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December 3, 2014

Precious Holiday House Decorations

Nothing like a nice warm home and some Christmas decorations for the holidays. I adore the new Glitter House Template Collage Sheet from Alpha Stamps. It's part of the December 3D Ornament Kit.  I can make as many cute little houses as I like and I even found a way to make a two story house. Imagine how many themes you could use this for!

And the houses even light up!

Don't let the lights intimidate you! Everything is already made, you just have to flip the switch on or attach a battery. The left house is lit using a Mini LED Light with Switch and I used the Lamp Post with Light on the right house. I used one lamp post for the front porch light and then used a second one to light the inside of the house. I simple made a hole in the top of my box and fed the light post through. The box conceals the batteries and the wires. I love the way the light shines through the "glass" that was easy to create. I'll show you below.....

Looking at this pic, I feel like I am back in Chester, England on a cold night, breathing in all of the history and beauty. If only I could have this in a life sized version!  I used the wood designed paper from the Christmas Collage 6x6 Paper Pad to create "wood" strips that I placed in a tudor pattern.  

The chimney smoke was created by using  some Crinkle Wire (Repro Bouillon)* stretched and wrapped around a small wooden dowl to make it a larger curl. Twist a few together on the bottom end and pop it on in for a pretty and non polluting smoke.

It was really easy to create a two story house to go along with my one level house. All I did was trace my stencil, then lined up the bottom left of the stencil along with the top left of the first trace.

Then I just cut the house out and assembled it the same way as the one level house. Be sure to scour your paper to make good folding lines. You want to make your edges as smooth and crisp as possible to keep the house sturdy. 

I also like to make my houses extra sturdy so not only did I attach the original stencil to my designed paper (after scouring), I also attached it to a manilla folder. The fold lines up perfectly with the extra bit of my house and again, just make sure to really scour the paper with each layer for a good for a clean, crisp fold.

After putting my house together and creasing it to assemble, I lay it out flat and decorate. I decided where I wanted to attach my windows, traced around my windows and cut just within the line so that there was an area to allow the window to adhere to the paper.

To create my transparent windows, I used a ATC Size Glassine Envelopes*

I attached small pieces of the envelope over the windows with a glue stick. Then, I colored the windows with ink and paint. To create stained glass, just use three or four colors like I did for the smaller house.

I hope you feel inspired to make some of these adorable houses. Each year, my favorite decorations that I unpack are all those that were made by hand for generations. Sewn ornaments my mother made, ornaments made by my former students, the ones I have created, and of course my favorite are those made by my children. They are at an age where creating this precious house is simple and they will look wonderful on my mantle and Christmas tree. Have a wonderful Holiday, a Merry Christmas, and as always, thanks for stopping by! 

Supplies Used:

November 18, 2014

Everyone Enjoys A Good Cigar

Men and women alike visit humidors and love to relax with a nice cigar. Well, some do but not me. But I needed an intro! Love this months Cigar Box kit from Alpha Stamps!

I created both a masculine and a feminie mini cigar box using the new masonite Tiny Cigar Box. It was actually easy to personalize and get creative with.

Inside you will find some "cigar themed" ATCs using these richly colored and beautifully designed images from both the old and the new collage sheets at Alpha Stamps

For the inside of both boxes, I used distress paints, liquid pearls, alcohol inks and metal patinas to create a marble type look. These items can all be found under the "Paints, Pens, Colorants" section at Alpha Stamps. I have a bit of a tutorial on how I did it below. 

The masculine box has some cool vintage finds on it like the topper wooden cog and a Journalism medal from long ago. I made the bottom by attaching two oil lids together. 

For the "feminine" box I used lots of frilly lace and roses. 

Originally, I had started to use the mini cigar box model from the collage sheet Las Rosas Mini Cigar Boxes Collage Sheet. But I also knew I was using the masonite Tiny Cigar Box so I decided to cover the boxes myself with these new Cigar Box Secrets Line of papers. I love the colors and how the designs all go so well with one another. 

I used my previously cut out cigar box model and after tracing and cutting, scored the paper to make it easier to fold around the masonite box. 

I added distress paints, liquid pearls, alcohol inks and metal patinas as the beginning of my marbled effect.

I then dragged a toothpick through the inks to blend it along some and make it look more natural.

I heated all of the colors together with a heat gun. I literally cooked it until it bubbled, cracked and popped. Then it was time to put my box all together. 

As you can see above, I placed the box so that the leveled edges would be on the top. Next, I glued the paper to the box. 

I always smear the glue smooth with a finger so that the paper adheres more smoothy and doesn't contain lumps.

As you may notice, all of my paper edges throughout all of my work is "aged" with brown ink. I don't like my papers to have a white edge. They don't look as vintage then which is what I am all about. 

Before I attached my ribbon, I used the Cigar Box Secrets Mini Clear Stamp Set to add some extra richness with the Lumiere Metallic Acrylic Paint in Metallic Gold and Old Brass.

I really enjoyed this project and hope that it has been pleasing to your eye. Hopefully I have inspired you to try something new and get creative. Thanks for stopping by and come back soon! xoxo

Supplies Used:

November 2, 2014

Fabulous French Finds

After all of the years I have spent finding vintage french treasures, I still don't have enough. Aren't these fabulous! They are medical/nursing glass flasks. I love the shape and imperfections in the glass. I have them in my art studio window so I can see the sky behind them, no matter what kind of day. Have you found any good treasures lately?

October 28, 2014

Art for Halloween.... My Favorite

My favorite swap theme for art work is without a doubt

Below are my Halloween tags for the AMAZING Character Construction Tag Swap! Be careful, she does bite!

Here is an ATC swap with the facebook group The Enchanted Imaginarium. I really LOVE this group and have already made some dear friends!

And for the Sweet and Sinister Swap, some frightfully fun and tasty treats! I love creating altered cigar boxes of any kind, so this was the perfect chance to get my "fix" in along with some shopping. Not that I would purchase things for myself when searching for swap goodies. Never!

Hope you all have a safe and fun Halloween! BOO