Year 2013 & Year 2014 2

Year 2013 & Year 2014 2

Monday, March 16, 2015

Compendium of Curiosities Challenge #24: "Rise Above"

       Feeling much better this weekend and sending everyone a huge SMILE and hope you are welcoming SPRING today the way we here in Indiana did- 70* out and the sun was shining!!! Ohmagosh! I totally think THIS is the FIRST time EVER this year it has even actually been SUNNY out without dark clouds hovering over us somewhere on the horizon! And that alone was enough to get me feeling much better. :)  My original plan as I created this on Saturday (yup- believe it peeps- the very day Challenge 24 was issued to us...yeah, yeah, yeah, my Besties are just NOT gonna believe this one cause my middle name shouldda been "Late" instead of Louise), was to post this on Friday- the actual first day of Spring 2015. But today's weather got the best of me. And the ChiefHubby chose to take one of his 25 weekday vaca days today just to work on his boat. (I kinda thought that old tub was just to 'sit out there and use when we feel like fishing', but it's turned into another 'DavidProject' and the pumpkin is slowly emerging into a pretty chariot. :) Men are SO like us ladies; they just gotta get something and CREATE out of it. I tend to think our lady stuff COSTS alooooooot LESS.
       But anyway.... I came up with my idea right off the bat after the Challenge was issued simply because I am "WEIRD"! How many of you watched the Oscars this year?? If you did, then you know exactly what I am on the path to: "Go ahead and be DIFFERENT; stay weird!" Now, I am fully Christian, so I don't condone alot of shenanigans that alot of celebrities do. But, there is a HUGE difference between the titles of 'Actor' and 'Celebrity'. An actor worries about his CRAFT; the job of making the audience feel emotiion over the character he/she is portraying. A celebrity only worries about the publicity he or she garners, and very rarely do they care about anything other than 'staying on top'. Actors usually earn alot less money and are much less seen in public. (I will give margin for likes of Julia Roberts, Tom Hanks, Kevin Costner, and Harrison Ford, who are hugely famous, but also HUGELY talented.) But this unkown guy got up there in front of everyone watching, admitted that he -at one time in his past- thought he was worthless and almost comitted suicide. He felt he didn't 'fit in anywhere' or 'wasn't like everyone else', but he kept on and what was percieved by others as his "weirdness" paid off; there he was up on the podium with a much-coveted award that few win once in their lifetime for their film creation (whatever their part in it was).
      His acceptance speech was for those of us who consider ourselves 'weird' (too loud, too soft, too picky, too OCD, too unchoosey, too choosey, too silly, too pesky, too 'star-trekky'spacey, or even too serious)....Well, GOD made us exactly as HE wanted each person to BE. Not that HE doesn't want us to mold more to being like HIM, which of course HE does, but GOD also told us that HE created us in HIS Image yet made each one of us different!!! AWESOME!!! So, yeah, I am gonna just keep on being the person I am. And I am gonna keep on tossing out all those 'nice' things to say to others, toss over the smiles by the tons, and keep reaching out to help others BE HAPPY, and BE LOVED. And as Sir Paul McCartney sang: "What's wrong with THAT?!" The answer is the same as then: "NOTHING AT ALL!"

The full front of my entry.

I doubled on the tags to start with- knowing I wanted one as a plain backside.

I loved the idea I came up with for the 'dirt and grass'- the common ground from which all the flowers come. ;) 
            Since I am done so early, I hope that gives me alot more time to pop into Linda Ledbetter's blog to peek in on everyone else's entries and just with a click- pop over to their blogs to see all each is doing. (It's really NICE to be able to do that on Tim Holt'z Blog w the 12Tags, too!) And, as usual for each Challenge of the CC3 (Compendium of Curiosity Vol 3 by Tim) Tim and Mario Rossi provide prizes, as well as The Funkie Junkie  (where I've already won a great set of prizes), and Inspiration Emporium  (who keep tons of Tim stuff in stock).
           Even if you can't participate, give it a peek anyway- the talent in there is nothing short of AMAZING! if not totally inspiring!!  Thanks everyone- for the get well wishes, kind comments, and just any SMILES that were put on faces as a result of looking in on my posts. Take care, stay safe, and as always;
                                                           Happy Blogging!

Friday, March 13, 2015

Compendium of Curiosities Challenge #23 ; My Westward, HO! Folio...

      I am racing the clock on this CC3Challenge simply because I didn't have all I needed and had to order a few things online (which took the first week), and then I got hit by the big, mean, nasty Flu Bug this past week. Unfortunately for me, whenever I get sick with anything, it brings on an even nastier flare-up of Rheumatoid Arthritis. So as soon as the flu hit, I was pretty much stuck in bed and unable to move because the joints swell and bring on terrible pain. It's as if thousands of tiny people wrap each and every joint of your body in duct tape, then proceed to pound on the joints with the heaviest sledgehammer they can find on planet Earth. That was three days lost. So I really literally burned the midnight oil to finish (I'd had the plan scetched out and the project base-papered before getting sick. That means I am posting this in the 'nick of time', so there's just photos this time, and I'll try to get up a video of it at a later date- if I can.
     Please join the Challenge if you can- it's been alot of FUN! The crafters involved all do tremendously beautiful work!!! And there are prizes from Tim Holtz- the author/designer of CoC, and his BTS helper, Mario Rossi. Not to mention prizes from Inspiration Emporium , and the Funkie Junkie Boutique (where I won my choice prizes for Challenge #20 random drawing). You'll need to have your own copy of Tim's Book, and we're not allowed to share any 'how to's on any of the techniques taught for each particular Challenge. So without any further ado, here's my entry for CC3 Challenge #23 which I named in honor of my hopes for a trip out west for the ChiefHubby and I: The "Westward, HO!" Folio.

The front shows alot of the things that are involved in not only the TIME to take to see it all and get away from home, but the things Ireally want to see or visit, as well.

One of my very fave dies- the M&S clock key !! I had some fun with bits of trim.

Very SPACIOUS pocket folders for CAST (the travelers), PROPS (the stuff we buy or bring home), EXTRAS (made from newspaper cardstock hehe for the ppl we meet or anyone going along), and SCENES (photos of action or happenings). Larger photos are in the middle called "ON LOCATION" for that reason. SCRIPTS (intentionally misspelled as we always end up REVISING our plans no matter what).

A REAL pen in it's look-at, fixed-on holder.

I hope to be able to add my own photos to this section, but for now....this is what it looks like for filling purposes.

I printed TWO large is cardstock and the top is see-through printable vellum. A nighttime over the daytime.

One of the places we MUST see is the Hollywood sign. I hope we can spend a full day hiking that. Here's someone else's photo for now- daytime on bottom cardstock and top is vellum nighttime over it.

The bottom is a world map of TH resist stash- distress painted and swiped down. I also made another folder that is free to move out of the folio. Music will be playing all along the trip.

The inside of a few of my large tags give me plenty of space for whatever I am doing- writing a full story, miliage tabs, reciepts or what have you, that I always seem to come back home with.

The backside is left plain so I can have a flat surface to write on while riding shotgun with the ChiefHubby...
Westward, HOOOOOooooooooooo!
         Thanks so much for checking in again! I am hoping to get some relax time in so I can read up on some blogs of others for a bit this weekend. And hopefully be rid of the flu bug totally. So much for those shots, eh? lol
                                 Be Safe and Happy Blogging !

Friday, March 6, 2015

MARCH TAG- The 12 Tags of 2015

I doubt there is anyone who is following Tim's 12 Tags of 2015 who did NOT like his March Tag and all the vibrant lovely colors of this! All I could say was "WOW"! And like most of the rest, I could hardly wait to get going. Yeah- I checked in and found a ton of ppl already posted theirs while I am thinking I'm earlier than my usual 'always late'. ;) So here's what I came up with after ditching my first design idea of a bird getting outside its cage. Since I'd just done a project with the same idea, I wasn't so hot on it. But the more I thought about it, the wilder my idea got and I ended up with two tags that are pretty cool, I think!

Here's my entry photo. The tag on the left- "HOPE" is for my own collection, while the tag on the right- "WISH" is for a Bestie whose birthday was just yesterday. (No, I didn't miss it!)

Actually, I ran into a HUGE PROBLEM. I started out pretty good as you can see...

While Tim wanted to use clear embossing so he didn't have 'specks' that usually show up when it's color emboss, I DID want those specks! They make the 'shadow' look sort of vintage, I think, and I really LOVE that look. So I used something 'spongy' to make my shape emboss onto the tags. And I really liked how it turned out. BUT...

You can see from this photo how the lettering on the paste is.. well.... BLAH!! Nothing else describes it well enough.  At this point, I kept on with my plan and did the backs of both tags and began what I wanted to add to the fronts. I used an Emboss Plate that was 'Daisys' to give the back a little touch of 'Spring' without really doing anything else to it.

Here's where I took a coupld of IdeOlogy Enameled Tags and stuck a few Remnant Rubs onto them. I keep all the odds and ends of the Numbers Rubs because you never know where you can stick those into a design like I did here.

It was at this point I gave up ENTIRELY on those first two tag fronts. So, back to the Craft Sheet, so to speak. And frankly, I was much more pleased with this second set than I was with the first as far as colors go!

Here's where I went wrong the first time: I figured out from studying my own work compared to Tim's via my iPad, that I was pressing way too hard on the paste and smashing it under the Stencil instead of just FILLING the spaces of the Stencil. Ok. Problem FOUND. Now to SOLVE my problem by taking this second time 'round a wee bit easier on the putty!

Here are both tags of the first try and second try all next to each other. You can obviously see a HUGE difference! On my second set-which is in the middle- the left is yet to be heated while the right is already heated and done. WOW!! This time I could yell "NAILED IT!!!", and I think I did. lol

Now onto my own deviation from Tim's tag- the computer part. I wanted REAL photos inside that die cut from Tim's Alterations Picture Wheel. To do that, I would need two sides for each wheel. Double that up for toughness so you could really turn the wheel AND not come into touch contact with oily fingers to ruin the printer ink on the vellum....I cut four wheel from Tim's Resist stash and used some Tarnished Brass Distress Paint then wiped each with a rag so you could see the design through the color, and used Glossy Accents to put the double sides together to ready them for the printout wheel to go between. But first, I had to DESIGN the inside wheel. Not a hard thing to do when you're a photographer and that is what YOU DO. And what you've been doing for years for others. So I made my wheel, spent a couple hours finding my Bestie some photos of her own family and some "springy' flower photos I always take out here every year of what I and my friends plant and grow. Then I did the same for my tag wheel, too.

After I have a pattern, I save it on my files for future use. All I need to do later is just add the photos I want. Here's the finished vellum for this project, ready for cutting and using some GAccents to put together.

And HERE'S the wheel! This one's for my own- you can easily see me standing in front of the ocean from one of last year's 6 trips to Florida's Emerald Coastline. And my Hunni Pi's face nosed right up to my camera, too!

I added as many pics of all us Besties together as I could find right off, some of her kids out here in the pool, and some of the stuff the ChiefHubby and I attend with them. Their kids are kind of like our adopted Gandkids.

Here's what the backs look like. Just simple, but cute.

The results of the technique of paste and embossing powder is nothing short of REALLY COOL looking stuff!

I took the tags outside after I got them done (just 14 hours ago), and put them up against the sunlight...COOL!

LOVE how you can see not only the photo inside the window, but it looks as if the design in all over the actual wheel! I hope she likes it, and more than that- we wish her a: WONDERFULLY HAPPY BIRTHDAY! With a great many, many more years to come, BJ!!!

What a fun tag this one has been- even though it took me two times to get it right, practice makes perfect.  Thanks so much for taking a look at my March Tag, and I hope to be looking at YOURS posted onto Tim Holtz's Blog as the month goes on! Until next time; Happy Blogging !!

A Bit of Whimsy; "Everyday Chronicles of Imperfection"

Sometimes, when I am in the middle of another hilarious story, I'll see this look on a face that says "No way," and all I can add at the end is; "WAY!". For the simple reason that the fun and funniest things often happened to our own family. (Try asking about the stop in the St. Joseph, Mich, Kilwin's for ice cream and the walk through the downtown of our four family members...with ChiefHubby leading the way. He stops suddenly at the corner as the light MUST'VE changed to red...and none of the rest of us noticed. The back of Chief's ultra-white Tshirt had a permanent smiley regular chocolate flavor. :D  lol I'm giggling over just that part even though it's 3am as I type this, and I'm ready to drop.) The life we lived here was- and still is- fun. That's not to say we didn't have our ups and downs like every other married couple with two kids and a busy life. We had our share of problems and stress along the way, that's for sure! But, I thank GOD each and every day we not only got through all of it; we came through still together!
I had planned for a long while now, to try something 'whimsical' and on the 'steampunk' side that I absolutely LOVE. I was disappointed to find I didn't have the product needed for the CC3 Challenge #22, so I was going to have to sit that one out. The kids were all on my mind (remember that they are now all busy with their own lives and don't live nearby any longer- the younger son and wife now live clear up in Minnesota- and the older one lives just 20 mins away, but works the same heavy schedule as the ChiefHubby), and the above story came into those thoughts. I wondered how I could make something out of the crazy things that seem to happen to ONLY US. And the above photo shows what I came up with. I'll take you through it with photos with captions on them...

After making my own tissue-printed paper (plain roll of tissue paper used in sewing- my mother gave me a roll of hers) using some of my fave TH stamps... I started with an 8 1/2 x 11 manilla cardstock, cut in half and trimmed into a tag shape. I used the same technique we did on our January Tags, and ended up with a cool steam-punky, old-looking background. I used some of my stock of frame matboard to cut several cages from the TH Alterations Die "Caged Bird". 

Here, you can see the cage as it is taking shape by my trimming, fitting, and sanding until each piece of three cages fit together to form one large cage. I was doing this while the TH Alterations "Weathered Clock" pieces dried from the Distress Black Soot Paint coating. I cut those from TH grungepaper, and since I wanted it to stand out from the background, I doubled up on those cuts. 

Here, you can see how each of the three cuts of "Caged Bird" fit together, and as an added touch- I used my shears to slice some TH Tissue Tape (in musical notes because both our boys were in Band for 8 yrs each) to hold the top layer togeher.

Now you'll see what I meant from the last caption "top layer" being held together with tissue tape...I made another layer of just the OUTSIDE of the cage and used Glossy Accents to hold it all around on the underside. Then I added a THIRD 'layer' by using the EDGES of the pop-dot pkg. The edges are very thin- the thinnest part in the pkg- and saves alot of struggle trying to slice the larger pieces. They fit perfectly under all that second layer. I now had a fully sided cage that was 'empty' in the middle.

So, I needed some 'people' to make up our family as we were way back when the boys were younger and we were doing all the traveling with them. I started out with older boys and a dapper older guy- all cut from my TH French stash paper. But then I found.....ME!! This lady was found after I got the idea to google some old cabinet cards. I was looking at all the ones I have of actual family we are descended from that I scanned off some time back, when it hit me "why not just use some ppl off of the same cabinet cards from the net??" , and I found the perfect lady, followed by the perfect vintage FIRECHIEF!! Then followed the boys. Add some wings, hats, and trinkets from my stash...and they became US! The funny part is the lady is actually pulling on her collar. But she looks like she just MIGHT BE PLUGGING HER EARS...LOL!!! Yeah, this deaf gurl can ignore it when she wants ta!

So here, you see our OlderCaptFFSon...dressed in a little Sailor outfit (a nod to his NAVY girl, whom we love!). He's standing with his Dad, but sneaking away at the same time. This was my way of showing he's 'with us' always but is out on his own, and they are living their own lives also. :D

And this little swingin' fella is our YoungerPurdueNukeEngineerSon. He is actually swingin' away waaaay up there in Minnesota (a nod to his Purdue Edu English-with Distinction- Teacher wife; the hat where he works at Prairie Island Nuclear Facility- where she hopes she will be teaching)!  

And here is the ChiefHubby with his red wings of course. You'll notice that the clock key is sitting nearby where he can pick it up and wind up the clock and get his wife moving and following him wherever he goes. Ahhhh! But therein lies the conundrum...

And here is the Chiefy's Wifey. Since the Chief and the boys are in their usual colors (red for David, green for Brian, and blue for Brett) as I have always done....I put myself in my usual pink. I added a bit of bling to my wings and outfit and it turned out lovely!

The conundrum is: Wifey has the key to the bird cage and it's tangled all around her while she is busy ignoring the noise of the singing going on in the cage. The ChiefHubby can't get to the key since he is in the cage, but he has the clock that controls the time and all that the Wifey is doing. Of course, he can reach the clock to wind it up and keep her busier, but she doesn't have time to get the key and let him out. The kids just go on doing their own things the entire time.

I thought the title was cute. And I added an IdeOlogy Monocle to the pin to highlight part of the title, along with the thoughts of "no matter how much we WISH and try so hard to STEER our lives and the things that doesn't always go the way we plan.

This was the reason for having two tags- one for the backside to stand alone with nothing else on it.

You can see the Silver Metalic Alcohol Ink splattered when the backgrounds are seen from the flat perspective. LOVE that effect! 

And this was how I chose to display my Whimsical Tag! As you can see, I have a couple of others on my trunks that I made in the past couple of years. The very bottom tag was one of the Tags of 2013 and the one on the upper left was another one of those 'just playing' times in my studio. The trunks are used to store fabrics, yarn, lights, boxes, and other stash items that take up space but are still used often enough to need to be kept around. 

Thanks again for taking the time to peek in! I hope to be back getting busy with CC3Challenge #23 this weekend, since I just got my March Tag done yesterday and am posting it next. :D
Once SUMMER finally gets here, I won't be in my studio much at all. But I'll still be crafting away- with plans to make a couple of blankets for a Children Adoption Shower gift.
See you on the flip post, and Happy Blogging !

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Handcrafted Very Cool Bracelets For Summer 2015...

Summer will be here before we know it....(Ok, cut the crap on me and let me DREAM! The snow is definitely getting to me now!)...and I am always left scrambling at the last minute for planning any kind of wardrobe. I'm a 'strange' kinda gurl, I guess, because I dislike any kind of clothes shopping. Actually DETEST is probably not too strong a description here. I am forever at home in a bikini, shorts & T or jeans and T, with a hoodie jacket and Crocs, flips, or some kind of jogging shoes (I have the Skeletoes and LOVE them!), or if I am out ridinig, or mucking stalls at my Bestie's house- good ol' cowgirl work-loosened boots with a sturdy, short heel for gripping the stirrups (or kicking the poo...whatever needs to be done, ya know.) When I was younger, I LOVED being on bareback with just a rope lead and nothing else between me and the horse. Think: "The Black Stallion" here. ;)
Because over the years of riding, while learning how to grip with the knees as should be done (I was one of the many who learned the HARD way ...ouch!), my butt and I came to an 'understanding' and we made a compromise on using a SADDLE. Not that it lets you get 'soft', though. *shrug*  But just like my simplistic style of dress, I have learned to add a few things here and there, and I kinda think to myself: "Self, you sure can shine up like a new penny when you WANT to!"  : D

I've always been fond of rings. Everyone knows that about me- especially my Chiefhubby, who has purchased my many nice baubles. But I remember wearing alot of bracelets in my teens- mostly leather or  the plain hemp kind. But I had -and still have- three very special gold bracelets; the Mickey Mouse, Minnie, Pluto, Daisy, and Goofy charms all still dangling that was a Christmas Gift from Grandpa & Grandma Dougherty (ChiefHubby's) the year he and I married, the Spiedel chain with engraved name on it from my closest older brother for my birthday one year, and a gold herringbone from the Chief himself...all cared for and still shiny. But the 70s were laid back, leather, hemp, and rope items usually. And don't forget the chewing gum wrapper chains we made into everything from door hangings, to bracelets and necklaces. Juicy Fruit was my fave. So this past couple of years, I found myself wearing alot more bracelets, and decided to make some new ones out of the VERY COOL hemp cording Hobby Lobby came up with last July 4th. The pkg had four kinds - full red, full white, full blue and then a twist of red, white, blue together. Another set was the same but there was plain tan hemp in place of full white. Then Tim Holtz came out with some of his own this past CHA Winter '15!! Each kind creates alot of cool touches on crafted items- including braided bracelets!

             Here is a closer detail pic of the three kinds I made recently. I like to add a couple of charms to personalize some, and others just leave plain. 

               THANKS for the kind comments, everyone!!! I keep trying to make sure to look in on everyone else's projects, even if I don't post a comment. I find so much inspiration with all those VERY AWESOME crafts out there! Thanks for stopping in, and please feel welcome to 'steal' any ideas you get from here- it's all about SHARING!! And nothing pleases me more than sharing with so many talented TRULY GIFTED ARTISTS in BlogLand !! Stay safe and...
                                                                      Happy Blogging!