Sunday, November 30, 2008

Organizing Your Scrapbook Supplies

This weekend I tried my hand at making cards. For the past 4 years - yes, FOUR YEARS - I've been "collecting" all the beautiful papers, gadgets, brads, ribbons, inks ... all to make scrapbook pages.

Nope, nada - I didn't like it. I preferred digital photos and didn't like cutting up my pics - even if they were copies. But, I STILL bought the supplies, thinking well...maybe ... maybe I'll try again.

Free Image Hosting at ATCs!!!..I entered a couple of swaps, loved the fact that I could use the scrapbook supplies for the ATCs ... and then this weekend, I spent Sat and Sun just making cards and doing some ATCs. Free Image Hosting at Free Image Hosting at

Free Image Hosting at What fun I had ... and what a mess I made!!LOL

Free Image Hosting at But, I took some old suitcases that I bought from EBAY a couple of years ago, and intended on painting - but found they were perfect for storing all those scrapbooking supplies I've accumulated.

Free Image Hosting at Also, I picked up a wonderful set of chip board boxes - they will be painted one of these days, trust me - and put away the rest of my supplies. These boxes are so nice, and make everything so much easier to store my supplies right out in the open.

That's it for now, hope you got some ideas for storing some of those paper craft supplies you have hidden all around the house!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Heidi England Seminars

One more this Sunday from my latest seminars!

What type of painter are you? Panty Folder?...have to paint in the lines, follow the instructions to the letter?...have everything just like the artist? Or do you throw caution to the wind?...change the color scheme, add different things to make it your own?

Well, if you love to throw caution to the wind try Heidi England. When I first saw Heidi's work, I knew I had to paint with this artist - because I love the folkart style. I love art that tells a story, that identifies with not just a period in time - but the story that also ties in directly with the artist. For me, Heidi's work did just that, and I knew that I wanted to paint with her.

Heidi lets you make your piece your own. I've changed hair textures and skin colors painting her patterns, to fit in with my own culture and my own home - and she encourages it and more. Here are some slide shows of previous seminars that I have taken with Heidi:

Shades Of Green Cabinet Seminar, Oct 2008

Hiedi England Shades Of Green Cabinet

Jack Sprat Cabinet, March 2008

Hiedi England Jack Sprat Cabinet

Italian Country Table, October 2007

The Apple Tree_Heidi England Seminar _Oct 11-14 2007_Springfield, VA

Rooster Cabinet Class!!!

Hello fellow bloggers!!!! I am always inspired by those of you that share through your blogging, and I've promised my fellow blogger Sandra (BabyCake Speaks), that I will be a better blogger - so here goes!!

My most recent class was a rooster cabinet class - the designer is Michele Walton who lives in Utah. The class was taught by Carolyn Spencer at the Apple Tree Tole Shop in Springfield, VA.

When I saw this piece - I was hooked. Loved the colors, and had to paint this! My goal through my painting, is to learn as much as I can from other artists - especially the different techniques, and to incoporate what I have learned with my own designs and painting. I want a home that truly reflects ME. Funky, eclectic and original!!

Take a peek at what we did in class!

Michele Walton Rooster Cabinet

What I've been up to....

Let me see .. it has certainly been a while since I have updated my blog. Since my last post, I've driven across country with my family from VA to Oregon - and what a beautiful country we live in! It was really inspiring, not just artistically, but just to see this country up close and in person - it gave me a new perspective on so many things. People for the most part were friendly, and welcoming - it was a great experience.

Views From Oregon: Crater Lake_07272008

Now, I guess you're asking yourself - why Oregon? Well, Jamie Mills Price is in Oregon and anyone that is familiar with the beautiful detailed whimsical snowmen, gingers and Santa's by Jamie Mills Price of Between The Vines, knows how well worth it one of her seminars were. I say WERE, because Jamie held her last seminar in Oregon this past summer - so if you want to catch Jamie now, you'll have to go to HOOT (a painting convention in Ohio). Here is the seminar that I drove across country to be at, with Jamie and the rest of the Viners:

Jamie Mills Price Seminar, July 2008

Jamie Mills Price Seminar July 2008

And this is from the first time I met Jamie in person, last summer. My web buddy Elaine and I flew to Oregon, along with her sister Audrey to paint with Jamie - and we had so much fun. It was a blast finally meeting Jamie in person after years of seeing her online and corresponding with her via email and web lists:

Jamie Mills Price Seminar, August 2007

Jamie Mills Price Seminar Aug 2007

My First Visit to Oregon, August 2007:

Views From Oregon, Aug 2007

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

How To Paint Walls and Borders

The easiest way to do a wall border is to do the complete design in sections. This way you're up on a ladder one time, doing all facets of the design.

To make things move along a little more quickly, you can start to use multiple brushes of the same size. For a rose bud border for instance, you will have a brush with acrylic colors wine/white; green/yellow; periwinkle/white (for filler flowers) or scruffy brush for wisteria.

If you load the green brush, use it, and then put it in the water...the green brush handle is the one with your green paint...for the pink one, dip the end of the brush into berry wine and put it in the will know which one to use for the rose buds and which one to use for leaves without having to take it out of the water and look. When you are ready to use the brushes again, take them out of the water, dab off the excess water on a paper towel, reload a little more paint into it, and go right to your wall...saves you the step of totally reloading. To keep the scruffy brush fresh, lay a damp paper towel on top of it, but don't wash it out in between segments...water is deadly on that scruffy. Sometimes I use multiple scruffies to make sure I have a dry brush each time.

How to measure?

Use the brush handle as your measuring tool. The border on the top of the room should be about a brush handle's length away from where the wall meets the ceiling. Main flowers on the vine should be at least a brush length away from each other.

As far as are hand painting a border, not stenciling it. As such, you would not want each and every flower to be the same size and placed on the vine in the exact same could get a stencil to do that.

Another tip - spread your fingers out and move your hand over the vine...use that same concept to place flowers. Paint the main flowers first, then go back and place the smaller ones/buds, then filler flowers. Always remember, if you think you have enough, you most likely do...always start off with a loose can always add more, but you can't take it away so easily.


Remember your ladder safety when you're doing walls. Please use a ladder that will hold your body weight safely...there are all kinds of classifications of ladders...make sure you follow the manufacturer's safety instructions...and never lean to the sides...very easy to forget when you are painting borders.

Have fun!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Painting On Soap

Sometimes its all in the deatils. Ever heard that expression? Well, it's true. Painting on soap is one of those inexpensive things that painters and crafters can do for quick sales and quick gifts.

Decorative artists have a saying. If it moves - we'll paint it! You'd be surprised at what you can paint on, if you look at it long enough! Below, are directions on how to prep and paint one of my favorite surfaces found around the house.


Buying unscented is best . I buy large bars at the local Dollar Store - 3 for a 1.00.

Unpack the soap, lay it out on a paper towel. Clean the topside with a cotton ball and alcohol, wiping the tops of the smooth side. Be careful not to handle the top or get prints or oil on it.

Air dry one day. Smooth side up.

Brush on 1 coat of Jo Sonja All Purpose Sealer on the smooth side while still in tray.

Let dry 1 day.

Use regular Acrylic paints, paint your pattern.

Let dry in tray 1 day.

Spray top coat of Krylon 1311 matte or gloss finish if you prefer on painted top of soap.

Spray lite coats, letting each coat dry before applying another.

Let dry 1 day.

Soap is now ready to pack in baggies, plastic wrap, or boxes for protection. Ready to be given as gifts or used.

The pattern will remain on the soap, as you use the soap from the bottom on your wash cloth, and pattern remains on top till soap is gone.

Painted soap is great to give in seasonal sets, put in gift baskets or sell at craft fairs for quick sales. However you give them or sell them - have fun painting them.

Happy Painting!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Decorative Painting and Trash to Treasure

Looking for a way to bring new life to something? Give it a fresh coat of paint and it becomes brand new again.

Look around your home - you will see plenty of great surfaces. Trash cans, clay pots, even old lamps have the potential to become tomorrows treasure. Even beginners can make manage to take what is old and make it new again. Getting started isn't as hard as you may think. There are many great paints out there to give you various looks and to help you get started.


Krylon Paint manufactures a line of spray paints for plastic called Fusion paints. These paints go on wonderfully smooth and can either be left alone, or applied as a basecoat. Regular acrylic paints go on beautifully. Finish with a brush on sealer, and you have something fabulous.

Look around your home - trash cans, light switches, flower pots ... they all have the potential to be painted and used as a wonderful decorative accessory.


This surface is always fun. If you have a piece that is already painted or varnished, you'll have to rough up the surface before painting. This is to give *tooth* and something for the paint to adhere to. You can use sandpaper, or even liquid sandpaper (go to your local hardware store). After you have sanded your piece, apply a water based primer such as Kilz - let dry - and apply the color of your choice.

For wood pieces that will be outside, remember to apply at least 3 to 5 coats of an exterior varnish to protect your piece from the elements.

Glass and Mirrors

My favorite surface is glass. There are wonderful glass paints out there such as Folkart Enamels, Decoart Glossies, Liquitex Glossies and Pebeo paints. All 3 brands make painting on glass and even mirrors a lot of fun. What a wonderfully inexpensive way to make a boring plain surface new again.

So look around your home and before you toss something out into the trash consider adding a fresh coat of paint - you never now - you may get hooked on painting trash to treasures!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Save It For A Rainy Day ... NOT!!

How many times have I put off basecoating a surface? Prepping a piece? Taking pictures of my pieces to send to my webmaster? Too many times to count.

So today, I decided to organize my painting time like I organize my days - the way I used to .

I carved out 2 hours today to put all of my loose patterns and line drawings into file folders that I bought at the clearance rack at TARGET. TWO HOURS resulted in 4 years of cluttered stacks going away and lo' and behold...I discovered extra space where junk used to be!! LOL

Who knows - maybe this time next month I will actually have cleaned up more clutter and given myself much needed space.