Friday, September 30, 2011

Tiling Up September

An hour in the morning, an hour in the evening, often after golf and into the dark, but little by little, progress is being made!
Surrounded a rose focal with iridescent china chips.

Detail Friday AM 1

This blue focal I cut out myself, while preserving most of the rims of the lovely blue toile plate.  It has a creck in it which helped the cutting, and enabled me to cut it, else it might have been too pretty!

Detail Friday AM 3

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Scrapping Up September

The last of the challenges completed for September, this first one an "Inspiration" challenge from Design House Digital.  This was a nice opportunity to scrap a few photos from last weekend's visit with Megan in San Francisco, where it was a beautiful day and I finally took the time to take a closer look at the mosaics at the Rooftop School across the street from her apartment.

Inspiration Challenge

Background Paper - Karen Funk For the Boys
Lined Paper - Deena Rutter Necessary Office Papers
Tiffany Tillman Tears Set 1
Agnes Biro Abandoned Office clip and pen
Karly Dudly Did-Essentials staple

The last of 6 challenges at Oscraps, a journaling challenge, to write about the best part of the summer, which was undoubtedly our trip to Europe.  I find myself missing Europe, missing that leisurely pace of just being together and doing things, the only obligations perhaps a reservation here or there to see something special, all the wonderful wanderings and discoveries and meals, and NO WORK!

Summer Journaling 
Template is Maya de Groot's Snap monthly (modified), with papers from Anna Aspnes ArtPlay Palette Strawberry preserves, word art from FotoBlenz Template No 12, and Script Tease overlay.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Crafty Blogging - The Design Sponge Event

Take what I do, as in artsy craftsy blogging, to a whole different level, and you have design*sponge.  Um, perhaps I shouldn't even put me and design*sponge in the same sentence, but anyway... not sure when it was I discovered design*sponge, but I enjoy it daily, with doses of DIY, peeks into beautiful homes, and inspirational design references.

A couple of months ago, pre-release ordering of Design Sponge at Home, the book, was announced.  I was at work and didn't want to take the time, so I wrote on a scrap of paper, order Design Sponge book for Megan.  Not long after, she texted me that she had ordered the book.  Rats, there goes a good Christmas present idea.

Last night, though my proactively following of design*sponge on Twitter, we were among the attendees "on the list" for the book signing at Anthropologie in San Francisco.

I managed to take lots of blurry photos,

Megan at Anthro

but some were still fun and inspiring, as in, I love these decorations made with shredded maps . . .
Anthro shredded maps

and I think this dress needs to come home with me, it would be good to wear for Thanksgiving . . .
Cute corduroy  dress

So many things I love, both for sale and as decor:
Zzzz 's mobile Inspiration at Anthro
Inspiration at Anthro Book at Anthro

Here was the cookie wall that served as the backdrop for the event photographer...hopefully we will get to see the picture of us in front of it.  And yes, one did get to eat the cookies off the wall, and yes, they were good, especially when washed down with champagne!

Cookie Photo Wall

and thank goodness one good non-blurry photo of Megan with Grace Bonney.  How cute are they??
Megan & Grace

Oh and yes, I was there, here is the proof:
Me in the Mirror

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Manically Mosaicing

Since I spent time on Sunday resting, designing and cutting, and laid out almost a whole table's worth of design, I made pretty good progress yesterday on the Big Mosaic Project.

On the left, I unintentionally added a set of Mickey Mouse ears in red china:
Mosaic Monday left

On the right, a couple more circles, and I found the perfect piece of blue china to fit in that funny shaped hole:
Mosaic Monday right

Monday, September 26, 2011

Followed By Busy

The day of rest is over, it's Monday, and there is too much going on.
Good thing I found the time last night to scrap another weekly, Week 38.

So much of Week 38, which was just last week, was taken up with the Big Mosaic Project!
Other highlights include that great brunch Megan and I had at Chez Maman...eggs benedict, crepes, and Pain Perdu...oh yum!

Week 38 Blueprint 10
Credits, all from Design House Digital: 
Karla Dudley's Breezy papers for the Color Swatch challenge, 
Gen Bursett's Blueprint 10 challenge,
Also used: Deena Rutter's Necessary Office papers, 
Karly Dudley's Digi-Essential brushes, 
Karen Funk Blossom alpha (recolored),
Sara Schmutz Morning Breeze brads,
Jen Allyson's Vintage Findings Circle Alpha,
DHD May Blog Hop freebie.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

A Day of Rest?

I think perhaps someone is looking out for me, and giving me a day of rest.  Certainly my body needs a rest from the Big Mosaic Project!  And so the forecast was for rain today.  Rain, really, already?

I wasn't sure I believed it, but still went ahead and moved all the project boxes and other stuff likely to be ruined by rain into the garage.

Lo and behold, it did rain.  Not enough to keep us from playing golf, but enough to reinforce the decision to postpone mosaics.  And so, there was no further progress on mosaics, but I am ready for tomorrow!

And meanwhile, caught up a bit on scrapping, with a little page on the mosaic project so far...
(using Anna Aspnes ArtPlay Palettes Barren Sunrise, Strawberry Saffron Villa, Script Tease Overlay).
Mosaic Day 4

And a recap of Week 37, September 11-17. This weekly also was done as a blueprint challenge at Design House Digital. 
  Week 37 
All supplies from Design House Digital:
  • Gennifer Bursett Blueprint 10
  • Celeste Knight Honey Cakes, Sunshine and Weathered Overlays
  • Tiffany Tillman Artistic Photo Masks
  • Deena Rutter Necessary Office Paper
  • Karen Funk Blossom Alpha (recolored)
  • Sara Schmutz Morning Breeze brad
  • Jen Allyson Vintage Findings Antique Prints and Circle Alpha
  • Robin M Kraft Party Papers
  • Agnes Biro Abandoned Office Alpha

Saturday, September 24, 2011

AnnaLift 9/23 Butterflies

Another Friday AnnaLift at Oscraps, this one featuring a striking photo composition featuring blue! (by Rita 006).

I was inspired by the blue color, and the backgrounds and elements were so nice, I pretty much reproduced them.  My photo of the day from Monday, when the sky was so blue as we approached the golf course, and two monarch butterflies were flitting about, and one landed on the very tip of the tree and I even had enough time to get out my phone and snap a picture.

I used the blending technique from the tutorial I wrote for Simply Kelly to add some of Deena Rutter's Necessary Office Paper to the background, providing the grid like element I admired in the inspiration layout.

Anna Lift 0923 Butterflies 
Anna Aspnes Magic PhotoBlenz Album pg 20
Anna Aspnes ArtPlay Palette Find My Way
Deana Rutter Necessary Office Paper

Friday, September 23, 2011

Mosaic Project Day 3

If it wasn't for work, and the heat, and the pain in my body from squatting and bending, I would work all day on this project, because it is SO much fun!

I do wish I had done a test project (would have been fun to cover one of the silly faux-rocks in our yard), so I could have refined my techniques, because by day 3 I am getting quite good at the mortaring process and keeping the grout lines clean.  But I think I can go back and chip away some of the mortar, and/or live with it.

Progress is a little slower, however, because I am reaching the end of the concept design that was laid out in advance, and so I must do more thinking, designing and cutting.

Mosaic Thursday

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Mosaic Project Day 2

If I didn't have day-by-day photos, it would be difficult to measure progress.  But I did indeed make progress on Day 2 of the Big Mosaic Project.
Oh how I love all this curly shiny organic cottage chic shabbiness, with a touch of elegant, and a touch of rustic.
And I now have my methods refined for the best results.  Rather than apply the thinset mortar as one would if one were tiling a bathroom wall, this type of application needs the tiles applied one at a time, in the pattern as I go, aka improvisation, and so each tile gets a pat of thinset on the back and gets placed precisely where I want it.

Mosaic Wed Night

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Mosaic Project Day 1

Oh I learned so much on Day 1 of my mosaic project, which I will be putting to good use on subsequent days, such as:
  • 5 pounds of thinset is too much to work with in one sitting
  • thinset dries out pretty quickly in this heat wave
  • it's too hard to work with rubber gloves on, so gald I did not get a manicure recently (but I will need one when this project is over)
Here is a glimpse of the first day's progress, as the sun began to shine on it, which meant it was time to retreat inside!

Section 1 Close Up

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Mosaic Project Begins

I've been thinking about this for months.

Recently, I actually got out all my mosaic supplies, loaded them onto a wagon, moved them into the back yard, and got everything out and assessed what I have.

Then I got out a table, laid down some pattern paper, and started laying out tiles.
After much research, gathering of materials, more research, questions, lots of thought, today I actually started on the project!

Lots more to come!

Monday, September 19, 2011

AnnaLift 9/16 Tournesols (Sunflowers)

A new challenge feature at Oscraps, to scraplift a layout made with Anna Aspnes products, thus the name AnnaLift.

This week's inspiration layout is an incredibly beautiful and colorful abstract tea cup by Judy (jahrm).  I loved the colors, the complements of purple and orange working so well together, the brush work, and the cool red accents, including the red text.


For my lift, I started with a closeup of one of my dyed sunflowers that I got at the Farmer's Market last Sunday, which was rather perfectly orange and gold and brown just like the color in the original, using pictures of the purple-dyed leaves masked in as the purple accents.  Lots of additional elements merged in resulted in my "Tour ne sols" lift, which I LOVE (have to sing that last LOVE).
(Hmmm, I guess technically it should be "les tournesols"...must update before I print).

Credits: Anna Aspnes FotoBlenz Template 5 Anna Aspnes ArtPlay Palettes Sunshine Bouquet, Saffron Villa,  Strawberry Preserves, ArtPlay 1, Anna Aspnes Scribble Blooms

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Digi-Morph 3 Revealed

Another long digi-morph at Design House was July 26 when I finished this layout, which was so fun to do. I was quite early in the process, so my layout looks a lot like the original.  As much as I like doing artsy layouts, I also really enjoy whimsical as well.
And while it may seem I have done layouts about my gnomes before, this one celebrates the addition of Gnomeo and Juliet, as well as the fresh painting of the other outdoor gnomes.


Credits: Robyn Meierotto's Kraft Party (background) and Blog Hop freebie, Celeste Knight Weathered Frames, Audrey Neal Whimsey (mushrooms), Agnes Biro Blog Hop stitches and Love Soul, Jopke Evergreen (bench stamp), Maya de Groot Home Sweet Home (word art and alpha), Sara Schmutz Sweet Shop (label)

Saturday, September 17, 2011


Somehow, albeit unintentionally, I feel like I have captured a reveal of Orvieto as I progress through the pages.

From the streets and alleys...
Orvieto 3

...then up the hill to the fabulous duomo...
Orvieto 4

Credits - Anna Aspnes FotoBlenz Template No 7, Artplay Palette Saffron Villa, Magic FotoBlenz Album No 17.  Jodie Lee Junk Mail brushes.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Simple Photoshop Blending Tutorial

I wrote a guest post for Simply Kelly today on doing simple blending techniques in Photoshop for digital scrapbooking.

I deconstruct the following layout and show how to get all those blendy looks.  It's really easy!
Check out the tutorial here.

Rose Blending Layout

All products used are by Simply Kelly, from her Roll with It kit.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

On to Orvieto

The next stop in my scrapping of our European vacation is the hill town of Orvieto.  I LOVED Orvieto.  I think I could live in Orvieto, or San Gimignano... would be a hard choice.

I've already shown my beautiful photos of the day from Orvieto, the wonderful view of the Umbrian landscape that met us as we arrived at the top of the tufa hill, then the incredible duomo even higher up, the crowning achievement of this tiny hill town.

But there was so much more, so much stone and flowers, shops and people, nooks and crannies filled with little wonders to be discovered, starting from our wonderful Hotel Corso...

Orvieto 1

where from our little balcony we gazed down upon little yards full of pink hydrangeas.
Orvieto 2

Credits - Anna Aspnes FotoBlenz Template No 7, ArtPlay Palettes Poppy, Saffron Villa, No 1, Descriptives Word Transfers, Floral Art No 3; Jen Maddocks Frame Templates, Blink.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Romeo & Juliet Inspiration

The Inspiration Challenge this month at Oscraps was a lovely artsy grungy scratchy journal with a clip on the side.  I knew I would reproduce it quite literally, because that's what I tend to do, but what picture to put on it?

I must think of my vacation photos, because they are not going to scrap themselves!
Flipping through Orvieto, Padova, Stresa...nothing, then I hit on it...Giulietta's courtyard in Verona, specifically, the lovers graffiti wall!

R&J Inspiration Challenge
Here is the inspiration photo:

Papers from Maya de Groot's The Art of Journaling were perfect for the journal cover, already splatted with paint drops and grunged with text. The background is from Maya de Groot's Collage Papers, with elements, including the cool chain heart, from Maya's Artsy Fartsy and Stuck On You.

I added papers and overlays and artstrokes and splats and brushes and the crocheted butterfly from Anna Aspnes ArtPlay Palettes Saffron Villa, Seafoam, Find My Way, Special One and ArtPlay No 1, and some brushwork and fotoglows from Anna Aspnes FotoBlenz Album.

Not only did I meet the challenge, but now another vacation scrapbook page is complete!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Week 36 Scrapped

Still managing to keep up with my weekly layouts of my photos of the day, here is Week 36, Sept 4-10.
The plumeria is growing leaves like crazy, but I still don't see any flower shoots.  The lovely purple grasses sway in the afternoon breezes as we play golf.

Peppers are appearing in abundance at the Farmer's Market, funny things appear on the lawn at work, I had that spot taken off my leg, and the sun is setting earlier.

Week 36 Left Week 36 Right

Week 36 Left

Week 36 Right

Credits - Anna Aspnes Artsy Template No 19, FotoBlenz Template No 11, ArtPlay Palettes Seafoam, Special One, Find My Way & Barren Sunrise, and Portal Art Prints.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Blurry Can Be Beautiful

One of the September challenges at Oscraps is to scrap with a blurry photo.  Unfortunately, I have made it a point recently to delete blurry photos, since, after all, they are blurry.

So I thought I might have to skip this challenge, but while flipping through our Europe vacation photos, since I think I saved a couple that were blurry but precious, like ones of Tod and I in front of something special, taken by someone who moved the camera...anyway, I came across the photos from Truemmelbach Falls.  It was much too dark inside the mountain falls for any kind of instant picture, but still I wanted to capture something of the water-carved walls and thundering waters.

Since all the photos were blurry, it was either keep the blurry photos or have no photos at all (I remember the last time when we were there in 2009, I bought a postcard, but this time I don't even think I bought a postcard).
And so the blurry photos are scrapped into an artsy layout, where masks and blending and brushes seem to make the blurriness seem quite intentional, and quite beautiful! 
Oh and this page counts towards my vacation scrapping, now all I have to do is bridge the gap between Orvieto and Lauterbrunnen!
Trummelbach Falls
Credits: Masks, glows, FotoBlenz from Anna Aspnes Artsy Layered Templates 12 & 19, plus paper & brushes from Anna Aspnes ArtPlay Palette Saffron Villa. Font is laundromat1967, and I love how I was able to emboss it to look a bit like rock.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Remembering Now

On this day of remembrance, I saw someone write, that instead of remembering where they were on Septmber 11, 2001, they chose to ask where they are now, for it is the present that forms the legacy of the future.

And thus, part of my legacy, this beautiful girl and her best friend.  How I love these happy smiles!

Megan & Laura
Credits - background paper, frame, butterfly and word art from Katie Pertiet; brushes and overlays from Anna Aspnes ArtPlay Palette Barren Sunrise, Special One and Hipster Plumes, additional brushes Mary Ann Wise Essence and Flourish brushes.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Week 35 Scrapped

Keeping right on top of my weekly layouts, these from Week 35, August 28-31 and September 1-3.
I love how the bright red, orange and yellow colors balance one another across the double pages, so how perfect that Megan was wearing a reddish sweater (this is an unusually bright color for her) in the Friday photo she sent me because I was feeling lonely, just me and the critters here at Silver Creek.   This was the week I finally broke 50 with a 48 on the front nine.

Week 35 Left Week 35 Right

Week 35 Left

Week 35 Right 
Credits - Anna Aspnes Artsy Layered Template #19, Anna Aspnes ArtPlay Palettes Seafoam, Special One, Find My Way

Friday, September 9, 2011

Bright & Bold Scrapping, Part 3

Perhaps not as bold as the last several layouts, but I love the monochromatic nature of my recent layouts, this one very purple, with its complement, orange, both supplied by Maya de Groot's Backpackers papers 2 and 3.
I took the pictures of the jacaranda tree in the parking lot outside Dr. Kelly;s office.  I remember when that shopping plaza had a Hamburger Hamlet and a Long's Drug Store.  Now it is very changed, but still has the lovely jacaranda trees, with their voluminous purple blossoms.

  Jacaranda BP2 CopyCat
Additional credits - template is from the September Oscraps Copycat challenge, Maya de Groot's Midsummer Night's Dream kit, Anna Aspnes Something Springy.