Sunday, June 18, 2017


 Every Summer is the same hard decision, trying to decide on what classes to sign up for at Artful Gathering. There are two sessions and each session is filled with wonderful artists that I so admire who give of their time and talents to share these classes. This summer, I managed to work in two classes both in Session 1 beginning in June and ending in mid- July.
I just finished my first class with Penny McDonald on "Of Spent and Aged Things".  This class drew me in on first sight because it involved making a Cage Doll Assemblage all from found items and sculpting.  Anyone that knows me knows that assemblage and Cage Dolls are some of my very favorite things to make. I made these two dolls inspired by Penny's class.

I'm already planning on next Summer's classes. This week I will be off to begin my second class with Darlene McElroy, "Mystical Magical Gesso with a Twist". I can't wait to get started and I'll be back when class is over to share my creations inspired by Darlene's class- stay tuned...

Happy Summer and Happy Creating!
"Trust the Mess"




A very special thank you to Christin Hammons editor of Somerset Studio over at Stampington and Company. She did a beautiful layout of my packing tape cards in  the July/August issue of Somerset Studio. I love to make these cards (below are samples of some of them) to put in my packages when people purchase my art.  If you would like to read more about them, you can see them in the new issue of Somerset Studio available July 1st. I hope wherever you are, you are being inspired by someone or something, and your Summer is creatively wonderful!

Thursday, June 1, 2017


  That very question came to me face to face as I was working on this project for my monthly post for Retro Cafe Art Gallery and looking for some inspiration for to add to the sails of my boat. Sitting directly across from me on my work space is a project that I have been putting off for some time just because it is totally out of my comfort zone. Each time I look at it, doubt sets in and I find plenty of reasons to get busy on something else. Fear also keeps me from doing a number of things in my life that I am sure I would be set free as a bird if I only gave them a try. I tend to be very independent, subborn and strong willed so I have made it my goal this year to no longer be held hostage by fear. Since fear does keep most of us from living our full potential in one way or another, I decided to address it, big and bold on the sails of my boat project for this months post.This project was something I do love to do... and the other, well, that's a work in progress. No one holds us back from our Dreams, but ourselves. I love the quote I found for the side of the boat, "Your Dreams Await You, on the other side of Fear". 

I started this project sailboat by gluing the boat together first and while it was drying, I began working on the sails. I used some ivory linen    adhesive pages and cut them to fit the sails back and front. Then I stamped on them and used Tim Holtz distressed ink pad to edge them. Once stamped, I grabbed my box of painted paper scraps from previous projects and cut pieces to stamp my words on for one side of the sail. The other side of the sail, I sewed painted scrap pieces to teabags and glued them on.
 Then I cut a butterfly from material I had and glued it to a piece of cardboard and sewed around it, adding the words: 

After I embellished the sails, I glued them to the sail frames and let them dry. Then I painted the boat and added a quote to the front. To the back of the boat I added a Tim Holtz chipboard word that reads: 
                     "FOLLOW YOUR HEART".
 The little boy and girl are from Tim Holtz's paper dolls and I stood them up by using the theater stands from Retro Cafe Art Gallery. They work perfect and I didn't even have to glue them in. They can be moved around or even taken out. The fish I added to the boy is a die cut from Retro Cafe as well.

                "Hark, now hear the sailors cry,
                 Smell the sea and feel the sky
         Let your Soul and Spirit Fly, into the mystic.."
             Van Morrison
                               YOU MIGHT JUST SOAR!

Wishing you a great adventure, what are you waiting for?


Ranger Ink Sticky Back Canvas
Hampton Arts Stamp, All Night Media
Acey Deucy and Stampabilities
Mini Letter Stamps
Stazon Ink Pad- Black
Tea Bags
Painted Paper Scraps
Butterfly Material
Card Stock
Sewing Machine
Acrylic Paint
Tim Holtz Paper Dolls

Saturday, April 29, 2017


 As a design team member for Retro Cafe Art Gallery, I get to do a post once a month using some of their fabulous designs. I have long admired the beautiful crowns made by other team members, but I never tried my hand at making one of my own. When I tried to come up with a design, I began dreaming and quickly fell down the rabbit hole... then this happened. This would make a darling cake topper, party favors or table decoration for a Mad Hatter Tea Party.
  The crown itself starts with a chipboard piece that hooks together with a brad (you can also glue it, I do both), then you begin painting. 

This was my first attempt with Patina Paste and it is ridiculous how easy it is to use to achieve so many beautiful effects.

The first thing I did was to smooth and attach the crown together with glue and the brad. Then I used the Blue paste patina covering the crown back and front. Once dry, I added another layer using the Brass patina paste. While that was drying, I added two strips of Dresden Foil trim around the bottom of the crown and then glued on some jewel embellishments.
 Next I took the Alice in Wonderland Chipboard cut outs and painted them with acrylic Metallic paint on the back and the front I just painted the edges.

 Once dry, I glued the Alice in Wonderland paper cuts to the matching chipboard pieces. Then I took some of the Brass patina paste and went around the edges of each figure to give it the appearance of brass.
The little figures are so adorable, (insert tip can also get the stands for them so they stand alone). The next step was to decide which ones I wanted to use and where to place them on the crown. I made the choice to glue them from the inside so they didn't cover up any of the crown's design. I like to use the clear adhesive (E6000) for attaching pieces like this, it dries quickly and is strong.

Falling down the rabbit hole while dreaming is not all that bad.. Thank you for visiting today. 

Dresden Foil Trim
Jewel embellisments

Saturday, April 1, 2017


  My children always loved and preferred the stories that we created together, weaving tales gathered from the world of possibilities where there are no limits to what one can pull from a hat or from a tiny door in the baseboard. The Shrine of Magical Tales are where those stories are born.
  Even though my Shrine is not Easter themed, I thought these 2 Chocolate Easter Bunnies I created from Retro Cafe Art Gallery looked right at home with my "Shrine of Magical Tales".
When I ordered the Large  Divinity Antiquity Shrine from Retro Cafe Art Gallery, I had something totally different in mind to create with it for my April post as a Design Team member for Retro Cafe Art Gallery. I also ordered some collage sheets for different projects. This one particular collage sheet was laying next to the shrine as I was unpacking my box and immediately I thought, "why  not?" and that was that. My direction completely changed.

 I started this shrine by gluing all the pieces together with a clear tacky glue and letting dry. After drying, I glued on strips of paper for a background that I would later gesso over different areas. I covered the entire shrine in paper using a selection of torn paper from my stash and a glue stick.
 Then I used white gesso putting it on with my fingers and covered over different areas of the paper, not covering all the images but just blending them together.

 Then I took and scribbled script in different areas. Next, I cut out images from the collage sheet ( I ordered the sticker collage sheet paper) and placed them where I would want them, trimming them up, before peeling off the back paper and sticking them on. Once they were adhered, I took the gesso again with my fingers and blended the edges and kept working with it in different areas. Then I took an ivory acrylic paint, again with my fingers, and rubbed over the gesso in areas so it would not be so stark white.

To give it more dimension, I did use a brush on the inside of the inside corners of the shrine and and other areas brushing on  some brown antiquing medium and wiped off the excess with a baby wipe.

Next, I painted one of Retro's Oval Cameo frames just using my fingers, (they come in a set of three) and added the word, "Magical" from Tim Holtz Small Talk Word Stickers.
It was really hard for me not to add a lot of color to this Shrine, but it still needed something so I added some gold Dresden foil after rubbing the pieces with Inka Gold (Brown Gold color). The Dresden foil on the top piece and side pieces were cut from one of the Dresden foil Victorian Decorations. Dresden foil always seems to be the magical touch.

I ordered two Chocolate Bunnies with Easter around the corner and at the time, I had no idea that my direction for the Shrine would change and the Bunnies would fit so well with it. I immediately grabbed those Easter Bunnies and began preparing them. To my surprise again, they were the perfect size to add to the Shrine.

Easter Bunnies:
Two in a package - glue bunny to base
I painted in a brown acyrlic paint-both sides
Added two white with black dot eyes on both sides
Painted the ribbons
Added Dresden Foil trim around the bases with a glue stick and seal the bases with Matt Gel Medium  

Thank you for being here. I hope you will join me for next month's post and creative magic in between!
Most all of my creations if interested, can be found in my Etsy shop for sale.  XO

Glue Stick
Black Pen
Folk Art Antiquing Medium
Acylic Paint 
Artist paper for tearing
Sticker Collage Sheets: