Thursday, October 30, 2008

And the winner is.....

The winner of Top Designer is not me. :( The title goes to Jen Mattot. Congrats to her and the other runners up!

On a positive note - I have never been stretched so much creatively over the past 7 weeks and love my evolving style. Here are a couple of the LOs that I did today while waiting!



When I started Top Designer my goal was to just make it to the Top 10 and I did accomplish that & enjoyed myself greatly! Thanks for all of the encouragement I received along the way! :)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

October challenge at inspireME

I just barely squeaked this LO in by the deadline for the October challenge at inspireMe. Iris's challenge was handcutting and using a photo of an object.

I took a photo of the milk pitcher that my grandma gave me that belonged to her mother that they used everyday at their table! I love this treasure and it is sitting on some of the Dicken's collection that she gave me, too!

We are still waiting (anxiously) at Bad Girls for the announcement of Top Designer. It will be up by tomorrow!! I am so nervous!!! But I have been pretty creative - I finished my LOs for the November kit at Scrapmuse - I am going to be doing a technique article for using fabric in your LOs for the newsletter this month!

Hope you are having a great week! I will be back with the results - one way or another soon. Just wanted to say to huge thanks to all of my supporters!! You have all made me feel so encouraged!! THANKS!! :)

***just found out TD will be announced at 8PST Oct 30 - Tonight!! (My hands are shaking) lol

Monday, October 27, 2008

Final Exam - Top Designer

The final exam for Top Designer was Creative Altering- at first I thought this would be a breeze for me- seeing as I love mixed media, too! ;) Well, let me tell you, this project has blood, sweat and tears on it! (literally)

I started off looking at the thrift stores with Nan for some cool items to repurpose and found a silver casserole dish holder that I was going to mount the mixed media and heart into and it ended up being too small and the scale seemed off for me - so then this is Thursday by now- I headed up to Home Depot to look for some other type of frame and viole'!! (not exactly)

Here is the air conditioner duct frame I chose to work with - did you know that insulation can made you bleed? lol I painted it black and then used a rusting solution that I made a mad dash down to Michaels for - I thought it turned out pretty cool!

The flowers I made from circles of organza that I burned the edges with a candle flame to curl and sewed pearls in the centers. The muse is stamped onto an alcohol inked domino.


Here is a side shot so you can see the depth. The box is about 5 inches deep and lined with black velvet. The silver spots are brads - to look like stars.


I made my butterfly by stamping onto organza and layering 2 pieces together with fusible web - cutting it out and then glittering with stickles.



My mixed media background is on watercolor paper and has layers of stamped tissue paper, paint and vintage book pages collaged. The heart is quilted onto felt with velvet, burlap and sheer fabric and hand beaded to represent my heart - mended and in many pieces. The jar on the side is filled with words from my heart - my hope and dreams - good and the bad.



It was possibly the most intense piece I have ever made and I feel the most personal, too. No matter what happens in the competition I am so happy with what I have learned and how I have grown creatively over the last 7 weeks. The winner will be announced this week and I feel like I am in good company - the other ladies work is stunning and I can't imagine how they will choose just one.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Shadows of my Past

I wanted to share this mixed-media art quilt I recently made using a photo of my great-grandmother, Helen Netcott Main. She was probably around 19 in this photo - I thought the silhouette was stunning! I wish I could see what she is holding in her hands.
I printed the photo onto Extravorganza and layered it over paper and fabric and quilted everything together. There are layers of tulle, rub-ons and stitched down chipboard letters, too.


This week our challenge in Top Designer is to make an altered project, so, Nan & I hit the thrift stores yesterday and got some goodies!! I have been feverishly working today on my project! I am happy with the result so far. We'll see! lol

Monday, October 20, 2008

Top 10!!! (or 11)

I could scarcely believe my eyes when I saw MY name on the honor roll for Top Designer last night!!! I actually had tears in my eyes! Un-believable!!! The little girl in me can't imagine being classed with the talent going on in the competition. So....now there can be only one.

Here is the LO I created for Week 6 - Breaking the Rules. I absolutely love this - it turned out just as I imagined it.

This is a magical photo to me - The biggest rule I broke is a personal one - let go and don't overwork it! I will have to try to break it more often, I think. :)

I tore out the center of the scalloped MM paper and sewed it onto the LO and then added some crackle paint for texture.


So, the suspense will really be building this week. I am already so nervous!! lol I'll keep you posted!

btw - what do you think of my new blog banner?

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Creative Spurt

I guess working on my latest Top Designer project got me inspired and I have been going crazy with ideas for LOs - I have been wanting to play around more and try different photo sizes and placement - changing the balance and just seeing what works for me. In other words - having a blast!!! :)

I set up my tri-pod and let Emma direct the shooting and here are some of the results! lol Love hte bright colors of this Rose Mocca papers!!

These are the same boots from last year and Emma still loves them!


She now pretends to take my photo all of the time, too!

I so love this LO - It really captured the emotion I wanted from the photo - Emma loves to sing and I call her my little song bird.



Hope you are all having a great and fun weekend - we may have a little cool down!! I would love that! :)

Thursday, October 16, 2008

The LO I didn't choose...

I have been working on my LO (s) for Class 6 - Breaking the rules at Bad Girls for the past few days - Just wanted to share the LO I decided not to use for this week. ;)



So I just uploaded the 'chosen' one to Bad Girls - now I just have to wait until Sunday to find out if I am in the Top 10. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

October at Scrapmuse

Just wanted to share my last few LOs I made for Scrapmuse with the October kit! I shared the LOs I made using the Webster's Pages and had to use some of the fun Mellissa Frances stuff, too! If you like a vintage autumn look this is the kit for you! :) Here is a link to the newsletter , I wrote an article on using multiple photos on a LO.



Emma and I did a photo shoot today!! I set up the tri-pod and she directed me to turn my head this way or that! lol Actually, I like a few of the shots she took! Here is one that is sort of ok. ;)


I got some great shots of her in her Halloween costume - but I'll save those for another time. She picked out a Tinkerbell costume that she 'had' to have. She does look pretty cute! :) Maybe I am just biased, though. Naw.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

On to Class 6!!

I am so excited to announce that I made it through to Class 6 in Top Designer at Bad Girls!! I think my heart skipped a beat when I saw my name on the honor roll!! Wow, there are so many talented ladies in this competition!! It is down to 25 now and this week will reveal the Top 10 - I hope I make it!! :)

Here is my entry for Class 5 - Color Psychology


You had to pull the colors from your photo for your color scheme and then add either black or white as a neutral. It was so fun to work with the colors in this adorable photo of Em! I did a little pen work to accent the clouds and yellow scrolls. I felt like this was the perfect LO and colors for this photo and I guess the judges did, too!

I'll keep you posted as to the next class! Wish me luck!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

American Crafts

Just finished some new LOs with some AC papers from the Bad Girls September kit - This is so not paper I would normally buy - but I love it!!! :)

Emma is always wanting to play 'beauty shop' - here is a sample of our pedicures.


I wanted to try another 'less is more' type LO - I could kind of get into this! I was just over at BGs and saw I got LOTW with Awesome Smile! Yeah!! :)


Seems like I have had a lot to show this week - and I have more to come!! Tonight I taught a class at Scrappy Papers - It is so much fun to share my love of this awesomness we call scrapbooking! Enjoy and happy creating!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Mind Wide Open - Ooh-la-la

I participated in the Mind Wide Open challenge this month. Nan and I were crafting late one night this week and it suddenly hit us to just do it and have some fun - so I completed this project in less than an hour and while it is kind of simple for me - I really like it! :)

I started this mixed media quilt by printing the image onto fabric and layering it onto organza that I stamped a damask pattern on and a french dictionary page. The entire piece is quilted together with a base of decorative fabric, batting and paper. Then the flowers and trim were added. The title is a rub-on, hence the name - Ooh-la-la!


Mind Wide Open is a fun monthly challenge site that gives everyone the same image to work with and then people vote for their favorites. (hint, hint) The winner receives a coupon from the Shabby Cottage Studio.

I just finished my LO for Top Designer and uploaded it to Bad Girls and am working on some other new stuff to share later this week! Have a great day! :)

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

On to Class 5

I was thrilled to see I made it through to Class 5 at Top Designer! It is down to 50 now and Wendy announced that Class 6 would be a surprise - the top 10 would be secretly notified and have a special challenge - and (holding my breath) the winner would guest DT for Bad Girls in Dec - with the possibility of a full DT possition. Can you even imagine?!? Anyway, I am sure that the lucky girl will be on cloud 9. I would be beside myself to just make it to the top 10 - there is some amazing talent going on in that contest! Here is the LO I made for Class 4 - Accessorizing:

I used a combination Prima, Fancy Pants & Creative Imaginations papers and I had these blue and purple bling that I have been 'saving' - I felt it worked perfectly!


A close-up of my distressing and stitching.


Well, Em is calling me to help her do her 'school' - she has been trying to learn to write some of her letters. I better hurry while she still wants to work! lol Have a great day! :)

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Paper Quilting Technique

Fall always makes me think of quilts and autumn leaves so I wanted to combine both in this LO.

Step 1 - Cut 3" squares from 9 different papers - I chose fall colors to go with my photo.

Step 2 - Lay out the squares to see how the colors go togther and see if you like the color and pattern combination.

Step 3 - Wet and crumple your papers to give the appearance of fabric. Gently smooth out and let dry.

Step 4 - Tear a piece of muslin or whatever fabric you want to use for the background - mine is 10" square. You can cut or use pinking shears if you want. I let my edges ravel to add to the homespun look. Layer your paper squares onto the muslin with the edges touching and add a small amout of glue in the center of each paper square to hold in place while you stitch.

Step 5 - Stitch over the seams of the paper using a zig-zag stitch - I did the interior rows first and then the outside.


This is how the back will look.

After you have finished stitching, trim any loose threads and crumple to soften. This makes a great textured layer for a LO. I just left mine a little rumpled and glued it onto my LO with fabric glue.

Hope you will give this fun and easy technique a try! :)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Websters Pages & Scrapmuse

This month's kit from Scrapmuse reminds me of a vintage fall day. We have some gorgeous papers from Websters in the kit and I made a couple of LOs using their papers to put up on inspireMe. Terri Hayes was sweet enough to feature both of them with our kit preview on their page!! I was so excited to see my work up on their site! It is on the main page if you scroll down to the bottom under kit of the month! Hope you get a chance to see it and visit the fun site they have over there for the other Webster lovers like me. :)


I don't think you even need to see the title on this page -lol- the photo says it all.

Emma thought these little wildflowers were fairies -so I wanted the title to be walking in the fairies but ran out of space. But I think you get the idea!

Well, Mark started his job yesterday and I am now in the organizing and clean-up mode!! I am so behind on that. (I am usually behind on that) So, I am off to get busy today! It feels like a little bit of fall in the air here this morning and it's made me inspired - to work or create? I guess I will have to see. Hope you all are having a wonderful week!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Handmade Paper Flowers

I made these handmade paper flowers to coordinate perfectly with this LO and thought I would share the tutorial that I made. I just love Cosmo Cricket and thought that these papers from the Sugar Pie line gave this LO a sweet homespun touch. Of course I added stitching and some distressing, too!

Here was my inspiration for the flowers - aren't these new flowers from Prima adorable! So, of course I was thinking, well, I want them to match my LO - and I want to make them the size I want and vary the colors - and this is what I came up with.
Step 1 - Choose your papers to make your flower layers from - I chose to make mine 4 layers.It is very important that your paper have a white core to get the effect that mine have - If not you could go over the edges with gesso or white ink but I don't think it will look the same. It looks good to have shades from light to dark or just to coordinate with your LO. You could also mix and match patterned paper.

Step 2 - Cut circles from your chosen papers graduating in size - my largest circle was roughly 3" and the others about 1/2" smaller. Cut them with a slight wave to the edges or you could make them oblong, too.


Step 3 - Distress the edges of each petal with scissors or distressing tool. With the scissor use the side of the blade and be careful not to cut yourself! lol You can also dampen them with water to help hold their shape.
Step 4 - Shape each petal individually by crumpling and cupping it to make a more organic shape.
Step 5 - Layer your petals on top of each other - I offset mine but the ones from Prima are centered on each other.

Step 6 - Sew a button in the center of your petals to hold them together. I used a awl to poke through all four layers at once and then used the holes to stitch through. You could also just use a hole punch and a decorative brad.

Step 7 - I shaped my flowers a little more after they were all attached together. And then you are ready to apply it to your project!

I hope you enjoyed seeing how I made these quick and easy paper flowers and will try them for yourself! Thanks for taking the time to look at my project. How do you think I did with the instructions and photos? I hope it is easy to understand. :) If you make some please send me the link so I can see! :)