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October 10, 2014

What's that peaking in my window?

I don't like open curtains at night when I'm on the first floor. It creeps me out! You never know when you might see some wicked goblins looking in thinking who knows what! Do they want candy, do they want to eat my hedgehog, children or me? 

That's right, this months theme for the Alpha Stamps kit of creativity is "Goblins". Be afarid, be VERY afraid!

This is one of my favorite creating months and I love the wicked designs that Alpha Stamps carries in the form of card stock, clear sticker sheet, transparancy and my favorite digital downloads because I can do so much more over and over again. Be sure to check out the Halloween section because they have every theme you can imagine and then some by creative artists like Teri Calia of Catnip Designs, Laura Caron of Artfully Musing and SO many more! 

Now go grab your own goblin kit, and shut your curtains for goodness sake! 

September 25, 2014

Traveling Long Ago

I so enjoy doing these Character Construction tag swaps with Cathy Arnold. Recently we did a Travel themed tag swap and I love how mine turned out. It's probably because it let my creative side combine with one of my favorite treasures.

A couple of years ago I found this wonderful travel journal from 1920. It belonged to a girl named Elizabeth Jackson and within its covers she shared her voyage on the S.S. Saint Paul. I used her as my inspiration for my tag and even made her a little suitcase from an old wallet I had.

The back of my tag contains a copy of one of the many pages of "Funnels & House Flags of Principal Atlantic Lines". What a different time that was. I think of what they wore and the way life was at that time. She traveled all around France, Italy, Switzerland and more. The journal contained letters, notes, information about being on a ship like ship signals, sea depths, sound signals and even how to play Shuffleboard. She also had a large map of the world which was very interesting because countries and places have changed since her time.

The really cool thing is that before I found this travel journal, I had found another one of her journals from 1923. It had her address written inside and I was actually able to pull up her address on Google maps and see the house she lived in. It contained bits of this and that, little notes, cards and even a letter from the Dean of her college.

One of my favorite treasure finds is that of something that was once treasured by someone else, long ago, and tells a small story about them. Their perception and way of life and how different things were fasinate me. Thank you Elizabeth for letting your journals end up in my hands and for sharing your life with me. I will treasure them always and hope that you are at Peace.

Be sure to visit the Character Construction Tag Swap board on Pinterest!!

September 14, 2014

Cirque at Night

Have you ever wondered what happens under the Big Top, after the show is over and the guests are gone? Surely all of those performers kick back and have some fun, right? Well here's a little book that tells the story, of what happens to the Cirque at Night. Illustrated by Catherine Moore and her beautiful stamps from the Cirque Collection at Character Constructions.

After the tickets have been torn, the popcorn and cotton candy eaten, the elephants sway, and the performers amaze, is it time for all to lay their heads down under the beautiful moon? Of course not! It is time for the "Star Dust Ball" to begin. And what a beautiful sight and marvelous time it is!

The ringmaster grabs his girl, and the dancing begins under the stars. Others dance or join together to try new tricks and relax with a show performed just for the "family" that is able to call the Big Top home, no matter where it stands.

And what is that we see by the beauty who juggles the stars themselves? More performers, ready to relax and put a smile on their own Big Top familie's faces. Fun for all till the moon says goodnight and the sun rises again.

The sheer polka dot fabric was one of my Grandmother's scarfs. I decided to use some of them to become something new and beautiful, instead of sitting in a box for no one to see. And it is from this same side of my family that my relation to the North family comes, as in John Ringling North. Seems fitting to my personality that I am related to someone involved with a circus. Don't you think, lol?

Dedicated to my Grand-ma Betty who I miss so very much and all of my North Family. God bless and RIP in that Big Top in the sky!

September 5, 2014

The Mourning of Poe's Raven

It's weird, the way my creative brain works sometimes. I have become obsessed with Victorian Mourning practices. Most think it is very morbid, but why? It's a loved one who has passed, and your heart hurts. Now granted, mourning the dead and wearing black clothing for two years is a little too much for me. But the rememberance, I feel, is a way to embrace that loved one and keep them close to you. But obviously it needs to be done in a healthy way. 

When my cat suddenly died last year, I felt much better leaving him there on my studio floor looking as if he were asleep. I didn't want to put him outside right away. I was crushed, and the fact I could look over at him, pet his fur, and cry made me feel comforted. The Victorians weren't morbid. They comforted their sad hearts. 

So when I saw that Alpha Stamps was going to carry these wonderful Black Chipboard Ravens, my obsession with these black beauties started to fly wildly through my artistic mind. I would LOVE to do a Raven rescue or a Crow for that matter. Beautiful birds. 

When you have a chipboard Raven, and then Edgar is thrown into the mix, of course you are going to combine the two. All of my Victorian Mourning braided hair treasures then made their way into the mix. Thus, the Raven, dressed in black with it's black floral broach and a lock of Poe's hair. Actually it is mine from my last haircut. I wanted to make something and guess this is one of the places it was supposed to go.

You can see below why I have hair on the brain. I recently put my collectioun of Victorian mourning broaches and buttons in the glass topped box. Inside there are death announcements, pictures and more.

Did you know that there are coffins with viewing windows built in? I didn't either but saw one once and stored it away in my mind for later use. There was a time that safety coffins had a window and a bell attached so those who had not really passed, could ring for help. "The American horror writer, Edgar Allen Poe, also seemed unnaturally preoccupied by thoughts of being buried alive as the subject appears with some frequency in his own writings"

RIP Edgar A. Poe and have fun with the Ravens! 

Supply List:

August 15, 2014

Little Red & The Armoire

Once there was a sweet little girl who was skipping through the woods to visit her grandmother....

That is what this months theme is at Alpha Stamps, Little Red Riding Hood. And as you can see, I had to give it a bit of a weird Rhonda twist.

I used my Big Shot Cutting Machine and the "Treat Bag Cover, Armoire" Die Cut from Sizzix to make a place for Little Red to hide. Question, does Little Red Riding Hood have a name? I ran this XL die through several times with different patterns of paper, then combined these two to make it come to three-dimentional life.

Mean old wolf! I'm gonna laugh when you fall off of that armoire onto your tail. And who do you think you are, scratching up Grandma's walls like that?

I used an old cigar box to create this scene, and placed the lid underneath to make a floor to hold it steady. Gave me a larger area to play on even though I fear that other wolf is going to try and eat that poor bird.

OK, that is not a normal tree from the woods. That tree is PoSseSsEd or something. I hope Red never tries to climb up it. She might loose her hood.

Supplies Used:

August 5, 2014

The Freak Show Has Made It To Town

Well, I guess it is no surprise that I would turn this Alpha Stamps Circus Theme into a Freak Show. I guess I am preoccupied with the upcoming season of American Horror Story, lol. 

The 4 Legged Beauty is such a talented gal! She can actually dance with 2 left feet!

Dragon Girl looks so kind, but don't let her sweet face fool you. She can swoop down on you while flying with her dragon wings, and can also rip your hair out with her hands if you upset her or mess with her Clown family. But give her a marshmallow to toast and she will be your best friend forever, even though she can't breath fire.

And finally, there's the World's Smallest Drama Queen! She loves to dance and sing for her Freak Show family. She might be small, but she has got some strong little lungs on her. If she doesn't get her way she can scream louder then the biggest screech owl and will chew at your legs like a baby alligator. She's kind of in charge for that very reason.

The most important thing to remember.... just because they are in a Freak Show, doesn't mean they are any less then you. The true judgment of a person is what comes from their heart, and these unique wonders have the biggest and most loving hearts for they are the true norm and we are the freaks. 

Supplies Used:
Small Paper Theatre Boxes
Chipboard Boxes - Small Rectangle
Small Square Chipboard Shadow Boxes
Paper Theatre Cirque Collage Sheet
Tall Paper Theatre and Curtain Collage Sheet
Circus Performers #1 Collage Sheet
Circus Performers #2 Collage Sheet
Clowns #1 Collage Sheet
Clowns #2 Collage Sheet
Circus Parade Collage Sheet
Tiny Circus Collage Sheet
Wood Theatre Frame Collage Sheet
Gold Sweeper Fringe
Gold Metallic Gimp
Narrow Gold Metallic Braid
Tiny Gold Fringe
1/8 Inch Red Railroad Stripe Ribbon
White Crushed Silky Ribbon
Tiny Star Sequins
Tim Holtz Letterpress Wood Letters
VersaCraft Chalk Pigment Pad - Poppy Red
Anthem Capital 12x12 Paper
Anthem Nation 12x12 Paper
Cirque Paper Theatre Kit

July 12, 2014

So Many Collections - Maybe Too Many Collections

Some might think that I have too many collections, like my husband. But I don't think there is such a thing as too many collections. Granted, I have some morbid collections like my Victorian Mourning Jewelry and casket plaques. But I also have "normal" collections like my Parisian treasures and Rosaries. When I see an old Rosary, it is like pushing a pause button. Everything stops for a moment and I notice the little details and wonder who used it to pray and what their life was like at that time. When you put several Rosaries together, it is like a piece of art work. And I know from experience just how powerful it can be to pray the Rosary.

What are some things that you like to collect?