August 26, 2013

One-layer "Decadence"

A recent wedding invitation was the inspiration for this gift set.

One Layer Decadence

These note cards are literally one layer.  

Cardstock blanks were stamped with Penny Black's "Decadence" in Onyx Black Versafine and then masked so a Teal Zeal Memento strip could be sponged on.

Gift Box Set

The decorated "flats" were paired with envelopes and enclosed in an acrylic box tied with a bow accented with an antique button.

Elegantly quick!


Penny Black Stamps: Decadence 40-254
Image Crafts/Tsukineko: Onyx Black VersaFine, Teal Zeal Memento, Sponge Dauber

August 22, 2013

Penny Black & Faber-Castell

This week Penny Black and Faber-Castell are joining together for a special mixed media event.

It was so much fun pairing Penny Black's stamps and Creative Dies with Faber-Castell's coloring mediums and new Mini Mixed Media Journal.

I used two of the journal pages to create this letter-key caddy.

Letter-Key Caddy

Faber-Castell's Gelatos and Big Brush Markers made it easy to add all this fabulous color to Penny Black's new Decadence background and Flutters die cuts.

Close Up

And with six journal pages in the set, you can made three of these letter-key caddies in no time at all.  

Click here for the full instructions and to read more about this special event.  (Psst...there is a giveaway too!)



Penny Black:
Slapstick/Cling Stamp: Decadence 40-254
Creative Dies:  Flutters 51-006
Mix & Match Cardstock: Storm 01-003 (Black)

Mini Mixed Media Journal
Gelatos:  Tangerine, Metallic Mint, Red Cherry
PITT Artist Pen Big Brush:  Orange Glaze 113, Cobalt Green 156, Deep Scarlet Red 219, Black 199

VersaMark Watermark Ink, White Embossing Powder, Colored Snaps, 3 Decorative Hooks (Hardware Store), Colored Snaps, Baby Wipes, Clear 3-D Dimensional Dots, Craft Knife  

August 19, 2013

Speed Sketching

Sometimes to warm up and to get those creative juices flowing, I do some speed sketching.

I let my hand flow with fast, deliberate strokes to capture the essence of a picture and I don't worry about being too exact.  It is all about not thinking and just letting go.

With just a few lines you can capture an image and practice proportion.  

Next I did some fashion poses.

 DSC04859   DSC04861

             DSC04858   DSC04862
Each of these drawings were quickly re-sketched, fine-tuned and had a bit of color added.

Even though I saw many disproportionate lines while working, the speed exercise kept me moving and not worrying about having "the perfect" end result.  It is amazing how much you learn when you don't over think your decisions.  

This was one of the last drawings during my session.  I'd been wanting to try painting a portrait with diluted acrylic paint and decided this was the time to give it a go.  

While all these drawings did not result in a finished project, the exercise reinforces letting art flow.   By removing self-imposed expectations and goals, experimentation becomes less stressful and the lessons learned carry forward into future designs.  

Enjoy your art journeys...


August 15, 2013

Penny Black Wings of Peace & Giveaway

Today I have another make-n-take project that I shared at the Create-N-Connect convention in Las Vegas and giveaway news

This holiday greeting features one of Penny Black's new Creative Dies called Wings of Peace.

Wings of Peace
The negative die cut was placed over metallic gold paper with a few pop dots placed under the dove to give flight to the design.  The sentiment and holly branch are stamps from the transparent sets: Glad Tidings and Peace & Joy.

These two quick variations show how you can use the die cut for different techniques.

Here the white negative piece was "puzzled pieced" with a positive red die cut.

It's all about the glitter in this sample.  Clear packaging tape was placed on the back of the white (negative) die cut and then glitter was sprinkled on the front of the exposed "sticky" portions of the tape.

To give you an idea of how the positive image looks, I mounted it to red cardstock.

Close Up
The definition of the precisely cut image makes a big impact.  Want a little sparkle?  Just add a touch of Stickles.

These designs are all a part of Penny Black's new Colorful Christmas which will be available starting August 16. 

Click "here" to read how you could win a stockingful of these new stamps valued at $100 (retail).  (Hurry...time is running out:  Giveaway closes 8/15/13, 11:59 PM PST.)

Good luck,

Penny Black Stamps: Glad Tidings 30-202, Peace and Joy 30-203
Penny Black Creative Dies: Wings of Peace 51-011
Imagine Crafts/Tsukineko: Onyx Black VersaFine, Olympia Green VersaFine 

August 14, 2013

Clean, Simple & Stylish Holidays

Looking for an equation for making a clean, simple and stylish holiday card?  
The solution is as easy as basic addition.

Deco Christmas Tree (1)

Just take one fabulous Penny Black background (Jolly Chant) and
add one cool Creative Die (Xmas Tree) and it equals a chic card.


Look how fun this die cut is!  
Great for puzzle piecing the components.

introducing banner
You can see more new Colorful Christmas releases 
all this week "here" on the Penny Black Blog.

Holly-jolly smiles,

Penny Black Stamps:  Jolly Chant 40-250
Penny Black Creative Dies:  Xmas Tree 51-012
Imagine Crafts/Tsukineko: Niagara Mist VersaMagic 
Mark Richards: Pearl Stickers

August 13, 2013

Holiday Wish

The wait is finally over and this week Penny Black is revealing their new Colorful Christmas designs.

This is a mini card I designed and taught as a make-n-take at the Create N Connect convention in Las Vegas.

Holiday Wish

Here are all the components ready to go.  The tag and banner were die cut with Penny Black's "Tagged" Creative Dies.


Participants rubbed Phthalo Blue Tint PanPastel with a Sofft Art Sponge over the tag then stamped Christmas Reds & Greens in Teal Zeal Memento.  Duo Embellishing Adhesive was applied to the leaves with a paintbrush and Crystal Art Glitter was sprinkled on top.


The banner was stamped with a sentiment from Yuletide Greetings and wrapped around the tag.  For an adornment, a bird was used from the In A Row die cut.

DSC04848 (2a)

The background was stamped with Decadence in Desert Sand Memento.  All edging on the piece was done with a Memento Marker in the same color.

You can see more new releases all this week on the Penny Black blog "here".  All these delights will be available starting August 16.

introducing banner

Enjoy all the colorful fun,

Penny Black Stamps:  Decadence 40-254, Christmas Reds & Greens 4347K, Yuletide Greetings 30-192
Penny Black Creative Dies: Tagged 51-007, In A Row 51-001
Penny Black Mix & Match Cardstock: Storm 01-001
Imagine Crafts/Tsukineko: Onyx Black VersaFine, Teal Zeal Memento, Desert Sand Memento, Desert Sand Memento Marker
Colorfin: PanPastel (Phthalo Blue Tint), Sofft Art Sponge

August 7, 2013

Colorful Dots

Simply having fun with color....

Beautiful Day

I just love Penny Black's "Dots" die cut with all those various sized holes.  All I did was splash on some color with Ranger Distress Paints and added a small sentiment banner.

Wishing you a beautiful day,

Penny Black Stamps: Nature's Wishes 30-109
Penny Black Creative Dies: Dots 50-009, Tagged 51-007
Penny Black Les Petities: 90-001
Penny Black Mix & Match Cardstock: Storm 01-003
3M Scotch Dimensional Foam Tape
Image Crafts/Tsukineko: Onyx Black VersaFine, Clear Embossing Powder
Other: Gold Thread, Corner Rounder

August 2, 2013

A Bouquet of Good Wishes

"Percolating" colorful flowers with coffee filters.

A Bouquet of Good Wishes

These were inspired by the large peony and hydrangea blooms that I have seen this summer.

Several groupings of coffee filters were scrunched together to make small flowers.  After coloring, the groupings were then assembled together for the larger bloom.


This orange and pink flower was colored with a combination of Dr. Ph. Martin's Hydrus Watercolors and Ranger Distress Paints.


And this blue flower was painted with just the Dr. Ph. Martin's Hydrus Watercolors.  

A Bouquet of Good Wishes

The wired stems were wrapped with twill tape colored with diluted Ranger Distress Paints.  

Tags die-cut from white cardstock using Penny Black's Tagged Creative Dies were first masked in the center with Eclipse Tape.  The flourish was stamped with VersaMark Watermark ink and then covered with an application of Phthalo Blue Tint and  Orange PanPastels.  After the mask was removed, the sentiment was stamped in Onyx Black VersaFine.

Colorful sheer ribbons with antique crystal buttons were attached for adornment.

Thank you for visiting.  Wishing you everlasting color....

Penny Black Stamps:  Gratitude 30-105
Penny Black Creative Dies: Tagged 51-007
Colorfin: Phthalo Blue Tint and Orange PanPastels, Sofft Art Sponges
Dr. Ph. Martin's Hydrus Watercolors
Imagine Crafts/Tsukineko: Onyx Black VersaFine
Judi Kins:  Eclipse Tape
Ranger Distress Paints
Other: Twill, Florist Wire,