Sunday, August 28, 2011

$100 Pretty Little Studio Giveaway!

So I have posted about how much I love Pretty Little Studio often here on my blog. I love using their products! Lately I have been creating items with their cute vintage images at an alarming rate even though I have been back in the States visiting with the peeps and working hard.
Have you been to their site to check out their fun paper and scrapbooking items? This weekend may be the best time to check out their product line because they are having a $100 Givejavascript:void(0)away that includes the following items:
5×7 set of A is for Apple Flashcards
5×7 set of Animal ABC Flashcards
Mini Love Notes Papers Collection
4″ set of 26 Baby ABC bunting flags
Mini Hopscotch Paper Collection
Mary Paper Doll Set
Jelly Bean Brights Journaling Cards
Rough and Tumble Cookie Cutter Labels
Mini Little Boys Journaling Cards
A-Z Animal Mini Bunting Flags
Fruit Punch Mini Bunting Flags
Valentine Mini Paper Ribbons
5×7 set of 2011 Vintage Calendar Cards
$10 – worth of our new Scaredy Cat Collection
Interested in winning? Head over to the Pretty Little Studio Blog and leave a comment by 8/31/11 for a chance to win! While you are there check out some of the great design team projects, tutorials and layouts. Good luck winning!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Monday Inspiration: 30 Days of Lists

I love lists! On average I would say I make at least 3-5 times a day. I find the creation of a list helps to calm my mind, helps me to prioritize and simply makes me happy.

If you love lists you should check out I found their site a few weeks ago and just had to sign up for their September program! The concept is 30 list prompts that are completed one day at a time. At the end of the 30 days you will have a wonderful snapshot of your life and opinions at the time of creation.

To get ready for the September 1st start date I have been working on assembling the book that will hold my lists. I decided to use a kolo album I purchased several years ago in South Carolina (Hobby Lobby, yay!). I am so happy to finally put the album to use *grin*.


To complete the inside papers I used spray mists by October Afternoon, Studio Calico and Tattered Angels with masks and American Craft Thickers. For the writing and details I used black India ink and a paint brush. I am looking forward to adding a lot more detail as the month goes on. I have to say that I am really impressed at the quality of the kolo pages. Even with the large (ok enormous!) amount of mists I used their was no bleed through to other pages and very little curling of the paper. I would definitely recommend for your own art journal, mixed media or scrapbook.


Are you thinking of joining 30 Days of Lists? Or are you already participating? Be sure to look me up on the private list forum on the 30 Days of Lists web-site.


Have a wonderful day! – Katie

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Out of the Journal Challenge, Mermaids?

Last night Mr. C. and I headed out for a night on with friends and co-workers. It was a blast! Have you ever had a tequila shot with cinnamon instead of salt? I experienced it for the first time last night and have to say…I did not really like it… While working on work projects while taking the train for the night out I could not resist drawing a few quick sketches and doodles just for fun.


The quick little sketches inspired me to create the 2nd canvas for week two of the “Out of the Journal Challenge.” For my second art journal page on canvas this week I wanted to create something fun and relaxing. My first thought: Mermaids! Now readers, some of you may be thinking a mermaid is fun and relaxing?

Yes! Yes! Yes!

When I sketch a mermaid I think of being a little girl pretending to be a fish in the bubble-bath. Seeing how long I could hold my breath underwater in swim class (just to see if mermaids were possible) and as an adult floating on my back in the water staring at the sky. When meditating in yoga class and they say to go to your relaxation spot…my first thought is water and sunshine. So when working to create something relaxing mermaids and water are always close by in my head.


{The Completed Canvas}



{Picture 1}

First apply a layer of gesso (we are going to be adding lot’s of water!) to your canvas. When dry sketch out your layout with pencil, and adhere paper scraps with gel medium. I used scraps from the paper I used to protect my table when stamping and painting. Wet your brush and apply a wash of blue paint as shown in picture 1.


{Pictures 2&3}

Use misters to apply various shades of color to the wet color wash. I used Mr. Huey’s by Studio Calico in lemonade, blue-grass and calico cream. Blend colors using brush and water adding additional layers as needed.


{Picture 4, close up of completed background}


{Picture 5}

I found it useful at this stage to trace a rough outline of my initial sketch that I could refer back to as I added additional elements as shown in picture 5.


{Picture 6, 7 & 8}

For my mermaids hair I wanted something bright and colorful. The orange crepe place I purchase from a recent shopping trip to Idee was perfect. I tore a strip from the crepe paper roll and crinkled it. I then tore the wrinkled crepe paper into tiny pieces and used gel medium to apply the crepe paper to the hair in the sketch using the traced image for assistance.


{Picture 9}


{Picture 10}

For the mermaid fin I cut a section of canvas (with gesso already applied) and use pink and purple Tattered Angels glimmer mists with a little bit of the Studio Calico lemonade mist to color. The application of the mists can be seen in picture 9. For the mermaid tale I painted it using a paint brushed dipped in the purple glimmer mist as shown in picture 10.


{Pictures 11 & 12}


{Picture 13}

I used peach colored with titanium for the skin, added features and doodling in pencil and then traced over with black ink as shown in pictures 11, 12 & 13. The final step was the addition of lip and eye color and white accents as shown in picture 14.


{Picture 14, the finished product!}

I had so much fun creating this art journal page canvas! You can see my earlier canvas this week here See...Speak...Feel...and my canvas from last week here Art Journal Remix and Out of the Art Journal on a Bad Day! If you have not heard about this challenge yet head over to or to join in the fun.

Off to find my Puma’s and skinny jeans to head downtown for drinks and sushi (veggie rolls for me haha) with friends. I am really getting into the relaxation theme this weekend!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Out of the Journal Challenge Week 2

As a talkative, inquisitive person by nature I have been told for as long as I can remember to please not talk so much. To be careful because words can hurt. To please lower my hand in class (as a very young child) so that others can answer the questions too. Now that I am an adult I find that too many people don’t talk. They sit in a business meeting and don’t speak out, see an injustice and don’t speak out. What does this mean? This natural bent towards speaking and curiosity that as a child was often frowned upon has become a sought after commodity now that I am an adult.

How did this happen? Why did this happen? Then I realized it’s because talking to talk…is just talk. Speaking is the ability to combine what you SEE around you, what you FEEL inside and to SPEAK out to persuade and share with others. This week for the challenge I created this art journal page on canvas to remind me that it is always ok to talk as long as I remember to SEE, SPEAK and FEEL.

To complete the canvas background I first added a layer of gesso to the canvas background because we are adding a lot of water! Once the gesso dried I mixed scarlet red, titanium white and pink glaze to mix a bright pink for the background. While the bright pink was wet I cut circles out of various scrapbooking and magazine paper and applied to the canvas using the wet paint to hold in place. When the bright pink was almost dry I used gesso and water to lighten the color and add dimension.

When dry I added charcoal markings, light blue and yellow accents, journaling and the magazine cut outs. Once applied I added hand painted accents, black ink journaling and details.

To get the drip look for your ink add a little water to the background prior to applying the ink with a paint brush.

The final touch was feathers, silver accents and cute little skirt from a cupcake liner! Did you notice that it uses elements from the last two Monday Inspirations? Pink and papers from a Studio Calico kit? I love displaying this canvas in my house to always remind me to speak out.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Monday Inspiration: Pink!

Summer is winding down and the air already feels like fall here in Germany which makes me dream of Spring time! This week I have really been inspired by pinks, yellows and pale blues. Check out these beautiful pink flowers that I captured on film earlier this year at the Keukenhof in Holland during the Tulip Festival.





Are you inspired yet? Check back later this week to see what this pink inspiration as helped me create!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Sunday Golf & Pretty Papers

How does the week fly by so quickly? One second you are listening to the alarm clock ring Monday morning and the next you are preparing for bed on Sunday to start the week again. That is why I treasure the weekend time I am able to spend with Mr. C. traveling, loving and experiencing life.


Mr. C. after he hit his target, the cart collecting the golf balls lol.

This weekend we were able to go to the Sommerfest in downtown Stuttgart, catch hangover 2 at the theater play on the driving range and still have time to play with paper!


Batter up! (hey I didn’t say I had skills…)

Sommerfest downtown was so much fun! We met up with folks from work and danced the night away. Well…friends talked and I snuck away to dance in the Latin tent with strangers in Jamaican style beanies and mad dance skills. I love that Germany has so many free festivals and fun times.


A blurry pic inside one of the drink tents at Sommerfest

I also took the time to photograph my recent layouts from the Studio Calico, “Mind the Gap” and “Petrol” kits as promised earlier this week. I hope you enjoy looking!

Love of Northern Ireland


The photos in this layout are from our visit to Northern Ireland last year. The Giant’s Causeway and Carrick-rede Bridge are amazing! I used the exclusive Studio Calico patterned paper and used Mr. Huey’s to highlight the title. Ink was used for doodling, outlining the various green scraps and letters and detailing my favorite memory triggers from the Northern Ireland trip.


The Tower


This is my favorite tower in the Tower of London, which actually consists of numerous towers. When I visited back in 2006 my sister captured a photo of me in this same tower which became one of my mother’s favorites. So when I visited the Tower again in 2010 I had my friend Nikki try to re-capture the moment. I felt pretty silly asking but am so happy I did because this photo turned out so gorgeous with the lighting from the window!


For the layout I painted the background paper with gesso, metallic water colors and Studio Calico Mr. Huey’s. For the banner I used the Maya Road chipboard pennants which also came in the Studio Calico, “Petrol” kit and painted them with metallic watercolors. After stamping the Studio Calico images I adhered the photo with machine stitching and stitched the line to hang the Maya Road pennants from.


I finished the layout by attaching the pennants along the stitched line and punch details from My Minds Eye and silver accents from 7Gypsies. I love this layout, it is so soft and pretty!

More layouts, travel stories and life memories to share next week after my week begins with you guessed it, the alarm clock and kisses good morning from Mr. C.!



Saturday, August 6, 2011

Art Journal Remix

So you saw my first stab at the out of the journal challenge in my last post. I have been staring at it thinking it does not really scream me, my style or the message I wanted to convey. Sometimes when we create that is fine because we are re-defining our style or trying out new techniques but this time? I think I was just tired and wanting to make sure that I made “something” for the out of the journal challenge.


The out of the journal canvas I completed earlier this week.

This afternoon I grabbed a German magazine I have been saving from back when Mr. C. and I were living in the hotel and started flipping through it for ideas. I knew that I wanted to keep the same canvas and elements and capture the craziness of the day. Success!


Same canvas from earlier this week; no elements were taken away from the original canvas however gesso, magazine clippings and faber-castell pens were added.

I am so much happier with the way this canvas turned out. I captured my style and the message I wanted to convey. That sometimes life is crazy circus, people try to take you down but you can rise above, reflect inward and find your own inner peace. I love this canvas, especially how the magazine font on the elephant talks about one day in Germany. While I love the results the constant critic in me think’s I may need to add some cute little felt headbands, a girl has to have accessories right?


On a side note, did you see I misspelled circus? Or perhaps I should say I was distracted in dream world and accidently wrote an o instead of a u since I cannot figure out how a person can misspell circus! I started to fix it and Mr. C. asked me why? Isn’t that why we create art? So we can look at the past little mistakes and laugh about what happened to cause it? I started thinking about what he said and it’s true…that is why I like having art on my wall because it’s one of a kind, riddled with mistakes and possibilities and vision just like life. I have such a clever husband!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Out of the Art Journal on a Bad Day!

I love the creative process because it get’s me thinking, remembering, analyzing and feeling my daily adventures. Today’s daily adventure consisted of nasty comments at work, a few tears husband hugs and a trip to my favorite place to eat for lunch (Mr. C. thought I needed some spoiling). Lunch was followed by more work, thankfully no more tears and the execution of a creative dare Mr. C. issued to make me feel better. The creative dare can be found in the picture below, yes that is highlighter make-up as in paper highlighter make-up…on my face.


What possessed me to turn my face into a highlighter canvas? My crying jag which seemed to last longer because I was upset I was crying which made me cry harder (why do we do these things?) made my make-up almost non-existence. After talking to Mr. C. about how to fix the things at work that caused the tears of frustration in the first place I began to whine (yes readers it was whining) about my make-up disappearing. Silly Mr. C. rather than commiserate thought I should simply use what was available and handed me an ink pen in place of lipstick which really made me laugh. So before I left work tonight I gave myself the sharpie make-over you see above Mr. C. laughed so hard at the surprise!

While Sharpie make-up is a great cure for what ails you I still felt hurt and frustrated by the days events and thought I would start my first canvas for the Dina Stamps and Journal Girl challenge, “Out of the Journal.” The goal of this month long creative process is two create two art journal layouts a week on canvas for the wall rather than art bound in your journal.

Here is the process I used to create my first art journal on canvas creation.


Misted canvas with Studio Calico Mr. Huey in lemonade, blue-grass and barnwood.


Quickly did a rough sketch of a heart with charcoal on bristol board.


Painted heart and wings with gesso, acrylic and these fabulous water-based glimmer paints. I bought them at a convention several years ago and love them but sadly cannot remember the brand name! One of the best $5.00 I have spent.


Added charcoal accents to wings and heart and cut out roughing the edges. I wanted it to look like the heart was shining outwards and used the water- based glimmer paints to begin painting rays coming out of the heart.


I decided that I wanted to journal how when the actions of other are interpreted as mean-spirited or things hurt us our first reaction is to want to close our hearts. I changed my mind on the position of the wings to demonstrate this instinctive reaction.


I added the remaining rays of color, charcoal accents and journaling. The journal message states, “Don’t allow the actions of others teach you to hide your heart.” The imagery is meant to show that even if you feel like closing yourself off from the world your heart still desires to give, to love and to experience. These three things are too important to allow others to control them based on fear.

If you are looking for a fun project this month I really encourage you to take the, “Out of the Journal” challenge. The canvas I made today was quick, fun and a great was to express myself.


Thought I would end today with one more look at the sharpie-makeover and the hope that if your adventure today was as raw and intense as mine it gives you a laugh as well!

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