global Warming?" He was my inspiration for this July calendar page which I printed from the internet.

I hope you will play along this week and create something for this challenge!  You can find the directions and rules for submitting your artwork here.  At the end of the month, two winners are randomly selected to receive a $30 gift certificate for anything in the Stampotique "store."  Who can say no to that?


Wednesday, July 16, 2014


Yep!  It's Wednesday, and that means the Stampotique Designers' Challenge has been posted.  France Papillon is our lovely hostess this week, and she has challenged us all to create artwork which is inspired by our favorite book.  But, I will let France challenge you:
Hi! My name is France and I'm a bookworm.  No doubt there are a lot of other bookworms among our lovely Stampotiquers.  I would like to know about your favorite books.  So my challenge for you, should you accept it, is to create a piece, inspired by your favorite book.  Let the story, the title, the cover, a quote inspire you!  Now you might have a problem choosing your all time favorite book, don't worry, it's not like you are writing it in stone, just pick one.  Or maybe your problem is that you don't like reading at all.  Here is how to cheat: go for your favorite film based on a book, we won't tell ;)))
Long before I ever read "The Notebook," I fell in love with a quote from the book.  I was so impacted by this quote because I felt it perfectly described how my husband felt about his love for me.  Although I believe both my former husbands loved me (each in his own way), no man, since my father, has loved me immeasurably, as Russ does.  The quote reads...
I am nothing special; of this I am sure.  I am a common man with common thoughts, and I've led a common life.  There are no monuments dedicated to me and my name will soon be forgotten, but I've loved another with all my heart and soul, and to me, this has always been enough.
While I do believe that Russ is, indeed, something very special, I used this quote when creating the scrapbook of our wedding photos.  This month, we will celebrate our 9th wedding anniversary, although we have been together much longer than that.  Here is the card I have created to give him tomorrow!

Thank you so much for visiting today.  Please do leave a comment so that I will know you were here.  I hope you will take some time this week to create something inspired by your favorite book.  The directions and rules for submitting your work can be found here.  


Wednesday, July 9, 2014


If you are looking for my post for this week's Stampotique Designers' Challenge, it is immediately below.

I was intrigued by the Tag Along Blog Challenge theme this week, so decided I wanted to participate.  The theme is "Nature's Glory," so I set out looking at all my floral stamps.  Stampotique Originals has a lot of them, but I chose something that is, by some, considered a weed because it most often grows naturally.  It's called "Spidergrass."  I also have a text stamp that I love, but hadn't had a chance to use.  It's called "Wildflower Verse," so is just perfect!  

I began by applying a few drops of two of Ranger's Archival ink reinkers on my craft mat, and added a bit of copper mixative.  I smeared these around with a palette knife, then pressed my tag into the ink and smeared it around.  I did this a few times until I had good coverage.  Once dried, I added a bit of washi tape at the bottom to ground my flowers, then stamped my text below it.   I stamped my floral image once on the left side.  I then created a mask of the stamp, and stamped my image a second time over the mask on the right side, just a bit lower than the first impression.  A ribbon, and done!  Take a look:

If you like tags, I hope you will participate and create something fun today!



This week, the Stampotique Designers' Challenge is hosted by Magda Polakow, one of the newest stamp designers for Stampotique Originals.  Magda is asking us to incorporate something from a newspaper or magazine into our art:
Hello everyone! It's Magda. I'm back to work after my holidays but still have time for some relaxing. I'm sitting surrounded by books and magazines. Today I would like to ask you to use a newspaper or magazine in your project. It can be a small piece, some images from magazine to make a collage or you can use whole page as a background. Have fun! Can't wait to see your creations!
Each time I visit my sister on Cape Cod, we visit her local transfer station, aka "the dump," to check out what's in the Swap Shop, a free-standing building where one can deposit reusable goods no longer wanted, or snatch up someone else's discard.  I have accumulated quite a collection of magazines this way, so I chose a National Geographic from December 2012, and started thumbing through it.  This picture immediately caught my eye because of the bright colors.  What you see are multi-colored cloth strips used by Mongolian shamans--those called by spirits to heal bodies, minds and souls.

I trimmed the magazine photo to the size of an ATC (2-1/2" x 3-1/2") and adhered it to an ATC blank for strengthing.  I chose "Head" from my growing number of Stampotique stamps, and stamped him on white card stock.  For sharp contrast against all this color, both Head and my sentiment remained in black and white.  Take a look:

I hope you will join me in creating something for this week's challenge.  The rules for submitting your work can be found here.  At the end of each month, two lucky artists will be randomly chosen to receive a $30 gift certificate for anything in the Stampotique "store."


Wednesday, July 2, 2014


Thanks for stopping by today!  What does the camel say?  Yep, it's Hump Day!  What he doesn't say is that it is also the day when the new Stampotique Designers' Challenge is posted.  He leaves that to me!  My teammate Kathi Rerek is at the helm today, and here's her challenge:
It's the summer here, which means it's the perfect time for a break from your everyday activities, like school or work! My challenge this week is Vacation and/or Travel! 
There's a lot of latitude (pun intended) with this challenge! I can't wait to see what you all create!
Since I am retired, it already seems as though I am on a permanent vacation, but travel?  That's another story!  I love it and don't seem to ever get enough of it!!  

Now, to the task at hand!  Linda Peterson is one of the newest stamp designers to arrive on the scene at Stampotique Originals.  She has introduced us to "Hazel," who is now the rage with the Design Team members.  There are several Hazel characters (many with coordinating text stamps), and you can find them all here.  But, let me personally introduce you to "Find Your Happy," my travel mate today:

Although Hazel is perfect for paper piecing and coloring, today my artwork is about her message and not so much the art!  This piece was actually created on printer paper as a "test drive" for what I wanted to do, but it ended up being just what I wanted. Hazel slides nicely into a 5x7 clear acrylic "box frame" for either hanging or display (it has an "easel" back).  

Thanks so much for your visit today, as well as your kind words. Both are important to me!  I hope you will take some time this week to get creative and make something for this challenge. The rules for submitting your work can be found here.  At the end of the month, there are two $30 gift certificates randomly awarded among all submissions.  Maybe one of them will have your name on it!