Sunday, December 17, 2017

Into the UFO Pile


If you saw this photo on my Instagram feed, you know that my UFO pile has grown to the size where it needed to be dealt with. UFO = UnFinished Objects - a term I borrowed from my late friend Leslie.

I think I make more UFOs than I make cards, but there's a good reason for this. Well, a few good reasons.

The first reason is that I practice a lot. The UFO turned card you'll see today is from a practice session. I was just playing with a new set of watercolors at a retreat. Here's where I posted about that on Instagram when it was in progress in April. As I said on that photo - it took me 11 hours to paint that thing because I was talking, laughing, looking at what everyone else was doing. Then it came home with me and sat in the UFO pile for 8 months. But a few weeks ago I decided to organize the UFO pile into the following sub-piles: Finished cardfronts that just needed to go onto cards, elements, like die cuts, Gel Press pieces, etc, and things that needed a sentiment or other finishing to become a card. Oh and garbage, "why did I save this", which went right in the trash.

The second reason I have a lot of UFOs is I experiment a lot - test different mediums or techniques before attempting to make a full card or a video. I'll never blog anything that isn't repeatable, so I do a lot of this.

Finally - I teach a lot of classes and so I have a lot of partially finished things that were kitted for classes. Staring at me from the pile right now are some cute fussy cut pumpkins that are a wee bit late for fall.

Since this one was on top - it's today's card! Might be a bright and happy break for those of you suffering from that terrible condition known as "winter" outside of Central Texas.

Simon Says Stamp Suzy's IN FULL BLOOM...
[ SSS ]
Mijello Mission Gold Watercolors
[ BLIC ]
MISTI Stamping Tool
[ MSW | SBC | ELH | SSS ]
Absorber - Synthetic Cleaning Cloth
[ AMZUS ]
Whisper White Cardstock - Thick
[ SUP ]
Fabriano Extra White Cold Press...
[ BLIC ]
Rotatrim Professional Series Cutter -...
[ BLIC ]
05816-1008 - Da Vinci Cosmotop Spin...
[ BLIC ]
Mudder 10 Pack White Buffer Sanding...
[ AMZUS ]
Xyron ADHESIVE ERASER 23675
[ SSS | ART | AMZUS ]
Bone Folder by Stampin' Up!
[ SUP ]
Multipurpose Liquid Glue by Stampin' Up!
[ SUP ]


I just can't get enough of Suzy's watercolor cards even if it does take me 8 months to turn it into a card. I love that the images are big enough that they don't need a sentiment once they're painted.

I just look at this and remember practicing, surrounded by happy crafters. The UFO pile is also full of happy memories.

To all of you who commented about your favorite flower for my Altenew giveaway - I loved reading those! Thank you! Here is my winner - Stef Perry! Please email me using the contact form on the right side of my blog and I'll tell you how to redeem your prize.


I hope everyone has a great weekend. Just a reminder to you to stop by my blog on New Year's Eve - I will be doing the Seasons Givings giveaway again with lots of other bloggers as a thank you to all of you who visit my blog - I appreciate you! But come by before then too :).

Loveyameanitbye.

Friday, December 15, 2017

The Birth of Comic Sans

I joked the other day on Facebook that I almost printed the labels for my Christmas card in Comic Sans just to punk everyone, and it ignited a font war, as expected. Some people came out of the Comic Sans closet, despite the inherent danger in exposing their derangement.

But I thought about it for a while afterwards and I think I have figured out how and why Comic Sans entered our culture.

It was born out of the office microwave.

If there is one thing that provokes MORE hatred and loathing than Comic Sans - it's an office microwave.

Now that I work from home, #thankthelord, I no longer am subjected to all of the darkness and evil that spawns in an office microwave.

The programmers who just put an uncovered bowl of chili in those things, set it on high and walk away - no longer part of my life. The deranged manager that loves to microwave salmon that has been in his desk drawer all morning - gone. The dieting accountant who burns popcorn - poof! But I know in my heart that every day, across America, emails are sent to grown adults about the vile things they are doing in microwaves and they contain threats which never acted upon. Should someone actually go to death row for what they've done in and around a microwave, America might change. Short of that - people's dark sides will continue to manifest under the hum of the magical zapper.

BUT - what really comes out of a disgusting, abused and vile office microwave is not Lean Cuisine, burned popcorn or reheated fish. No - what comes out of that thing is...

A SIGN INFORMING EVERYONE, IN COMIC SANS IN NO LESS THAN TWO HUNDRED WORDS, THAT THE RECEPTIONIST IS NOT YOUR MOTHER.

THAT is how we got Comic Sans creep, my friends. An angry, middle-aged woman, thankfully unarmed, stomping back from the encrusted wasteland of a microwave in the break room and typing out her feelings in the worst font ever made, unwittingly toning down her apocalyptic rage with that juvenile, irregular excuse for a font known as Comic Sans.

I have a busy week this week - trying to work on samples for Creativation that have to be mailed, trying to get ready for the holidays, work - normal December craziness. Since my Christmas crafting is pretty much done, I've moved on to all things spring - I am ready! So I did a quick and simple 4 Bar card with a really beautiful stamp set from Simon. It's one of those that I can stamp out and color while I'm getting my oil changed or waiting for my allergy shots. I find it frustrating to just sit - and I don't want to look at my phone, so I love having easy coloring projects I can take with me. You will always find markers and a travel watercolor set in my purse. I like this set because it can be used for Valentine's Day, but it's really an all year set. All the words have these stained glass type designs to them and I love the little hearts. I used this die to cut the smaller hearts from glimmer paper to add a little sparkle. This is a 4 Bar card, from the Notecards & Envelopes so it's a smaller card, and I used the Petal Palette paper, which will be out in January.









Simon Says Clear Stamps STAINED GLASS...
[ SSS ]
Simon Says Stamp HEART SPRINKLE...
[ SSS ]
MISTI Stamping Tool
[ MSW | SSS | ELH | SBC ]
Whisper White Note Cards & Envelopes...
[ SUP ]
Whisper White Cardstock - Thick
[ SUP ]
Silver Glimmer Paper by Stampin' Up!
[ SUP ]
Absorber - Synthetic Cleaning Cloth
[ AMZUS ]
Big Shot by Stampin' Up!
[ SUP ]
Rotatrim Professional Series Cutter -...
[ BLIC ]
Multipurpose Liquid Glue by Stampin' Up!
[ SUP ]
Copic Sketch Marker RV29 CRIMSON Red...
[ SSS ]
Copic Marker REFILL YG23 NEW LEAF...
[ SSS ]
Copic Sketch Marker Y35 MAIZE Bright...
[ SSS ]
Copic Sketch Marker BG07 PETROLEUM BLUE
[ SSS ]
Copic Sketch Marker YR68 ORANGE...
[ SSS ]
Copic Sketch MARKER b79 IRIS
[ SSS ]
Copic Sale
[ SSS ]


By the way - Simon Says Stamp is having a Copic sale right now - 25% off. Might be time to finally finish my hex chart. The sale info is here.

So I hope your holidays aren't too crazy, and I hope you don't have to use an office microwave any time soon. But I REALLY hope you aren't subjected to Comic Sans, my friends.

Loveyameanitbye.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Watercolor Monoprints - Altenew Blog Hop + Giveaway

It's Friday y'all - we made it!!!

I don't know why - but this has been the longest week EVERRRRRRR! But that all ends here, because today I'm part of a super fun blog hop with some friends and Altenew - and they have some super giveaways too, so go grab yourself a beverage and let's talk about FLOWERS. :)

Like you, I'm in awe of Altenew's florals. Their modern/vintage mashup style has produced some of my favorite stamp sets I've ever owned, and their December release is no different!

I live in a climate that is hard on flowers. Our soil temperature doesn't ever drop low enough for the beautiful flowers California grows, and we are relegated to the section of the seed catalog that says "ONLY NEEDS A HOT ROCK TO GROW ON," which is a pretty sad section, I'm not gonna lie.

So my flowers have to live in my stamp room, and they bloom in here in profusion, trust me.

One at Altenew in particular called my name - and that is the lovely new Peony Spray. I knew it was an excellent candidate for my stamp etching technique, and so that's what I did.

But first - I had to try out an idea I'd had for the Gel Press for the background. I wanted to use watercolor powders (Paper Artsy Infusions) and masking on the press - because the powder sticks to the plate, so I came up with a trick to create monoprints with a watercolor medium, similar to my trick for making dye reinkers viscous enough to print with. You can see that video here, and my video for today's trick is below the cards. It's been gloomy here this week, so I went with sunshine colors :).

Peony Spray Stamp & Die Bundle
[ ALTN ]
Peony Spray Die
[ ALTN ]
Flower Arrangement Stamp Set
[ ALTN ]
Flower Arrangement Die
[ ALTN ]
Mini Blossom Die Cutting Machine
[ ALTN ]
Strathmore? 300 Series 9" x 12"...
[ ART | SBC ]
Paper Artsy GOLDEN SANDS Infusions...
[ SSS ]
Gel Press 3 x 5 REUSABLE GEL PRINTING...
[ SSS ]
Stampin' Spritzer (126185)
[ SUP ]
Heat Tool (Us And Canada) by Stampin'...
[ SUP ]
Merry Little Christmas Designer...
[ SUP ]
Brutus Monroe RAVEN Ultra Fine...
[ SSS ]
Altenew EMBOSSING Ink Pad ALT1979
[ SSS | ELH | ALTN ]
Altenew JET BLACK Crisp Dye Ink Pad...
[ SSS | ELH | ALTN ]
Copic Multiliner SP 0.03 BLACK Ink...
[ SSS | ELH | ART ]
Whisper White 8-1/2" X 11" Cardstock...
[ SUP ]
Multipurpose Liquid Glue by Stampin' Up!
[ SUP ]
Gold Glimmer Paper by Stampin' Up!
[ SUP ]
Basic Black 8-1/2" X 11" Cardstock by...
[ SUP ]
Hero Arts Ombre Sequins SUNSHINE CH304
[ SSS | ELH | SBC | HA ]

Aren't those happy and fun? They were SO much fun to create, even though I totally did one of them backwards first (easy to do when monoprinting) and I left that mistake in the video so you can learn from my selfless sacrifice of a card front!

And I've been SQUEEING all week over my adorable new mini die cutting machine - look at this cutie!! It's only 6 x 4.5"!! It has little suction feet on it. You'll see it in my video - FINALLY a die cutter that will fit in my videos! I like to film with my Arkon Stand (20% off coupon below) pretty close to my desk for details - and so my Big Shot is just too big to fit in the frame. So this adorable Blossom machine is not just beautiful - with gold flowers all over it - it's super practical.



And I'm also excited to shop for this bundle - I have a lot of hearing impaired team members and blog readers - that's why I closed caption all my videos - and I've never seen anything this awesome. I heart it. AND they are donating a portion of the profits from the sale of this bundle to an organization that supports the deaf community. Love. 




And these ninjas might have to hop in my cart too - how cute are they?


Now before I move on to the video, I have to tell you about my favorite Christmas present, even though it's only December 8th. My friend Lori and I had both been working with Jane Blundell's ultimate watercolor mixing chart and it's AMAZING. She has hundreds and hundreds of colors she gets from a very limited palette. Now I have full set syndrome, so I own the full Daniel Smith line. But that's hard to travel with, and I never go anywhere without watercolor and a sketchbook. So we both decided we wanted her paper book on the subject so that we could always have this amazing reference book with us. Since we both wanted it, we decided we'd each buy it and call it our Christmas present to each other. How smart are we???

Here are a few samples from the preview of her amazing book - there are zillions of charts like these - and all from just 15 pigments. Amazing. So thanks Lori! :) If you like watercolor - this is an incredible tool.





So speaking of watercolor - here's my video, complete with large flub, and then when you're done - how about a giveaway?



So to celebrate this amazing hop, Altenew will be giving SIX lucky commenters a $50 shopping spree, AND I have a $30 Altenew shopping spree to give away as well, because - why not? So leave a comment on all the blogs in the hop by December 15th to be eligible for the Altenew giveaways, and also for my giveaway - just tell me what your favorite flower is in your comment! Winners will be announced here and on the Altenew blog on December 17th. 

Now on to the rock stars I'm hopping with! And please note - there are TWO Lydia's in this hop! What are the odds? Your next stop is the fabulous Lilith, and the full list is below.

Sveta Fotinia

Thank you for stopping by - I appreciate you!

Loveyameanitbye.

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