"Life isn't about finding yourself, it's about creating yourself."

Friday, April 29, 2011

She was not afraid!

I 'm away on my Birdsong retreat but I wanted to share a necklace I made for myself, in anticipation of the trip. I guess it's no secret that I am intimidated by all the talent that will be there. I don't understand why I am so insecure about my artwork....I'm not typically an insecure person, trust me! In fact, I fall much closer into the egotistical, arrogant category. ;) But early on in life, I developed an insecurity that my art wasn't good enough. And over time, gave it up. Decades passed & I didn't do much & somehow, a little girl who was passionate & fearless about her art, grew into a woman who never drew anything more than a heart shape...or wings.

I want to channel that fearless little girl & encourage her to come forth again. Wish me luck!

I created this pendant out of a matchbox. It was an idea I saw in Somerset's Jewelry Affaire but they soldered the boxes. I filled mine w/ resin instead. I used a childhood photo of myself & the text She Was Not Afraid, blinging it out of course. Wish the look on my face showed clearer. I am challenging the world & all comers! LOL

I finished off the back w/ a Waverly rose & Rangers Glossy Accent for durability.

Little fearless girl....come out, come out wherever you are!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

My bags are packed & I'm ready to go!

I've got the Blazer loaded & Lisa, Marie & I are on our way to Kansas for Karla's Birdsong retreat. We are going to have such fun!!!! Good shopping, good atmosphere (have you seen Karla's cottage?????) good friends, good classes & good ole fashioned fun!

My old craft case was falling apart so I spiffed up a vintage Samsonite cosmetic case...

w/ vintage millinery blossoms, seam binding & a tag w/ my blog name on it.

You know you're a mixed media artist when you're packing more art supplies than you are clothes & accessories. ;) All I could fit in this case was tools & glues. I have a mega-tote full of everything else.

And speaking of accessories... I made this barrette out of resin & a wonderful image of a bird. Too cute, huh?

Now I'm off to Birdsong...tweet! tweet!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Did you remember Secretary's Day?

I did, thank goodness! And w/ enough time to create this wonderful pendant for her. I honestly don't know what we would do w/out Donna. She is not just a secretary & she's not just an office manager...she manages our entire automotive shop. With hubby traveling in his paintless dent repair business (and now Clifton is traveling w/ him) she bears almost the full responsibility herself. She keeps the bank accounts straight (mine alone can keep her busy LOL), handles the customers (plus a surly mechanic!) & adds a much needed touch of femininity to the office.

We put our money where our mouth is & gave her a recent raise (true to form, she tried to decline it, saying that the shop couldn't afford it LOL) but I also wanted to make her this pendant, leaving no room for doubt who The Queen of the Shop is. I'll deliver it w/ a vase of flowers later today.

I found a whole bunch of old cracker jack toys @ a garage sale last year & this little wrench was in the lot. I had hubby cut, file & bend an old spoon (turning the handle into a "ring" to hang from)....then I glittered the basin, glued the text "Queen" (isn't that a wonderful font? it's called windsong) in & added the tiny wrench & gold crown. Then I filled the spoon basin w/ ice resin.

TaDa! Isn't it cool?

Queen of the Shop!

I've made a couple of resin pendants lately. One is for a swap gift for Birdsong, that I will share this weekend & one was made for someone extra special..... me! *grins* I'm really pleased w/ how they all turned out. You'll have to come back & see!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Swap Spoilers....

Hi y'all! Hope everyone had a wonderful Easter Sunday...we sure did! Today, I'm sharing some swaps that I have been involved in so if you're one of my swap partners in The Spring Petite Inspiration Box swap @ The Speckled Egg or the Vintage Mother's Day Brooch swap @ A Swap for All Seasons, then back out of this post now. No peeking!!! ;)

This first swap was hosted by Heather @ The Speckled Egg. I've been wanting to join in on one of her renowned matchbox swaps for some time now and finally followed through. What fun!!!! You decorate 2 of the larger matchboxes, fill it w/ goodies in the current theme (Heather hosts the swaps periodically & they always have great themes!), mail them off & you get 2 back.

I decided to decorate my 2 boxes differently but kept the contents the same.

This one I made for Cecily... I painted, inked & glittered up the box, then made a "blossom" out of rose fabric, tulle & a vintage button....adding a final touch of Spring.

This one is Melissa's, I used a beautiful dotted paper & added a Springy image of a lovely lady.

I achieved the wonderful crackly effect on her w/ Rangers Crackle Accent & then ink. Too cool, huh?
I only took pictures of the contents of one box cause they're both the same. I lined each box w/ a gorgeous, vintage lace hankie. I always say that I like to include a "heart item" in each swap. A "heart item" is something that makes my heart go "noooooooo...you want to keep me!!!!" *grins* For this swap, my heart did not want to let go of the hankies! But in the boxes they went. I also included a recent flea market find...a french poodle pin. Isn't it sweet?

And then I filled the boxes w/ all these goodies! A fabulous shade of pink glitter (a good pink glitter is hard to come by!) in an old salt shaker... glittered mini-clothespins... authentically aged pink lace, wound on a spool... tiny bouquet... wonderful crocheted lace w/ earring clip... scallops cut out of ledger paper... crown cut-outs... a vintage birdie cupcake topper...

and a resin bauble that I glued to a filigree backing. I hope my partners enjoy their boxes!

This next swap was for the Vintage Mother's Day Brooch swap @ A Swap for All Seasons. I decorated up a paper mache box w/ a vintage image of a little girl, adding an I Love Mom banner & dolled up the box w/ lace & buttons.

This is the beautiful brooch I chose, from my collection, to gift my partner with. I hope she likes it! I had a hard time choosing which one to give her but settled on this one cause it's one of my favorites.... I've worn it often in the past. Take good care of it Becky!

And Linda works so hard at A Swap for All Seasons that I sent her this adorable MOP pin as a hostess gift. It was another find from my recent trip to the cattle barns flea. I got some great finds that day but haven't had time to share them w/ you...maybe later in the week.

I have a couple more completed swaps to share w/ y'all but I'll do that next weekend while I'm away at Karla Nathan's Birdsong retreat. Yep, you heard me....I'm going to Karla's! I'm going to Karla's!!!!! I have admired Karla's work in magazines for over 10 years (my older readers know of my obsession appreciation for her) & although I can't credit her fully w/ influencing my decorating style (wayyy too much inspiration out there to give her all the credit!); if I had to name just one name, her's would be it. Then we met while blogging & became friends.... and in just a few days, I'm gonna be sitting in her lovely, lovely studio sipping a cup of tea. *sigh* I couldn't be any more excited if I were meeting Brad Pitt!

But Karla, can I trade in a cup of tea for a glass of wine? Wine's really more my speed! LOL

Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Easter bunny came!

And he has a new partner! *grins* Aren't these the cutest little "bunnies" you ever saw?

It's a good thing the Easter Bunny has help this year 'cause look at all these baskets I made for my "grown up" family. I wanted to put a specialty chocolate in them but all the chocolate stores in my area are out of business now. :( So I just put a Lindt bunny & lamb in them & added a handful of peanut butter cups. You can't go wrong w/ peanut butter cups. ;) The pink ones are for the girls in the family & the green & blues are for the boys.

Since the Easter bunny brings plenty of candy for the grands, I made them so jello eggs. They love the jeweled jello squares I make, w/ different colors of jello & sweetened condensed milk, so I know they'll love these.


1 (3 oz.) pkg. lime Jello
1 (3 oz.) pkg. lemon Jello
1 (3 oz.) pkg. orange Jello
1 (3 oz.) pkg. strawberry Jello
6 pkgs. Knox plain gelatin
1 c. sweetened condensed milk
6 c. boiling water
WHITE LAYER: Mix 2 cups boiling water with 2 packages gelatin until dissolved (I allow my gelatin to "bloom" first in just a bit of cold water). Add sweetened condensed milk. Cool.

JELLO LAYER: Mix 1 package Jello with 1 package gelatin. Add 1 cup boiling water. Stir until dissolved. Pour into 9x13 inch pan ( I used jello egg molds instead), wiped with mayonnaise. Freeze for about 10 minutes or until a finger touched to it leaves an imprint. Pour 1 cup milk mixture over Jello layer and freeze for 10 minutes. Every 10 minutes, add another layer and freeze ending with strawberry Jello. (do not leave the layers in the freezer for longer than 15 minutes @ a time or they will separate.)

I'll have my entire family here w/ me for Easter this year. Life is good! I hope the season blesses you as generously!

Friday, April 22, 2011

He died for us on this day....

& to commemorate that, I want to share my collection of vintage religious prints. I have shared my "Stairway to Heaven" on my blog before but it was a couple of years ago so I thought I'd post it again, for those of you who haven't seen it.

I hang all of my collection on one huge stairway wall, from the baseboards to the ceiling! I can't get it all in one picture so this is from the bottom of the stairs looking up.

This shot is from the top of the stairs, looking down. The stairway is in a dark part of the house so you'll have to forgive the bad lighting. I did the best I could!

Many in my collection are by the artist C. Bosseron Chambers. He was the foremost religious artist of the 20th century...LOVE his work! Most have a trademark "halo" that makes his work easily identifiable, even if it is not signed. This one is of a young Mother Mary...doesn't she look like Drew Barrymore as a girl?

This is another C. Bosseron Chamber & is of a more mature Mother Mary.

Another Chambers....this one is St Anthony.

"I will bless every house in which an image of my Sacred Heart shall be exposed & honored".

Love this pair of praying children!

And this guardian angel print!

A beautifully hued print of St Therese.

Another Chambers...this one is of a young St Paul.

And yet another Chambers...this one is St Therese.

Another work of C. Bosseron Chambers...this one is of a young Jesus & Mother Mary. (told y'all I was a big fan of his work!)

Forget each kindness that you do, as soon as you have done it.

Forget the praise that falls to you the moment you have won it.

Forget the slander that you hear before you can repeat it.

Forget each slight, each spite, each sneer, wherever you may meet it.

Remember every kindness done to you, whatever its measure.

Remember praise by others won and pass it on with pleasure.

Remember every promise made and keep it to the letter.

Remember those who lend you aid and be a grateful debtor.

Remember all the happiness that comes your way in living.

Forget each worry and distress, be hopeful and forgiving.

Remember good, remember truth, remember heaven's above you.

And you'll find, through age and youth, that many hearts will love you.

I did have a partner print to this next one; it was of The Last Supper & was also in a rococco frame w/ bubble glass...it fell off the wall & broke. I was so upset about it, that I am ashamed to say, that I used the Lord's name in vain when I discovered it. *blushes* But it was years ago & was the very last time I've done so.

Inside the birdcage is a tiny little print.

The Garden of Gethsemane.

Another beautifully tinted print...this one is of the Holy family.

LOVE this print of St John & a lamb!

but my favorite in my collection, will always be C. Bosseron Chambers' most famous work. It's of Baby Jesus & is titled Light of the World. My grandmother had a copy of this hanging in her bedroom. It was the first of my collection & will always be my most treasured.

I'm linking up to Debra's Vintage Inspiration blog party...be sure & check out all the other vintage inspiration!

Hope everyone has a wonderful Good Friday! I'm keeping Noah today...we're practicing finding eggs so that he can compete w/ his older cousins on Easter Sunday. ;)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

My first altered doll!

Are you one of those people who get the "doll parts" craze going on right now? Or does it leave you shaking your head & thinking "Holy shih tzu...what's up w/ that?" *grins*

When I first saw an old doll head, under glass, somewhere, I was instantly smitten. I just fell in love instantly & started collecting "parts" (although I have been known to dismember whole dolls LOL) before I even discovered altered dolls. But I did discover altered dolls (love the Somerset publication!) & I'm very proud to introduce my first (of many!) altered dolls.....Hunee Bunny. (I named her after me.)

I ripped the ratted, tangled hair off an old doll head & paper clayed ears & a fur coat onto her....

kissing it in spots w/ crackled paint (heavy in some spots & lighter in others) & then hit it w/coarse glitter where I didn't use crackle paint. The glitter doesn't show up very well in the pic above but you can see it better in this close-up.

I blinged her up some w/ rhinestone "buttons".....

and glittery pink "shoes"....

and used wired pearl strands for "arms".

Doesn't she have the sweetest expression? Her eyes even open & close!

*sigh* I just love her! Even though I know she leaves many of you thinking, "Holy shih tzu...what's up w/ that?" *grins*

Also, I was asked to share the image I used in creating the chenille bunny, in my shadow box egg, in a previous post but I am late in doing so...sorry Leann! Hope you can still use it! I flipped the image before printing cause I wanted him facing the other way, you can do it in paint program.

Can you believe I've already posted my Easter decor & Easter projects & it's not even Easter? I know! Me neither!!!!