"...at its core....art is simply the language of the soul" -Robert Redford

Thanks for stopping by. Please enjoy your stay here. Have some Sweet Tea, grab a chair and sit a spell. Rekindle your SOUL, Embrace the ART and Believe your DREAMS. Stay as long as you like and come back soon. Friends are always welcome here.

Wednesday, January 26

OWH Operation Write Home - Crafting for a cause

I just finished my first 14 cards for a wonderful organization I just discovered called Operation Write Home. From their site:

Our Mission:

 Supporting our nation's armed forces by sending blank handmade greeting cards to write home on, as well as cards of gratitude to encourage them. This merry band of thousands of cardmakers is made up of Americans - and citizens of other nations too - who care about our military, and want to support them through creativity and encouragement. Crafters of all ages and levels of experience have participated since 2007...and are on the way to a landmark one MILLION cards!Care packages filled with hundreds of handmade cards are sent to our contacts, restocking every 6-8 weeks, and are sent in time for the long journey back home to loved ones. Each box is packed with great care, alternating styles, colors, and cardmakers from all over the USA, creating "eye candy" for heroes who see only khaki around them. The topper on each box is a plastic bag filled with 20-30 letters from adults and children across the country, letters handed out especially to those in need of a positive word from the homefront.Boxes are shipped through every week of the year, so join us anytime in sending your beautiful creations to help our heroes keep in touch with home!

I plan to make as many cards as I can fit in a flat rate box and then send them off. If you are interested and need any info, plmk. These are just one set of many different kinds I shall be making using all manner of techniques.

On to the cards.....I used 2 different Stampin' Up stamp sets on these cards so they are similar yet each one is still unique. I used Unfrogettable and Crab & Co. Just like the Journals of Love I am so enjoying my "Crafting for a Cause". I love the gift of ART that I have been given. Since we all happen to have just a 'few' :::gasp, cough::: ART supplies hanging around in our studios I think this is an amazing way to use them up. Oh, it appears that I desperately need to clean the scanner! Trust me, the cards are crisp  and clean! Ugh! Off to find the cleaner......

Friday, January 21

2 more journals and some Valentine ART....

...as you know by now I really enjoy making these journals. These 2 are similar in design (which I rarely do), but I just could "see" both of them. One is for Journals of Love and the other is for a glitter and bling ART lottery in one of my Yahoo groups. I really like the colors in these papers (And they aren't even PINK!!)

My fave Holiday is Valentine's Day so you will be seeing quite a bit of Heartsy ART for a bit! This is my first ever easel card. I really like this concept. It was fina nd much easier than I thought it would be. I have a feeling there will be quite a few recipients of Valentine's Day easel cards in 2011! :) I used my fave envie template that fits a square card that whn sealed on the bottom half open up into a heart. Perfect for my fave holiday!

Finally, I signed up for a make two 4x4's in a Valentine's theme.I really like the addiiton of the vintage BINGO card in the background. And, well, everyone needs a crown, don't you think?

Tuesday, January 18

Journals of Love....

I have been wanting to make some "Ars Gratia Artis" or "ART for ART's sake". One of my fave things to make are Journals of Love. These handmade journals are delivered to cancer centers for the use of the patients. A friend of mine was asked to make one for a family member and she took it with her during her treatments, others saw it and wanted one and thus JoL was born. You can see more of my journals here, here, here and here. I make mine from the composition books sold in the school supply aisle. I cover and embellish all 4 covers, sometimes adding a ribbon closure. Each journal is fun to make and completely unique. I use a variety of papers: calendar pages, scrapbook paper, wallpaper, vintage books and dictionaries.....whatever crosses my path on the day. Enjoy!

Here are the journals made with paper from DCWV (Die Cuts WIth a View).
DCWV Rockstar front

DCWV Rockstar back
DCWV Green Stack back

DCWV Mariposa front

DCWV Mariposa back

DCWV Once upon a time front

DCWV Once upon a time front
These journals were all made from wallpaper sample books. My fave place to obtain them is Sherwin Williams. They turn themover on a monthly basis! :) Great recycling and giving back project!

Bloom where you are planted front

Bloom where you are planted back

LightHouse front

LightHouse back

Rooster front

Rooster Back


Noah's Ark


Finally I was looking for an economical and unique way to cover the inside covers and came up with using some of my vintage dictionary pages. THey are great whenI do not have co-ordinating papers to use! :)

Vintage dictionary end papers

Vintage dictionary end papers close-up

Friday, January 14

Our house update (the work in progress)....

Thought I would share a bit of the work in progress aka our house in Florida. We are slowly but surely getting there. We moved in so close to Christmas that we didn't bother with regular decorating. Now that Christmas has been packed away....the place looks REALLY empty! LOL I'm still struggling with how to decorate 12' ceilings but wouldn't change them for the world. So in no particular order....here we go.

Up first is some new additions to the family room. DH has been wanting to make an Entertainment Center for quite some time now. Finally, we found some inspiration in a Pottery Barn catalog and began drafting out a plan. Here is the finished project (well sans the glass doors that will eventually grace the center section). She is lovingly stained in our fave color: Gunstock. The doodads and nick nacks are in the beginning stages and it will be a work in progress as I find more things to add, but I HAD to start somewhere. We have tons of family pics that are framed that will be coming into the space too at some point....just not sure where.

Entertainment Center

Entertainment Center
Entertainment Center

Entertainment Center - Gunstock close-up

This is a shot of one of the 2 lamps we repurposed. The first is the wooden camera tripod carried all over the world by his Great Uncle (He was a photographer for National Geographic). We weren't sure what to do with it, but knew it had to stay in the family. Thus was born the first of our lamps. Isn't it the coolest?  Since we had one I knew we needed a second eclectic lamp. So, at a tag sale I fell in love with this fire extinguisher and thus was born the 2nd lamp. The shade is new.....I'm thinking it needs a good dunking in some black RIT dye but am living with it for awhile before I (Or it) takes the plunge.

Tripod Lamp
Fire Extinguisher Lamp


Here is the first step on the fireplace mantle.....not sure it is finished yet, but I do like the black iron addition. This fireplace is so weird with the space between the mantle and the hearth. I think it was a nice tie in! Yes, you know I sprayed it flat black!

Mantle close-up


This is my new cool giant clock from Kohl's. I have wanted one for awhile now, but the only sale they ever have is BOGO (Buy one get one free). Now seriously, who really goes to the store to buy TWO giant clocks.....come on! So, finally at Christmas time they were 50% off! YES! Now that makes a wee bit more sense doesn't it? Geesh!

Big Clock

Big Clock

On to my bedroom. You may remember my $1 dresser project. Well, she is now sporting some fun doodads including my Eiffel Tower, my found head and some Valentine ART goodies from various friends. Next to the dresser is Ruth Iola and my newly acquired black Christmas tree. I LOVE it and it will remain out year round. It is decorated with the themes for this room. I call it 3 P's and a D. That stands for Pink, Pirates, Peacocks and Disney. I have some serious wall ART in the works for this room too, but that is for another day. Ruth Iola is sporting a new HOPE hanging ornie too that I think is really awesome.





Ruth Iola

Ruth Iola

Black Tree

Black Tree

Tree close-up

Tree close-up

On the other side of the room is my newly repuposed hutch. It was in our dining room in our last house. Since I'm using black in here it was a perfect fit although quite boring. So I had DH cut me some panels and I headed to the studio. Armed with my decoupage glue mix and some vintage papers (Russian dictionary, church hymnal, American dictionary stamped with my fave ART images)and some vintage ladies cut from a vintage sewing book) I began the transformation. After the collages were dry I coated them with 2 coats of Polycrylic. Best stuff ever people....try it if you have not! They were cut to fit precisely so they just sit at the back and are therefore removable if need be. I LOVE this personalized piece of MEness!  I have now added in more personalized goodies: my Great Grandma's candy dish, more Valentine ART from friends, my fave Disney pics and more. I really am happy with how it is turning out. Hope you enjoyed your mini tour of the work going on in Florida this week! Enjoy!