Tuesday, March 30, 2010

finished journal!

a variety of recycled vintage and scrapbook paper

coptic stitched spine

the journal opens flat!

pages ready to be altered!

i LOVE making these coptic stitch journals! i finished the first one and then made my first custom journal for my stepdaugther, brielle. what's great about these journals is they are easy to make (i can make one in a day) and they use up all the materials i have around the studio. AWESOME! i love projects that use up stuff i already have.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

what i've been up to...

i was looking for journals on etsy one evening and after thinking, "hey, i can do that!" decided i'd try to make my own! i've done it once before using teesha moore's instructions (found HERE). but i decided this time to try the coptic stitch method. i found a great tutorial on youtube (HERE) and after the baby goes to bed tonite, i'm going to try to stitch the pages to the book covers.

these are some of the book signatures, or groupings of pages. i folded three papers together per signature. i used a variety of scrapbook paper, vintage ledger pages and music sheets.

these are the inside covers (front and back). i used some great wrapping paper i got from a workshop i took with Anahata Katkin last September. You can find some similar kinds of paper in her PaPaYa shop! (i think the paper on the right was designed by Pam Garrison).

here are the journal covers (front and back). i used vintage flocked wallpaper for the front (also found on etsy!) and for the back cover i used wrapping paper i bought at Cost Plus. (love love love!)

and i finished Sureya's baby quilt! i started this project waaaay back when and i finally finished it. ok, well, it's 99.99% finished. i just have to hand-stitch a little section closed and then it's DONE! :)

i used a pack of precut squares that i bought on etsy from materialgirlchic. it is a 5" fabric pack, precut and ready to go! it totally helps me to have all the squares pre-cut. i've bought a couple of other packs from her and it just makes sewing a breeze for me! the pattern is "ginger blossom" by sandy henderson for michael miller.

and that's all for now. here's a cute little easter cup i made for a swap recently. you can see all the participants' creations here!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Spring is in full bloom...

...and it's about time! we've had the most lovely, springy, warm, blossom-and-birds-filled couple of days this week and it's such a welcome relief from the gloomy, rainy days of this very LOOOONG winter. not that i have anything against winter...i love ALL the seasons...but i am a nature-sunshine-outdoorsy-barefoot type person and i can get kind of depressed and unmotivated pretty quick if i'm cooped up for too long.

so me and maya and sureya have been enjoying the sunshine. taking trips to the park, eating drippy popsicles, and hanging out on the front lawn (much like last spring/summer when sureya was first born!) i think it's time to break out the art journal bag-o-fun! i did quite a bit of art journaling this summer out on the lawn while sureya was just a pup. (i blogged about it here.)

sureya sees a sweet treat!

and i've been getting out more in the morning. even though i've had almost ZERO sleep these days, it helps to start the day out and about (keeps my mind off of how tired i am!) then i try to nap in the afternoon with the baby before picking up maya. it helps to get me and sureya out of the house. she's less whiny/needy (i know, she's just a baby, but i swear she's so much happier when we're out and about. much like her mama--she needs to explore and be outdoors and see people and places and have endless adventures!) and i'm less grumpy/sad (bad mama mix!).

gimme the popsicle and no one gets hurt!

big sister shares a little bit of mom's sweet treat!

i've been adding bits and pieces to my "remains of the day" art journal. it's for the online class i'm taking with mary ann moss.

i'm LOVING this class, by the way. and it's PERFECT for moms who have very limited time to work on art or have only those weird times like when the baby is napping or when the whole house is fast asleep at 1 in the morning!

the videos are up for a LONG time and i can watch them as many times as i like. there's a flickr group and when you sign up for the class, you get access to a separate website with the videos and PDF downloads (printable instructions with photos plus fun things to print and add to your pages)

what else...i'm totally into estate sales right now! i've been shopping on etsy for a long time and it can get a little pricey (all those "little" purchases add up!) i keep seeing everyone in blogland find all these cute and curious goods at estate sales for a fraction of the cost so i thought i'd give it a try.

i just went on craigslist and typed in "estate sale" for my area (sf bay area--south bay). i love these little collection of old birthday candles. one of them is marked .27 cents!

it's kind of weird, though, the thought that you are rummaging through someone else's belongings...someone who most likely has recently departed this world. i try to be mindful and respectful as i wander through someone's home.

i try to imagine who they were and what they did from what clues are left behind. and i think that i wouldn't mind people take my belongings once i was gone. as the saying goes, you can't take it with you! i mostly look for vintage supplies that i can use in my artwork and crafty/home decor projects.

i picked up a whole bunch of vintage ric rac today along with vintage sewing patterns, spools of thread, a box of little teeny tiny glass xmas ornaments plus, a very special find: two hand embroidery pieces. these pieces were stuffed into an envelope and found among the sewing patterns. they are made with such love and care and i am so curious about their story. i wonder why they weren't framed and hanging on the wall like they so deserve. i will cherish these and take care of them. i'd like to scan them to use parts in my artwork but the originals will be framed and admired.

OH! i'm off to JOURNALFEST in october!! (i know, it's still months away, but i am so EXCITED!) my mom is flying out to help take care of the baby while i'm gone. she'll be 17 months by then...i wonder how she'll do without me for 4 days! (i wonder how i'll do? i couldn't leave maya for more than a few hours when she was that age. i think it's different with the second child. i'm sure i'll miss her but i think i'll still be able to enjoy myself and my little break!)

i'm registering for classes with roxanne padgett and ingrid dijkers. there were so so many lovely classes to choose from, it was a tough decision! there is still time to register. check it out! journalfest is much like artfest except it's smaller and not as intense. to quote a fellow art sister who was lucky enough to go last year, "if artfest is like espresso, journalfest is a cup of herbal tea." ohhh, i like the sound of that. i could use a nice, relaxing art-filled weekend! :)

ok, that's all for now. can't believe i found the time to do a blog entry! but i did. i guess this kind of counts for my weekly "check in" for the artistic mothers group! i still need to work on the first project: gessoing, painting and stamping my art pages. i think i will do that tonite! :)

mine! all mine! :)

Monday, March 08, 2010

Spring cleaning, new projects & vintage goodies

I spent all weekend cleaning my "studio" (aka our dining room) and organizing everything. It looks great (well, better than before!) and it feels good to see the floor again! My oldest watched the baby so I could really get some uninterrupted clean-up time. I am so ready for the rain to end and the sun to shine! And what better way to start off a new season than with a clean and organized art space. I was even able to get a few projects started. This mini basket was inspired by Artful Thursdays with Julie Collings (see the tutorial here).

I keep a basket full of spring themed items out for display to keep me inspired and ready to create when inspiration strike (or when the baby goes down for a nap!). It makes clean-up easy (just put everything back into the basket for later!) and it's a great way to keep me inspired and excited about current projects or ideas.

Even my middle daughter got in on the fun and started a few mini Easter baskets of her own. So cute!

I love the butterfly and paper lace punches by Martha Stewart! We used the paper lace strips and fuzzy pipe cleaners for the handles of the little baskets and she filled up her baskets with butterfly cut-outs. Precious!

On a whim last Friday, I attended an estate sale and found a few fun and interesting items. Perfect for spring themed projects! Vintage books, bags of ribbon...love it!

I love this tattered and worn children's book. The illustrations are sweet. I know I'll be able to recycle it into another project. And below is a sweet card that is filled with spring-themed poems and illustrations of birds. Lovely!

And Etsy always provides a wonderful assortment of vintage goodies, too!

The studio is clean, my basket of spring-themed materials is ready...all of this is just in time for starting an artistic journey. I joined the Artistic Mothers Group, hosted by Trudy Callahan. Everyone is welcome to join. The group is based on the book, "The Artistic Mother" by Shona Cole. Each week we'll be working on projects from the book and posting our progress along the way. I can't wait to get started and to see everyone's creative process!

Friday, March 05, 2010

SPRING is here...

Bought a whole bunch of fuzzy chicks from Cost Plus the other day. So many spring and Easter projects in mind! I love to celebrate the changing seasons with new and fun art projects! I'm inspired by Julie's cute mini Easter baskets (go check it out here)

Maya snagged some of the chicks for her own playful purpose...

I guess they're all going on a field trip! :)

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Etsy Treasury

The Sound of Music

I love making Etsy Treasuries. I've only made two so far, this being my second attempt. So much fun to see beautiful items grouped together in some kind of theme. Go check it out on Etsy.com and make one of your own! It's like making a little inspiration board to share with others. You can pick your favorite items or search for a specific theme. The one above was inspired by the music note ring and then from there I just typed in "music" and then added "black" and "red" to narrow it down. Fun fun! Of course, Etsy can be a dangerous place for artists (for anyone, really) because there is everything anyone could ever want (almost!). I will have to share my latest haul with ya'll, but that will be for another post. ;)


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