Thursday, December 16, 2010

Another Santa

I had so much fun creating the first Santa collage I made another.
There is something I find very inspiring in the process of using vintage laces and trims.  Wondering who they belonged to and what they were used for.  Then to give them new life for others to enjoy. Plus I just love to work with fabrics and trims to see what might happen when they are combined.  Sometimes it is magic.  Other times, well, it needs to sit and be worked out a bit.  That is where I am with my Elves.
I found elves are particular and don't play well with others unless they are in charge!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Santa time!

Santa time is getting closer.  I was inspired to today to create a Santa collage.  Ok, I admit, I had dreams of making many of these and sending them out as Christmas cards.  But as usual, here it is Dec 14th and I just made the first one.  Here is the finished card...or is it a quiltie? I'm not sure what to call it?

The photo is one of my handmade Santa Candy Containers that I photoshopped.  
Here is the original photo and then what it looks like after I did some magic.

I took the photo and printed it out on Inkjet cotton to make it look cool.  I figured I had seen others take photos and make them into fabric collages, how hard could it be?  I could whip out 10 of these in an afternoon and send them to special friends.  HA! It is more difficult than it looks.  Or maybe I am just too picky.

It took quite a while to come up with the perfect combination of fabrics and trims.  I will also add a ribbon at the top so the recipient can hang this in their home.  I hope she likes it!

Tomorrow I will try this again using one of my Elves.  

And also do a few more Santas.  They were fun.
Here is the Santa Candy Container I made.  He holds a antique broken doll from Germany which I repaired and a dog I molded from one of the broken German dog figurines. 

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Chinese Tea

Creating these 9 RODs for my friends has me thinking alot about China.  It was an amazing experience and I feel the need to start sharing bits and pieces with the world.  Or you 5 people who are reading my blog.

Anyway today I decided to treat myself and have some of the Chinese Tea I purchased while over there.
We were in Xi'an and at one of the stops visited a Tea House.  If I remember correctly it was at the TerraCotta warriors.  

A beautiful Chinese girl ( she looked so young) performed a proper Tea ceremony for us.  I'm a tea drinker and it was wonderful for me.  Of course I knew she was only doing this to sell us teas. 

It was interesting to see how they prepare tea in China.  First she poured the tea thru the leaves to wash them and threw the water away.  Then she poured more water thru the strainer and it was tea.  No steeping for 2 + minutes as I usually do.  We were all given little cups to try the teas.  She used a terracotta pot for a few teas to give them a different flavor, which is what she is holding in the photo.

This morning I got to dream I was in China again.  I got out my special tea and realized I had no idea how to prepare it.  I have been drinking loose leaf for years and know certain teas have to be made certain ways or they are no good.  This was a special tea, a green tea, from a foreign land, how was it made?  It is called Dragon well.  I googled it hoping to find something.  And to my surprise I found it is a popular tea, available right here in my own backyard at Teavana!  ARGH!!  Here I thought I had something rare!  
Anyway, at least I know when my stash is gone, I can buy more.  It is GOOD!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Finished China RODs!!

YES!!  I did it!!  I created 9 RODs in 4 days.  It's a miracle!  It was so much fun.  I hope the recipients will love them as much as I do.

In June I was fortunate enough to travel to China with a group of 11 other people for 2 weeks.  It was an amazing adventure.  I think about China every day.  

Monday Dec 6th we are having a reunion as we have not seen each other since.  I  have made these books as a surprise for my friends, hoping they will use them to store their precious memories and treasures they picked up along the way.

The books are small, 6" x 6".  The outside is a red Chinese brocade with green dragons.  Inside is a print with Chinese characters.  I also added a plastic pocket.
I'm a bit nervous giving these as gifts, as I don't know how they will be received.  
Check out my flickr site for more photos.

Thursday, December 2, 2010


Why is it, for me anyway, inspiration always comes late.  Such as if tomorrow were Christmas, I would have a ton of ideas for gifts to make for family and friends.  Why doesn't this hit say back in July,when I have the time and can really create all this stuff rolling around in my head.

Well, the inspiration bug has hit and bit big time.  The background for my story is, in June I was chosen to travel to China with the most amazing group of people.  It was a gift from my college.  While I was there, being the *collector* that I am,  I came home with 4 plastic bags filled with stuff.  Of course it is all written in Chinese, but I still love it all.

I have been thinking about putting it all into a special book, which is why I joined the ROD group, as it seemed perfect for what I wanted to do.  Only I have to much I really didn't know where to start.

Oh?  The project that has driven me over the edge?  We are having a reunion on Monday, and of course 2 days ago I decided that I wanted, no, needed to make a special ROD type book for each person.  There were 12 of us.  And they have to be done by Monday 3pm.  11 books in 5 days.  I can hear you laughing and shaking your head.

Yesterday I was out, running around trying to get everything together.  I worked late into the night, also trying to figure out what I am doing.  Fingers crossed I will get more accomplished today!  Once I finish a page I will show my progress!

Monday, November 29, 2010

New Christmas ROD!

Ah, I had so much fun completing the last Christmas Rod, I had to make another.  I had more ideas I wanted to try on this one.  Seems that happens when I am creating, one idea springs into 10 more.  I have to write them all done so I don't forget.

This ROD was done again with Christmas colors and a poinsettia theme.  Here are a few photos.

The inside cover is a holly design.

This journal has an added pocket on the inside front cover.

Fused paper was used for the trees.  Can you see the teeny vintage star sequins? 

Two places to store cards and tokens from the holidays.
The journal is 9" x 6" and has 2 signatures and a total of 48 pages (both sides)
It is up for adoption in my Etsy shop.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Christmas ROD Journal

Christmas is my favorite time of the year.  This year I wanted to create a special journal to record all those memories we quickly tend to forget.  And here it is.  I never thought the day would come.

Finally.  Finally I have completed my Christmas ROD journal that I was inspired to create from taking Mary Ann Moss's Remains of the day class.

Whew.....this book is a beauty!!
It is 9" x 6" and thick with 2 signatures with 20 pages each!  The cover is created with velvets, cottons, sparkly fabrics and vintage trims.  I love it!

These are a few of the fabric pocket pages.

For more photos please visit my Flickr Site

This journal is available in my Etsy shop.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Angels and Photoshop

I've been playing with Photoshop today.  Trying to see what will happen with my photos by adding textures and backgrounds.  I am following a tutorial I found on DJ Pettitt's  blog.  I used a few of her backgrounds too.  

This is my original photo that was taken in an old graveyard in Boston's North End. 

Here is one effect I added for the background.  I liked the way this looked when I was creating it, but I am not too sure about how it looks here.  This was done with the overlay technique.

This was another effect  and a different background which looks cool.

Here is one of my Santas with an added background.  I love how this came out.  

I hope to try a few more and print them for use in my journals.  

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Christmas ROD #1- Memories

A fabric pocket page
Christmas has always been my favorite time of year.  I remember , back in the day when the decorations wouldn't hit the stores until after Thanksgiving.  I waited for that day, ( which is now referred to as Black Friday) to start my shopping!   I also thought of Christmas starting in July, before it became popular to have Christmas in July.  I have made some of my best Santas in the July heat.

And here were are at the end of October, and I am in the Christmas mood again.  This time I used my spirit to create my first ROD journal.  I had a blast buying new fabrics and using my vintage trims.  This journal is 9" tall x 6" wide.  It has 40 pages, which is 2 signatures of 10 pages each.  This is a very chunky book. The pages are decorated with fabric scraps, paint, old ledger paper, vintage trims, and German Dresden scraps.   There are pockets and places to hold cards, letters, photos, lists or anything you might save from the season.  Plus plenty of room to record memories and stories to remember for next year.  I really love this journal and hope you do too.  Here are a few photos.
This is the front cover
The fabrics are a red Santa toile, red velvet, a sheer white with red and green sparkly dots, along with other fabrics.   A piece of antique lace trims the inside edge.
Here is a top view to show how chunky this book has become.
I love this photo of the antique lace trim.

I have more photos to show, only I can't seem to upload them right now.  Please go check them out on my Flickr account.

I'll add more photos tomorrow to show the pockets and hiding places for memories.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

ROD journals- Christmas theme

Fabric pocket page
Lately I have gotten myself hooked on making RODs.  That is "Remains of the Day" journals, created by Mary Ann Moss  who's blog is Dispatch from LA.  Here are a few photos of pages I have been working on.  I decided to start with a Christmas theme as I have always wanted a Christmas journal to keep track of my thoughts, gifts I bought and received, special cards and the stories we seem to forget from year to year.  This will be perfect!
Another fabric pocket page on the right.  
This journal will be listed in my Etsy shop soon.  Keep watching for a preview of more pages.

North End Boston

Sunday I took a trip to the North End which is the Italian part of town.  The bakeries were packed with lines out the door spilling onto the narrow sidewalks.  I never realized the demand for good Italian pastries.  There was a new flavor cannoli, Lobstertail cream.  I didn't dare to try that one.  As I was walking,  I found this one little store which was my favorite.  The name said it all, as they did just about anything from dog walking, shopping, picking up laundry, fixing bikes, computers, whateva you need!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Welcome to my world

Tonight I decided to take the plunge and start the blog I have been dreaming about for years.  I'm ready.  I want to share my art and how I create with the world.  Please join me as I tell about life, my puppy and my art as I try to create every day.