Thursday, February 28, 2013

Lesson Learned: Better is Not Always Better!

So I've made a couple of accordion fold domino books. The first one turned out good but I wanted the next one to be awesome. Start laughing now cause you know how the best laid plans go...not so epic!

I dyed, I painted, I trimmed, I glued, and everything looked so pretty! Then it came time to close and tie it shut. First I spent several minutes trying to get the organza ribbon to tie. That in and of itself was a feat but also the folds got all wonky. The flowers I put in were too thick! I tried to take one off but the paper came off with it of course so I glued it back down and said the heck with it. It's still pretty, it still stands, and most people won't display it closed anyway. So here's how it turned out.



Wow that looks bad! It looks worse in pictures I think.

One side open

Other side open
So lesson learned, don't put dimensional items in a domino book but I may have a way to change that....planning, planning! Tomorrow I'll show you the first one I made.

Love ya,

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Altered Match Box is Finished!

OK it's been a couple days since I've posted and I apologize but I have been working, REALLY!

Before I show you the box though, I have to show you something else. You're all used to my occasionally putting in some personal stuff though I try not to do that often. My daughter and her dog moved out three weeks ago. I'm pretty sure I mentioned that. Her dog was my big dogs play mate. She doesn't have that now and she tries hard to play with the little dogs but they aren't very fond of her because she so easily over powers them. So here is what I contend with ALL day EVERY day now!

Yes, her head is between the desk and my leg and she is staring at me wanting attention. How the heck can I ignore that and keep working??? And now because she's doing it the others think they have to too...

Sigh...they tear at my heart. Thanks for letting me share :)

Now on with the box... I say complete but I still have to put the podge on the inside of the box but I wanted to get it up here for you. If you're interested in knowing the process leave me a comment and I'll do a little tutorial on it.

Hope you're having a wonderful crafty week and I'll be back tomorrow with another project that I finished today!

Love ya,

Monday, February 25, 2013

Flea Market Finds

Well I think you all know my daughter is getting married next year. She's decided she wants a vintage themed wedding. Well how much more fun could a mom have??? I'm designing the whole thing so flea markets here we come!

We found lots of old brooches for her bouquet and a few pieces of china. We'll be doing mix and match china so as long as they were cheap, in good shape, and not God awful patterns were buying them. :)

Of course along the way I found some AWESOME stuff for my art. I spent $31 total and that included REAL CRYSTAL! I was one happy camper yesterday.

Excuse the scribble on the side there...The shot ended up taking in some personal stuff so I threw it in paint and scribbled it out real quick! :P~~~~ So there's a cigar box, a shell necklace (you'll see pieces of that very soon), a metal belt, a metal frame, two Eiffel towers, some charms and ten, yes I said 10, crystal chandelier pieces. Not bad for the money. Of course the crystal was the most expensive.

My words of advice, find a flea market near you!

Love ya,

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Birthday Golf Chick

Our whole family golfed for a long time but things change, I had kids and then got a divorce so I didn't have time for it, my parents stopped for health reasons, and I'm not really sure why my sisters quit but they don't anymore either as far as I know. We may occasionally still gold a round but it's rare for any of us.

My Mom has all kinds of friends that golf. When I saw this image, it made me smile. I knew her friends would get a kick out of it so I purchased this image from Karen Middleton over at Cuddlybuddly. I used a yellow doily and attached it to a pre-made card which I folded for the easel. The sentiment is from Create with TLC. I used some scrunched and dyed seam binding from Really Reasonable Ribbon, and some TH Broken China distress ink. Here's the end result...

Love ya,

Another Video Tutorial and a Freebie

Do you have a ton of scraps? Do you use them to stamp on and attach to cards? Do you tear them as elements? Or do you just plain throw them away? Well I have a little tip that I use mine for and I thought I'd share a video on it. Many of you may already know this technique but if you don't, you'll be glad you watched. Another way to use scraps!

So what did you think of this tip? This will probably only work with ink jet printers as one of my readers pointed out!

I also have a freebie for you. another image from one of my books, this time I didn't have to do much manipulating to get it correct, thank goodness! Hope you can use it.

Love ya,

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Freebie PD Image

I didn't get any projects done yesterday as it took almost the whole day to do our taxes...yuck! But it's done for another year so today I can play! In the mean time, I found this awesome stamp in the public Domain and thought I'd share. I didn't want to leave you with nothing! You are all to special for that. So here you go, hope you can use it.

Hard to believe postage was only 3 cents in the US a little over 50 years ago. When you look at it like that postage rates haven't changed very fast have they?

Happy Crafting Weekend to you all...Love ya,

Exciting News!

Good Morning least the news is exciting to me and I really hope you will all consider joining us over at CDAC (Crafter's Digital Arts Center). I've been invited to be Special Promotions DT member! I have been having so much fun in the forum. They have multiple challenges going every quarter, new digi's from many designers every month, galleries, create your own page in the forum, and best of all, a great group of friendly people who interact. The site was set up by Priscilla of Priscilla Styles and she is so sweet! She actually comments and doesn't just leave it to the group. So why not come join me and and 8,616 other people for some fun!

Love ya,

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Sneak Peek

I have been working on a project that is very time consuming and a bit tedious but I am loving it! It is not finished but I thought you might like a sneak peek of the image that I've been working to texturize.

I found this image in the public domain and fell in love with it the minute I saw it. It just screamed movement to me and I knew I had to make something spectacular with it. I printed it out and set it on my desk so I could stare at it and decide what I wanted to do with it. So yesterday I knew, I wanted texture, LOTS of texture. So with a toothpick, I started on this. A little at a time, then dry, a little more, dry, you get the idea. I used some oddball things to get the color and texture. For instance for the green I used a floral block that I scraped and mushed then added some glitter. I also mixed colors of glitter until I reached a specific tone. The foam on the waves is DecoArt fine texture. My point is this is definitely a lot of things combined to get this going. When it's complete,  I haven't decided if I'm going to mount this on an altered box or put it on a canvas. It's been a lot of work but totally fun and captivating. I've given you a view of the original image before altering, a side view and a top view of it as it stands today. Remember it is not complete...

Isn't she gorgeous! So what do you think of the project so far?

Love ya,

To This Day Project - Shane Koyczan

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

A St. Pat's Freebie

Let me start by saying, I'm not Irish. I don't celebrate St. Patrick's day and I don't wear green. If you pinch me I'll pinch back! Yep, I'm a little cranky like that.

I do however, love watching everyone else celebrate and be silly. Guess we all have holiday's that mean more to us then others. So in the vein of giving to those who would like to celebrate, I have a freebie for you. 

I recently started buying some books with royalty free images that I could alter. I'm still learning Paint Shop Pro and I definitely make mistakes, but I am having fun with it and that's what it's all about right? I thought learning with pre-created images before I try to digitize Jen's and my work would be a good way to practice making PNGs. So for my first debut of playing with PPS...
Put it on a black or gray background and tell me how I did, honestly. Thanks guys! PLEASE link up your creation in the sidebar if you use it.

Love ya,

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

My First Video Tutorial!

Ok so I was asked by one of the groups I belong to to make a tutorial for the flowers I used on front of the cards in my post Let Them Have Cake! (click to take you there). I drug out my webcam which I NEVER use...probably need a better one if I'm going to make more tutorials...but I did it and you can find it by clicking the picture of the flower below.

If you make one let us all know by linking up in the sidebar!

Hope it's helpful and inspiring.

Love ya,

See What You Missed!

I only had a few takers for my little extra treat. Those of you who didn't this is what you missed...

I made three varieties, pink with rose topper, blue with pink embedded flowers, and an amber with owl on nest.

For those of you who did email me, I hope you like them. Which one will be coming your way? They were mailed today so you'll find out soon. Please let me know that they arrived safely.

A HUGE HUG for all my fantastic followers and a GIGANTIC WARM WELCOME to all my new followers.

Love ya,

Monday, February 18, 2013

The Dark is Not Our Friend...Fixing Stuff

At about 1:30 in the morning yesterday when I couldn't sleep, again (sigh), I decided to color up the cute digi I had just gotten from A Day for Daisies called Owl of Mine. I don't have a good lamp on my desk and I definitely need to get one, so I was just working with the overhead light. Usually I color during the day so it's not a problem. I was happily coloring away and then went to use my mineral oil to blend and I went outside the lines. This is not an image that could be fussy cut and I had planned on die cutting around her. SCREECH!!! put on the I start over? Heck NO! Not at nearly 2 in the morning when my patience is low from lack of sleep. So that meant I had to fix it.

Here's the image, can you find the mistake? I'll give you a hint, it's on the upper half in the fairly clear area of the picture.

It's a tiny bit blurry, sorry I was trying to get a good close up.

As you see I did a light halo of blue all around her to mimic sky. I thought about doing a night sky but I like the lighter better. So that was my first fix, now look at the second picture...

Can you see it yet? Besides the blue halo, the Stickles help distract the eye bit. 

Now for a real close up...I think you'll actually be able to see it now.

So what do you think? Pretty good clean up? The lesson here is that you don't always have to throw away your work and start over. With a little ingenuity you can blend it in enough to where it doesn't show unless someone overly scrutinizes. Hope this is helpful to any of you out there that are perfectionists like me. :)

And here is the finished card...

Love ya,


Hi Everyone, I have a special request of you. It's hard to keep up with everyone....

 but I have an easy answer!
If you go into your Google profile and update your information and add your blog (if you have one) as a link it'll be easier for us to come see your wonderful creations. Then all you have to do is click the picture or the name in the comment area and it brings you up, click on the blog link and away we go to your wonderland! Would everyone mind doing this, please, please, with sugar on top? If you need help email me and I'll walk you through it.

Thanks guys you're the best!

Love ya,

Sunday, February 17, 2013

A Tag and Another Bookmark

Boring title I know...couldn't think of anything better :(

I made this tag a while ago but never quite finished it. I used an SSD (Sassy Studio Design) image that I cropped. I inked and then embossed the tag, added some velum ephemera and hung a charm from it. Then I added the feathers, the sexy little image, and the ribbon on top. Pretty simple and quick.

For this bookmark, I went with owl theme again still trying to stay in the some what masculine thread. I think this one is more androgynous though. If you're like me you stay up way to late reading because you get so enthralled with the book that you can't put it down.

See his little blood shot eyes?
The sentiment says "I'll regret this in the morning".
I was going to say "owl" regret this but thought it was probably passe'.

The owl image is from Jaded Blossom

Don't stay up to late tonight!

Love ya,

Saturday, February 16, 2013

A Book Mark for a Grown Up Boy

David, my son, is 17. He considers himself grown and he IS very manly. He even has a beard and moustache. So I couldn't do a boyish book mark for him. It had to be something he'd appreciate and use.

So I created it, gave it to him and here's what he said...

" Oh Mom this is awesome! Love the old owl on top of the books, makes me want to read right now. And the clock at the top just sets the whole thing off! You're right reading is my solace. Books are just so comforting. I love you Mom! Thanks for making this for me."

Such emotional creatures men! Stop already you're making me blush! Cool right? It's such a warm feeling inside when your kids GET IT.

Image is from the Graphics Fairy
Embossing is Cuttlebug Script

A purple book mark for a guy you ask? Why's his favorite color.

In this pic I washed out the background so you could see the owl a bit better. I used my usual Prisma colored pencil technique that you can read about here (I had a cheap camera then so the quality of photos isn't nearly as good as they are now. maybe I should do another one.). I am really happy with how the shading turned out on this.  

So would you like to hear how the conversation really went?

Me..."I made this for you, hope you like it."
David..."The clock doesn't work"
Me..."Smart ass...You're welcome"
David..."Ya Thanks"

Boys! Such minions of words and emotion. 

Love ya,

Your Year of Birth

Ever wonder what all occurred the year you were born? I know you don't were... well a baby! Here's a fantastic site that tells you all about that year, or any year for that matter if you care to surf through varying ages.

In my birth year, the first animated manga series I didn't know manga went back that far. The computer mouse was invented...really? Computer's existed then LOL, I'm a dinosaur according to my kids, that can't possibly be true.  Iron Man and Cyclops first appeared in comics that year, Lamborghini cars are invented, but they missed the biggest event. JFK was shot. Figure out the year of my birth yet? Go see what happened in your year.

The Year of My Birth
The screen is going to fade to black; have your glasses on, and follow the instructions below.
You'll be pleasantly surprised with this one...
Type the year only!! Then click the question (?) mark!

Sit back and enjoy!! Click below...


Love ya,

Last Chance to Get the Treat I Offered

Hi Everyone! In my giveaway post I offered all my lovely followers a consolation prize of sorts. I need your mailing address if you would like one. Sunday at 5 pm CST is the deadline so email me quick at hrspecdeb (@) yahoo (dot) com. It's not much but I think you'll like it. What are you waiting for? Go for it!

Love ya,

Friday, February 15, 2013

For the Love of Reading

I don't know about you but I love to read. I love to get caught up in some mystery or tale and totally immerse myself in someone else's life even if it is usually fictional. I can picture the faces, the scenes, the horror, what ever it is in that particular story and my emotions sweep me away to a far away place. I truly love the imaginative adventure.

When my kids were little I would read to them, they grew and stopped wanting that but neither of them liked to read for themselves. Finally, when each reached high school, the love of reading began to spread through them too and they are both VORACIOUS readers now. I can hardly keep up with all the downloads for their kindle & ipads. Really, it's more reasonable to buy the downloads (occasionally free even) then buy the paper books but sometimes they just want that textile feel of having the real thing in their hand, my son especially. So today I decided to make some bookmarks. Both are feminine so I will have to come up with one for my son too but I thought they could use them or give them to friends or whatever they want. More a memory of me for later in life than anything else :)

 This one has a Parisian theme. First I dabbed on TH Broken China and Wild Honey distress inks. Next I spritzed it, but it didn't blend enough so i took a wet paint brush and kind of swished it all over. I did this to both sides. I then used a script stamp and some Stampin' Up Close to Cocoa ink to make another layer. The Eiffel Tower stamp in the back I embossed with Recollections powder and TH Perfect Medium. I attached the burlap, roses, and button charm, then printed out the digi images. The adorable Easter Bunnies photo came from Altered Artifacts and the stamp and postmark from the Graphics Fairy. I attached some Offray ribbon at the top after inking slightly to age it a bit.

The next one is much the same process except I used a chippie which I painted pink, dabbed white  ink on and then sanded a tiny bit to distress. I also add some pink self stick pearls from Michael's and a Zva Creative pearl flourish. I also Mod Podged on some tissue and then to make the whole thing sturdier I Mod Podged the whole book mark. This sweet little image came from Sugar Lump Studios.

For the back I printed my business info directly over the distressed ink before I podged it.

I'm in a streak so I'll have a couple more tags or bookmarks for you tomorrow. Thanks for visiting today, go grab a book and snuggle down and have some you time!

Love ya,

Spring is Springing!

As I drove past the back wall of our yard today I noticed the daffodils are in bloom so of course I had to run out and get a pic. Someone had planted these before we bought the house and each spring I watch them come up and am always cheered by their bright color and happy faces. It's an odd area where they are located and you can't see them from the house. Maybe i should replant them...just seems like a sacrilege to move them though.

See the back of the wall? More are coming up there. Aren't they just so cheerful?

I am not a winter person so finally Spring is Springing!!! Yippie (kickin' up my heels)! I am ready to start my spring cards and projects now.

Love ya,

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Love on Valentines Day!

Happy Valentines Day to you all! I have lots of love in my heart for all my crafty friends out there in blog land. Connecting like this makes the world a better place and I am extremely happy that the Internet exists and allows us to make new friends that are far away.

I hope you got a good chuckle out of my sewing story yesterday. I guess I'll never learn to sew even though I have a sister that is a great seamstress and a mom and daughter who can sew. That gene skipped me :)

Jelly Park had the cutest little image this month for  her charity for 2013 the Sick Children's Trust you can find out more about it on her website here. Basically she sells digi's to raise money for a charity each year. Then she has a challenge with the digi if you purchase it. So I'll be entering my card into the challenge.

Don't forget to check out the close up of my ribbon that looks sort of sewn (he he he).

I wanted it to look like a big blanket behind the image since to me it looks like he's in in footy pajamas. I slapped some Mod Podge on the front of the card and the sprinkled the pink and white Flower Soft all over. I put a piece of scrap paper on top and mushed it all in good so it would be sure to stick.

While that was drying I colored up this cutie.

When sewing the edge didn't work AT ALL!!! I found this ribbon in my stash and though Ah ha! This looks like it's sewn so I used it for the "blanket" edging. I found the ribbon in the dollar bins at Target. The company is called Made for Retail ...Really  ??? Yep really. So I gathered and glued and held each section down with clothespins while it dried.

I added the ribbon with it's long tails but I still wasn't happy so I found this in my stash. My daughter's niece left them behind when they moved. It was originally a ponytail holder.

And here's the inside. The paper is some that I got from Nikki at Graphix and Designs in a candy package so I don't know who made it. I designed the little sentiment in word and then popped it up on foam pads and added the two tiny bows.

It didn't turn out exactly as I wanted but I think it still works and it was for a good cause! I think you could use this for V'day or Easter, don't ya think?

So what do you think of my alternative to stitching? Pretty inventive eh?

Happy Valentines Day! Love ya,

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

A Secret....Shhhh

You all know by now that I like and am fairly good at lots of different types of crafts. Here's something I bet you didn't know. I can't sew, not a stitch with a machine anyway. Every time I try I get gummed up thread on the back, uneven lines, it always looks like a kindergartner did it. Actually I think a kindergartner could probably do a better job! I suck, plain and simple. :)

Today I attended a seminar over at Lay out a Day called Get Your Stitch On. The theme was all about sewing on paper and I thought that would be so cool if I could learn to at least do that. Great information, fun class with fun people. Aftewardr I pulled out the sewing machine and a project and gave it a whirl. Guess what!!!! I still suck LOL, couldn't do it. I tried all the tips she gave and still it looked like doo doo. So what was my answer? BUY RIBBON THAT LOOKS LIKE IT WAS SEWN! He he he... I knew I'd find a way around it.

With that in mind, I am finishing the project and will have it ready for you to see later today or tomorrow at the latest. The project is even a charitable one so I'm glad I could make it work.

Til then...

Love ya,

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Pins for a Swap

Hi everyone,

I am so excited to be taking part in my first swap. It's being hosted on The Stamping Boutique's Crafter's Cafe. The spec's are to use pink or red beads and hearts if you have them. So yesterday I went shopping and not a single red heart to be found. I had a specific design in mind so needless to say I was disappointed. I did find some purple ones so I bought them and brought them home and made them anyway. They turned out so pretty!

Now I had to figure out what to do for the swap. My husband was going out for a hair cut today so I asked him to stop at a store and look for some red hearts for me. He's so sweet about doing things like this. He's not artistic at all and so out of his element but, he always does it for me and with a smile. Success! He found some and so I repeated the pins in red and in 15 minutes (not including dry time) they were ready to be sent out to the swap. I loved that it was a quick project and that they turned out exactly as I saw it in my mind's eye.

So for the swap:

and for the first batch:

What do you think? Would you like one of these to come to you if you were in a swap?

I'm also going to enter them in Tuesday Alchemy challenge "My Hearts All a Flutter" wish me luck!

Another Challenge I'm entering these into is CDAC "Anything Goes Challenge"

Love ya,