I’m writing this post so that I will feel accountable for my next sentence. I am NOT going to BUY any new craft supplies in 2017 unless they fit the two specific criteria I have laid out here. First, I am ALLOWED to buy the NECESSITIES if I run out. By necessities, I mean things like paint, glue, artist pens and pencils, gesso, etc… Second, I CAN BUY art supplies if I find them ridiculously CHEAP at thrift shops, yard sales or flea markets. That’s it! I am not going to go to Tuesday Morning, Hobby Lobby, Michael’s or any other store just to browse and see what they have. Browsing usually ends up costing me a lot of money!
So why am I making this bold statement? When I was crafting for Christmas, I found I had so many Christmas items in my stash that I didn’t need to go out any buy anything. I made lots of December Dailies, cards, tags and embellishments without purchasing a thing. The amazing thing is, I still don’t need to buy anything for next year either. I have so many supplies I’m drowning in them. Ditto for Valentine’s Day, Easter, Summer, Fall and you get the idea.
Now here’s where it hurts. I’m going to expose my shame and show you all the stuff I have to craft and make mixed media with. Ready?
Sadly, this is not all. There are some drawers in my studio and other places all over the house that have craft supplies in them. Now you can see why I don’t need to go shopping anytime soon. Everything I have I liked enough to purchase or save, so now it’s time to use it all up. I’m excited about the thought of actually having room to breathe in my studio.
Okay, so it’s confession time. I already did buy something this year. This is what I bought.
My justification is that they were cheap (only $1.00 each) and….
They are filled with pages and pages of these beautiful nature graphics! I can use these for so many projects.
So there you have it. I feel better after this photographic confession and goal for 2017. Hopefully you will be seeing a lot of posts showing the stuff I have been making.
If you feel like you’re suffocating in your supplies, or you want to save some money, craft from your stash and have fun with the supplies you already have on hand. Good Luck!
Every once in a while I get the urge to make a project just using the junk that is
cluttering up on my desk. I decided to make an ATC sized magnet so I could reuse the magnet strip off list pad I had just finished up. I always have varying sizes of cardboard on my desk so that was a no-brainer for the substrate.
I opened a new bottle of gesso and an obscene amount poured out onto my little ATC. I was actually able to gesso 2 – 8 x 10 canvas boards, 2 – 5 x 5 stretched canvases, 1 – 6 x 8 canvas board and my ATC with that huge puddle!
Next, I painted on some cream and brown acrylic paints to give it a vintage feel.
This very blurry picture shows some eggs I cut from some scrapbook paper. I inked the edges with distress ink before decoupaging them onto the card.
Here is the “finished ATC”. It’s really simple, but it gives me that old field guide feeling.
I painted the back of the card the same color blue I spattered on the eggs and attached the magnet strip from the used up note pad.
I like how the ATC magnet came out, but I just needed to add one more touch to make me love it.
Yep, you guessed it. I added glitter to the butterfly’s wings. NOW it’s done and I do love it! I hope you like it too and that it inspires you to make your own little work of art with things that are already on your desk!
Friday I went to the post office and found our mail box stuffed, as I hadn’t been for a couple of days. I was expecting a small package, which was there, but there was also an unexpected package. After prying all the letters and packages out of our mail box I saw that the unexpected package was from my dear and crafty friend Camilla. It was a total surprise as we were not doing a craft swap. I was so excited to get home and see what she sent me.
The mailing box had really cute French themed duct tape on it, however, it was hard to get into and it got a little too mangled for me to show you. This is what I pulled out of the box.
Oooh, what could it be?
Look at this beautiful altered spool Camilla made for me. Everything about it is so well done and pretty. And I just LOVE rosettes! Look at all the detail she put into it, down to the stick pin in the front. Thank you so much my crafty friend. I will “scrap” you back when you least expect it!!!
This week I worked on a little Valentine’s Day project. These little treat boxes will be filled with goodies and given to some of my friends.
I started out with these plain white pillow boxes I had in my stash forever.
I stamped them randomly with an old style script stamp and black ink.
I broke out my really big bag of Valentine’s Day craft supplies.
I die cut some shapes and pulled out some other elements to make embellishments for the treat boxes.
After putting the paper parts of the embellishments together I added some bling.
Next I added some random strips of washi tape to the boxes.
I stamped these little tags with “how sweet” on one side and the lips on the other side.
Here is a sample of one of the finished treat boxes. I did not put them all together as I don’t have the treats to put in them yet. When they are all filled I will try to remember to take a picture and post it.
This was a simple and fun project to do. You can do the same thing with plain white bags or other small containers if you don’t have pillow boxes.
I hope the recipients will enjoy them!
Christmas comes on December 25th every year. So why am I always so late in getting my Christmas cards made and mailed every year? I had two weeks between my two winter shows to decorate the house and make my cards. So what went wrong?
This years excuse had to do with the fact that I made way too few Junk Journals and December Dailies for my shows. You see, I had made them thinking I would mainly sell them at the Expo show. I decided to bring them to the Vintage Home Market first figuring I might sell one or two. That’s where my plan started going wrong. I sold almost all of them at the first show. Now my two weeks for home decorating and card making were absolutely used up making more junk journals and December Dailies. So the cards and decorating had to wait until after the Expo show.
Last year I made elaborate cards, each one very different from the others. Some even had machine stitching on them and of course they went out late because they took so long to make. So this year I decided to scale back on my card making ambitions.
Here are the basic supplies I used.
I used some colorful striped boxed cards, a package of journaling cards and some stickers all from Hobby Lobby. I also used some K & Company bird embellishments, baker’s twine from Target and some glittered stocking table scatter from The Dollar Tree. Each card also has some Christmas themed background paper pieces that were left over from other projects. I also used some glittered snowflakes and a few other embellishments I had lying around.
So even though these cards aren’t as fancy as last year’s cards, I like them just as much and they were way more fun to make! So to my friends and family who usually get cards from me, yours is on its way to you. And keeping with my Christmas tradition, it will be late again this year!
A lot of people ask me where I find such cute Christmas graphics for my December Dailies. I tell them, “Anywhere I can”. I don’t say that to be evasive or cryptic, I say it because it’s the truth. When you work on December Dailies and junk journals, you learn to look at the things that pass through your hands carefully. You want great graphics for your journals, however, most people don’t really even look at the papers that pass through their hands.
Here are a few cute Christmas graphics that may make it into my December Daily this year and the place where I found them. Hopefully this will give you some ideas for collecting great graphics for whatever project you are working on.
These are just a few examples of what types of graphics are good to use for journals and where you can find them. But don’t forget to look at napkins, coasters, food bags, labels, newspapers, magazines, flyers, food boxes and shopping bags. Great graphics are all around, you just have to slow down and look for them.
I hope you take your time this Christmas to see all the wonderful images marketing professionals put out there for us to enjoy!
I have been working a lot lately on making junk journals and December Daily journals to sell at shows this fall. As a change of pace, however, I was given a commission to make eight decorated mini composition books by a young lady who is moving to Japan as an English teacher. She wanted the little books as small token gifts to give some of the people she will be working with.
She asked me to make them slightly grungy but with an American tone. I used some scrap-book papers from Momenta and Tim Holtz and embellishments from Tim Holtz. I also added some fun vintage graphics I had in my stash.
Here are the eight little books I came up with.
I think they turned out really cute and I hope her Japanese co-workers do too!
With Kindles, computers, tablets, IPhones, etc., good old paper books are getting the big heave-ho in many homes. Thrift shops are becoming so flooded with books that many are starting to give them away for free while others charge only 25-50 cents a piece. I for one still love to read actual paper books and it breaks my heart to see them devalued in society today.
As many of you know, I am an avid thrift shop junkie and yes, I always look at the books. And even though I am not interested in reading most of what I find, there are other criteria that will get them into my shopping basket. Do they have nice and interesting hard covers? Do they have fun vintage graphics? Are they vintage children’s books, especially Little Golden Books? Are they old accounting ledgers or logs of some sort?
Here are some (and I emphasize some) of the books I have purchased recently. Notice they don’t fit on the bookshelf so they are piled up on the floor!
So what do I do with all these old books? First of all, I deconstruct them and separate the pages from the covers. Then I pull out all kinds of other vintage ephemera I have such as flash cards, stationary, envelopes, playing cards, graph paper, scrapbook papers and the list goes on.
Next I sort the papers and ephemera into equal piles according to the number of book covers I have.
Lastly I bind the books together to make sweet vintage junk journals. Usually I bind them with binder rings so there is lots of room for the new owner to add their own treasures. I tie some ribbon on the book rings and each is given a charm to dangle from the top ring.
These junk journals function just as the others I have made. You can glue, staple, tape and clip your ticket stubs, cute packaging tags, greeting cards and all sorts of other collected ephemera onto the pages. This is a really fun way to keep and display all those little bits of paper and ephemera that you have collected and don’t know what to do with.
These journals will be packed up for some shows Mossy Cottage will be selling at this coming fall. I have many more books to give a new life to and plan of rescuing as many as I can in the months to come!
Alright so I am moving right along with my Journaling by 5s sessions which was created by Shannon Green. This is the fourth 15-minute session and I had to add my focal graphics and words. To me this was the step I really dreaded the most because this is the area I tend to over-think.
I already have files of collage graphics and a box of words and sentences, however, I did cut some more out of some old magazines just in case.
So I got my glue stick, images, words, journal and timer ready.
I just had one preconceived idea which was to put light graphics on dark pages and dark graphics on light pages. The words and text would be whatever I grabbed. With only 15 minutes and twenty pages there really isn’t any time to think.
This step was actually the easiest for me and I did finish in the time allowed. I’m okay with the results so far even if a lot of it doesn’t make sense yet. I still have a doodling session and some “free play” time to tie everything together. Stay tuned, I may even show you how the heinous page is coming along!