august artful bag challenge atc swap

It's time for another Artful Bag Challenge ATC swap. I have a list of swappers so far (see right side bar). There is still plenty of time to sign up so just email me by Aug 4 and I will add your name to the list. I will post the partners on the 5th.

Remember your ATC should have a bag theme. How you interpret it is completely up to you. Please make sure you allow enough time for your card to reach your partner by the 25th. You can share your ATCs on your blog and on our Artful Bag Challenge Flickr page on that day.

Please also remember that if you sign up to swap you must follow through and send an ATC to your partner. Someone is looking forward to your lovely piece of art. If something comes up please contact your partner and let them know.

OK now I want to share the wonderful ATC I received from my swap partner Ana for our first swap last April. Ana lives in Brazil and owns the blog Scrap da Ana.  She creates beautiful paper art among other things and I first saw her work last year during the Paper Dress challenge.

Ana created a stamped fabric ATC on a vintage air mail envelope. She made it into a little bag with colorful beaded stems tucked inside.

This is the back.

Ana also sent me sheets of vintage pages and ephemera, air mail envelopes and a sweet little bag made in her country. I love the bright cheery colors!

And all of it came in this wonderful box she decorated. It was stuffed with ribbons, laces, doilies and all sorts of  colorful trim. It was so amazing and incredibly thoughtful and generous of her.

I have been having so much fun using these goodies in my creations. Thank you so much Ana for sharing your art and gifts.

Now whether you share a few extras with your partner is completely up to you. There is no requirement to send anything more than your ATC. Many artists love to share supplies and gifts so that again is completely up to you. My swap partner was extraordinarily generous and I just wanted to share her beautiful gifts here. 

For more details about the Artful Bag Challenge please click on the button on the right sidebar. And thank you to everyone that played along for the July theme.

Hope you had a great weekend.

p.s. Happy Birthday today to Harry Potter and JK Rowling!!
Did I tell you we have seen the movie 3 times?!

faerie shoe and wand swap

Hello and good Thursday afternoon! Hope you're enjoying a lazy summer day. I want to share the wonderful faerie slipper I received from Lorraine, from Over the Rainebeau for the Bliss Angels Faerie Shoe Swap.

The slipper itself is just adorable, with beautiful details and a tiny sweet faerie. But Lorraine also included a lovely card and little faerie treats!

And she also attached a length of tulle ribbon so I can hang it in a special place. Thank you so much Lorraine. I love it!

I also want to share the wand I received from Lynn, from Ruby Rabbit Studios for the Bliss Angels Spring Wand Swap in April. Somehow I forgot to post it and the shoe made me remember.

Lynn created this adorable woodland wand for me!

Topped with a birdhouse and a cute birdie peeking out. The roof is made from a pine cone and Lynn said she attached each 'shingle' individually! I love that the handle is an actual branch.

Here is another side of the birdhouse showing a clay tile with a dragonfly design.

Luna had her eye on my wand right away so I made sure to put it in a safe place where she couldn't get her little kitty paws on that birdie. Thank you so much again Lynn!

august atc swap, hp movie

Thank you everyone for your comments on my last post about my Blogger woes. I really appreciate all your suggestions and glad to hear I'm not the only one having posting issues. I think I'll keep using Chrome for now even if my text looks weird to me. At least I know it looks OK to you guys so that works for me.

Next month we are doing the second round of our ATC swap for the Artful Bag Challenge. A few people have already signed up so if you're interested in doing the swap please send me an email and let me know. I'll post the pairings on August 5.

It looks like Harry Potter DH2 is breaking all sorts of box office records. We have seen it twice and it is truly amazing. My son and I did the 2 day movie marathon last week which ended with the midnight opening of the new film. We even got fun freebies for doing the marathon (special Harry 3D glasses, hat, poster). It was so great to see all the movies on the big screen again and seeing them all back to back really made me appreciate the journey those young actors went on.

I have to say that seeing it on opening night wasn't exactly the experience I had expected. We saw it in 3D and it was amazing of course, but I think seeing it on opening night and in 3D was just a little too distracting for me. We had a great time in the theater and there was a fun party atmosphere the whole time, but I had a hard time fully immersing myself in the story. I really thought I would be in tears most of the time but I was surprised to find I never used any of the tissues I stuffed in my purse.

Even my son said he was surprised he didn't feel as sad as he thought he would be. So we spent the drive home discussing why we felt this way and came to the conclusion that although we had a great time at the marathon, all the excitement proved to be a little too distracting. I mean there was even someone in the audience who was sobbing so hard that people started giggling!

So we decided we had to go and see it again right away, which we did. This time not in 3D and during a less crowded show. Finally I was able to get into it and fully appreciate each scene and of course by the end I had gone through all my tissues. I also hope Alan Rickman gets recognized for his performance because he was absolutely brilliant.

What's next? My son wants to see the movie in D-Box. That's when you get to sit in a motion chair that moves along with the scenes in the film. A few theaters are showing DH2 with the D-Box experience (also in 3D). Now I get motion sickness at the drop of a hat, but I'm also curious to see what it's like. So I'll probably end up taking a bunch of ginger pills....which is suppose to work for motion sickness....and bring along a little brown bag just in case, lol.

Hope you're having a nice weekend!

p.s. We went to our Borders store yesterday and it made me so sad to see everything going away. I can't believe they're closing. I have wonderful memories of going to the Harry Potter midnight book releases and parties there with my little guy. It was really too much to see it all being cleared out :(

do i see what you see?

Each time I go on Blogger I just become more and more frustrated. Posting has been a challenge, particularly if I have lots of pictures to post.....the WBC post took a LOT of patience. I haven't seen my followers gadget in ages and just the other day I realized not all the Blogger fonts show up the same way on different browsers.

I've been using IE7 for ages. I can't upgrade to 8 because it crashes my poor old computer. Blogger did a systems upgrade recently and I think IE7 doesn't support a lot of it which is why my followers gadget suddenly went missing.

So I downloaded Google Chrome and voila....I see my followers when I use Chrome! But the font I use for my blog looks really weird and pixelated. This totally baffles me. Doesn't Google own Blogger? Why would their browser not support web fonts they offer on their blogger site?

Maybe it's just me and this old laptop of mine. Any of you have similar woes? Can you tell me if the font I use looks normal or is it weird and blurry (that's what it looks like to me in Chrome). And are you able to load multiple images in Blogger? I used to up until last week. Now I can load one picture and I have to exit out of the editor each time I need to load the next one. Yes. The WBC post nearly made me want to give up blogging all least until I can upgrade either my system or my computer.

Anyway, I was also going to add more about the Artful Bag Challenge ATC swap and also stuff about the HP movie but I'll save it for the next post. So really quickly...

I already have a few sign ups for next month's ATC swap theme and if you're interested in swapping please email me soon.

Also the Harry Potter movie was amazing of course and we have already seen it twice! I'll tell you more next time.

Those are older pictures of Luna up there, when she was still a kitten. I just love them and it's exactly how I feel about this Blogger thing, lol. Be back soon.

fairy shoe

Did you have a great weekend? The WBC party is still on. There are lots of wonderful creative spaces to see and be inspired by. If you're here for WBC you can click on the button at the top of the right sidebar or scroll down to the previous post.

My shoe for the Fairy Shoe Swap at Bliss Angels is on it's way to my swap partner so I thought I would post the rest of the pictures.

I used a template from Artful Affirmations and made my shoe from pretty scrapbook paper. Then I cut out flowers from a paper napkin and collaged it on. I changed it a bit by curling the tip and turning it up slightly.

Embellished with a piece of vintage lace, a ruffle I made from old dress pattern paper, Prima paper flowers and a bit of paint, distress ink and glitter.

I imagined a fairy might have left this shoe in the woods after dancing the night away at a Midsummer ball.

This 1689 quote by John Selden was perfect for it.

I had lots of fun making my wee little shoe and I hope my swap partner Lorraine likes it too.

Thank you again to Wendy for another great fairy swap.

where bloggers create 2011

Welcome to my creative space. This is my second year participating in Where Bloggers Create, hosted by Karen Valentine at My Desert Cottage.

My studio is still in the same spot. Mainly in my dinning room but as my art grew, so did all my stuff. So I branched out just a little. This room is now used mainly for storage. The hutch holds everything from my art supplies to all our general office stuff.

I used to work at this table but I got tired of always having to clean up my projects when it was time to eat. And since I like to work standing up most of the time, it was really starting to bother my back. I love my mid-century modern dinning set but the table is just a little too low.

My hutch holds some of the many gifts I have received from dear friends I met through blogging, like the magical Garden Spells chair, Petunia art doll and birthday collage from Marfi.

I also keep my favorite magazines here.

This iron stand is to the left of the hutch. It was kiwi green and had become too rusty after being in the garden a few years, so I gave it a coat of vintage white and brought it in.

I have learned a lot from my collection of art books. I also started the Artful Bag Challenge this year so I can indulge my love for embellishing old bags like this one.

For storage I like to use thrift store finds and mini wooden drawers and cabinets.

I also like to use glass jars to store ribbons, trim and baubles.

This jewelry organizer holds paper flowers, trim and other embellishments. It hangs behind the stand when not in use.

This is the small table to the right of the hutch. The craft cabinet is another favorite thrift store find. It was a very heavy wooden cassette tape holder I got for about $4.

After I took all the pictures for this post I decided to play with it some more and here is how the case ended up. You can read more about the inspiration for this project here.

To the right of the table is a fabric divider screen I made when I used to do craft shows.

I needed something to break up the long wall of tables and stands to keep things from looking too busy. It also helped to anchor my favorite chair so it didn't get lost visually.

The screen and chair divide the space between the dining room and the living room, which is to the right of my work table. This was just a small empty walk through space but I got the idea to set up a work table right by the window. I love being able to adjust the shutters and use all that great natural lighting.


 And my old chair is a perfect place for me to relax and think about new projects...when it isn't occupied by my marmalade tabby, Luna.

A very skinny wall next to the kitchen is another spot I coveted for my creative space. This wall and the kitchen are to the left of the dinning table. You can see part of the tea cart in the previous picture. The wooden shelf was another thrift store treasure.

I use it to display artwork, projects and to create vignettes for blog parties or just for fun. The small 'retablo' art to the right of the shelf was made by my cousin who is also a mixed media artist 

My old tea cart is right below the shelf. Almost everything here is a thrift store find. A wire record album holder and wooden plate rack hold my files and decorative papers. The wire candelabra is a favorite find from last Fall.

And this retro typewriter was a great buy at $14 and a birthday present to myself this year.

Another view of my work table and chair. Under the table is a small rolling cart and on top of the cart is a great organizer that was, yup, another thrift store treasure.

My work table is not very big so I make the most of it by using holders and organizers that stack or spin. To make it a comfortable height to work at when I'm standing, I set the table on bed risers.

Cigar boxes are also great for storage.

I used to wish I had a separate room to turn into a 'real' studio, where I would be able to shut the door and not worry about my stuff spilling onto the rest of the house.

But I learned to love having my art space out in the open. It may be more of a challenge that requires me to be extra creative about where to put everything, but that's also the best part of it. And  I really love it when someone comes over and says 'Oh you're an artist!'

Thank you for stopping by to visit and thank you to Karen from My Desert Cottage for hosting again. There are lots of amazing and creative spaces to see so make sure to go there for the list of participants.

p.s. My studio assistant Luna wasn't available during this year's photo shoot. She was napping in a different room and I had to get the pictures done while the light was nice. I also didn't get to include my laptop because my son was using it. So here is a photo from last year's WBC. You can see how my space looked then.

Have a lovely creative day!